Before higher education institutions started developing digital recruitment strategies that could help them attract more students and interested candidates, the primary marketing tactic back then was standalone direct email campaigns. Fortunately, or unfortunately, these types of traditional marketing tactics are not as effective today as they used to be because of the advent of Search Engine Optimization.

SEO can have and usually does have a direct impact on digital student recruitment because things have changed drastically in the past few years. Today’s decision-making process for interested and prospective candidates has changed completely. This is because nearly all students nowadays rely on search engines such as Google and Bing to conduct searches of the undergraduate and graduate degree, as well as technical programs that they want to take.

Why is SEO important in higher education recruitment?

Digital recruitment has completely transformed the way things are done which has allowed marketing channels to multiply. It has also added increased accountability, thanks to analytic reports, which has made it a lot easier to track successes and failures so that they can be replicated or corrected for further success. Therefore, when it comes to attracting today’s audience, appearing on top of SERP pages has become a priority for higher education institutions that want to stand out and fight against competing schools and universities.

SEO tips for increased enrolment

Carry out an overall SEO audit

Before you can even think about taking steps to increase your enrolment, one of the very first things that you have to do is carry out an SEO audit or approach an SEO agency to do it for you. This will help you understand what needs to be changed and what can be maintained. Performing an audit will also allow you to identify and prioritize your strategies for maximum effectiveness. Audits are particularly essential if you are planning on altering a critical phase such as your website design; because you definitely do not want to tamper into anything if it has been working successfully. Although they may not deal directly with other SEO tactics, an education PR company can also be very efficient when delivering a great strategy to increase enrolment.

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Integrate keywords into your content

When creating content for your website or homepage, it is important to integrate keywords into the content. It is not uncommon for universities to use the wrong keywords for certain courses. So picking the right keywords on every page can ensure that the right traffic is directed to your institution’s website.

Enhance your local listings

Google utilizes data aggressors, which is basically information from other websites, to check whether the data on your school is correct. When there are too many inconsistencies, it can serve as a red flag. However, there are several tools such as Google+ that help marketers to confirm such information. If a university is looking to recruit out of state applicants then optimized local listing are the best way to do it.