Home Page to Boost Student Recruitment at Western Governors includes rare 14 Question FAQ Section
While student recruitment is the #1 marketing priority for many (most?) colleges and universities it remains rare to find a higher education home page with a strong student recruitment emphasis. Most home pages still struggle with competing demands for space with the result that content created for potential new students does not always receive the priority it deserves.
Western Governors University is different. WGU plays in the hyper competitive marketplace for online students. With an enrollment of over 130,000 students it plays well.
And WGU employs a home page feature never before seen in my searches: 14 Frequently Asked Questions. More on that below.
7 important recruitment points that start with the opening:
- If you didn’t know it already, now you know that WGU is an “online university.” If that’s not what you are looking for, leave now. Use of the “success” word immediately emphasizes the reason most people enroll at online programs: career success.
- “Request info” appears together with “Apply Now.” Application links are always easy to find, inquiry forms not so much. This combination recognizes that not every new visitor is ready to apply for admission at the moment the page opens.
- There’s an immediate “Find your degree” link that opens to the 4 main academic areas.
- If you’re the type that wants to first scroll the page, you’ll next see the same 4 main degree areas, this time with a simple but sometimes overlooked pathways to bachelor’s or master’s degrees.
- Visit a small, fairly standard section of mini-testimonials with a link to “Read more student experiences” includes a list of 5 star student 2021 rankings that include testimonials to celebrate the rankings. Adding a 4 ranking for two might add to the credibility here.
- Next you can scan the logo images for 19 well-known places that employ WSU grads.
- The logos are followed by a brief (less than 2 minutes) video touting the WGU “Online Access Scholarship” that covers the cost of broadband access fees.
The FAQ section…
While not usually a fan of FAQ sections, this one is different. You won’t find “What is your mission?” or “When were you founded?” These questions actually sound as if real students might have asked them. If you did Top Task research among future students some of these no doubt would appear.
The first question tests a marketing claim: “Is this program truly ‘at your own pace?'”
This, of course, is a marketing research opportunity. Track the popularity of each question. Drop/replace ones that show little interest. Add others from enrollment counselor reports or use of the difficult to see “search” identified only by the magnifying glass symbol.
Twelve of the questions include links to more information about each brief answer given when the question is first opened.
An inquiry form benefit…
WGU promises a benefit to people who complete an inquiry form… “Priority Status to talk with an enrollment counselor who can answer you specific questions about attending WGU.”
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