Your .edu site for 2016 looks like this

Step 4: Get the Campus Involved

According to Sheard, getting community support is critical to a successful website redesign and launch. “You need to build a commitment to it within your college, so make sure the site has a strong connection to the mission, as well as a seamless management flow so that any decisions for the website are determined and approved quickly.”

“We sent out a marketing campaign in advance of the new website launch to get staff invested in the site, then sent out a campaign post-launch giving them a detailed overview of the site and our thoughts behind its design. We got a lot of positive responses, but be prepared for the haters who don’t understand why money should be invested in a website…that’s pretty normal,” said Hoang.

To better involve the campus community, Hoang’s team also decided to help the university’s publication, Beach, go digital. “Many of the design plans we incorporated for the website, we did for Beach, such as integrating video, interactive images, come-to-life-with-touch imagery, et cetera,” he explained.

For colleges and universities considering a move to new website design, Hoang said it’s important to know that the website isn’t just for students, but staff as well. “It’s a recruitment and engagement platform all-around—it can recruit and engage not just students, but the most talented, innovative staff as well.”

“Invest as early as possible in mobile, not just on the web,” concluded Sheard. “We spent six years developing our mobile app and we’re not done yet!” He also recommended continuous improvement to both mobile and web strategies by incorporating as much data into decision-making as possible.

See CSULB’s website here. See Westmont’s here.

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