One of the most important things in digital marketing for education is a school’s website. It helps with attracting new students, parents and potentially even new teachers. It also tells them all about your school, its values and its ethos.
However, your school website can’t tell people about your institution if it isn’t visible in the search results. This is where SEO for schools comes in.
What is SEO?
This is done through a variety of techniques, from keywords to technical SEO, and aims to improve a website’s visibility. Search engines provide their users with the most relevant and authoritative pages, so optimising for them is vital to be visible to your audience.
Why is SEO important for schools?
Improve website ranking
Improving your school’s website ranking is the main goal of SEO. This is because it increases visibility and suggests that school has more authority and is more trustworthy than ones that are ranked lower.
It can also have an impact on where the school ranks when people perform local searches, such as when they’re searching for terms like ‘schools near me’. With more authenticity and trustworthiness as well as higher rankings, you’ll find that your school’s reputation might improve and you’ll get more enrolments.
Research begins on the internet, and for parents and prospective students, finding the right school or college often want to find out about what options they have. SEO is a good way for schools to help put their names in front of parents and prospective students.
This can also help tell them what your school’s values and ethos are when they’re doing research. If your school’s website isn’t visible in the search results, how are your prospective students supposed to find you? Once your school website is easier to find, you’ll find that more interested parties are visiting it and enrolling in your school.
Increase parental engagement
Keeping your school website’s content up-to-date with what’s happening at the school is a great way of keeping parents informed and involved with their child’s place of learning. It also shows to potential parents that your school or college is active and has lots of news and events to share.
If your current pupils’ parents are engaged and using your school website more regularly, you’ll find that more people will see your website overall.
Improve user experience
A key part of SEO is ensuring that your website is easy to use, on both desktop and mobile devices. This means that your website will rank better on search results and give prospective parents and students a better experience when using it.
This means they’ll be both more likely to see your website and more likely to think positively of your school when considering where to enrol.
Become part of the local community
SEO for schools can involve doing things on a local level, like being listed in a variety of directories so that people in the local area searching for your school can find you more easily.
This means that parents and students who want to have their school in a geographically convenient location, like near their homes, will find your school even if they haven’t heard of it before, and then do more research based on that, visiting your school website to find out more about its values and ethos.
Local SEO is a way of solidifying your school in the local community and ensuring you show up on local searches. The Local searches are ones like ‘schools near me’.
Ranking for these involves optimising things like your Google MyBusiness account. Putting your school’s name, address and telephone number (NAP) in local directories as citations is another part of local SEO.
Citations tell search engines that your school is located where you’ve said it is, which means it ranks for searches in that area. To make finding citations easier, you can use a service like BrightLocal.
This also tells you the places where your NAP doesn’t match with the rest of your citations, allowing you to fix it and show consistency.
This makes them more likely to find you and find out more about whether your school’s values and ethos are right for them, increasing enrolments. It can also help with keeping your current pupils’ parents engaged by giving them the latest news about what’s happening in your institution.