Crafting a Stellar School Website Experience
Have you ever dug through a website trying to find something? We all have, and if you’re like most people, you eventually went somewhere else for that information. These experiences teach us that websites not only need to contain information, but also make that information easily accessible. This should be the goal for your school’s website.
Is your school’s website easy to use?
Your school’s website is a valuable resource for stakeholders. When they want to learn about something, whether it’s related to enrollment, upcoming events or school policies, they turn to your website. They have questions, and your website has answers. Those answers should be easy to find.
An effective website allows users to find what they’re looking for as quickly and efficiently as possible. It’s important to put information on your school’s website, but what’s more important is where that information lives on your school’s website. The website should have an intuitive layout, and it should only take a couple clicks for users to find the information they need.
The user experience is critical. Information doesn’t do your stakeholders any good if they can’t find it! A well-designed website will encourage stakeholders to keep coming back because they know it’s a reliable source of information. A positive user experience can help establish credibility and retain control over information about your schools. Always keep the user experience in mind.
Critical facets of your school’s website
As you develop your school’s website, consider which pieces of information are the most important to your stakeholders. This information should be front and center. While every community’s needs are slightly different, all school websites should provide the following resources:
- News page
- Enrollment page
- School policies
- Staff directory
- Academic calendar
- Student and parent portals
- Student, staff and parent resources
- Plus many others
Map out how these resources will be displayed on your school’s website. The most sought-after information should be available via links along the top of the home page. For broad categories like student resources, you can divide information among several pages, then provide a list of page links in a dropdown menu. The goal is to give your website an intuitive, highly navigable design.
Online interactions are critical to your district’s success. These days, stakeholders primarily get their information through digital mediums. It’s no longer enough to have a website—your school needs a user-friendly website. Show stakeholders they can count on you for answers!