Your Higher Education Marketing Link of the Week… University of Glasgow: Home Page w/o Hero Image… 22 January 2010

University of Glasgow Home Page Opens with Can’t Miss Search for Academic Programs, Skips Hero Image

University of GlasgowIt isn’t easy to find higher education websites that use a truly different design approach on the home page… daring to be different is difficult.

And so the University of Glasgow home page is truly different… not only is there no large hero image or drone video opening the page, there isn’t a large image anywhere on the page. Instead, the home page opens with a feature that’s usually the top task for any potential student visiting a website for the first time: What programs do you offer?

The design approach works well on the small mobile screen you see here. It works even better on a large screen where you can also immediately see to the right of the search box 7 related links if you’d rather not search first:

  • Subjects A – Z
  • Undergraduate study
  • Postgraduate study
  • Online study options
  • Short courses
  • Stude abroad & exchange opportunities
  • Visit us / Open days

On mobile, these appear just under the search block. Still easy to find.

Brand differentiation…

This is another rare example of how one university can set itself apart from most others by adopting a unique design approach. Differentiation in higher education is difficult. This home page differentiates Glasgow from the first second a potential student opens the page. The clear commitment to making sure potential students can quickly complete a top task with no distractions is unusual.

Note that some other universities in the U.K. also feature a prominent “search” space for academic programs high on the home page. University of Glasgow takes it to a different level. Overall, the space devoted to getting quickly to the academic programs offered in much stronger in the U.K than in the U.S.

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