Five warning signs your school website is outdated

How long has it been since your current school website was created? How long since the last major revamp? It’s so easy to put website updates on the back burner and concentrate on the many other pressing issues for schools.

A year or two is a long time on the internet. And your cutting-edge design may look dull and out-of-date. Even worse: your site may no longer be doing its job attracting new families and teachers. Here are five warning signs that your school website needs attention.

1. It doesn’t display properly on your mobile.

60% of UK internet users primarily go online on their phones. This means a mobile-friendly, responsive design is crucial. Google’s algorithm even uses this as a factor when deciding how to rank your site.

2. The design and pictures are dated.

First impressions count. And your website design is the first thing your visitors will see. One study has shown that design accounts for 94% of people’s opinions of your site. Few schools will want to keep up with every design trend. But falling too far behind can signal a lack of care – not a great message for any website.

Has your school branding, uniform or building changed since your last website update? This is a big clue to visitors that your content is out-of-date. 

3. It’s hard to navigate.

People are busy. And they want to find information quickly. Try to navigate your site with fresh eyes, for example, as a prospective parent. Can you find important information, like open days, with a few clicks? What about curriculum information or the uniform policy? Website navigation has evolved over the years, along with visitors’ expectations.

4. It’s slow or often down.

Page speed is important. Not only does it affect your Google ranking, but it can massively increase your bounce rate. (This is a technical term for visitors that click on your website, but leave it straight away.) In fact, 83% of people expect websites to load within three seconds.

Web technology and best practices are evolving all the time. Coding languages like JavaScript or Flash are now used a lot less. This can make your site seem slow in comparison with others. What will visitors do if they can’t get through? They’ll simply go elsewhere.

5. People aren’t contacting you.

Your school website is a key part of attracting prospective parents and teachers. If you’re not getting the results you want, then your site simply isn’t doing its job. It’s time for a rethink.

With a fresh term at hand and the added complications of COVID-19, your school website update may not seem like a priority. But projects like this take time and pay off well into the future. At Blue Apple Education, we specialise in effective school communications and design. If you’d like some expert help with refreshing (or redoing) your site, please get in touch.


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