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Higher Ed Search: Navigating Content-Heavy Websites to Serve All Audiences

Technology is changing the face of higher education. A university or college website serves as a central location for a broad audience with diverse interests in the campus.

  • Prospective students use the website to learn about program offerings and education pathways
  • Current students navigate the website to find a variety of information, from creating a schedule to using campus services
  • Alumni stay connected to events and donation opportunities through the website
  • Sports fans use the website to find game schedules, ticket information and rosters
  • Professors and faculty frequent the website for the latest news and to login to the portal

Each of these groups have specific needs to address, which is why giving them the easiest route to relevant information is vital.

Many universities and colleges have several subdomains to meet all of their visitors’ needs, but they may struggle to have a search function that can provide relevant results from all those domains.

Unique Search Needs

For all of these reasons, higher education organizations might be interested in improving their website search function and having more control over funneling website visitors to services and information.

The unique search needs of colleges and universities often lead them to seek a search solution that can handle content-heavy websites, which can be difficult for a visitor to manually navigate. It’s not uncommon for colleges and universities to have websites that can yield 10,000 search results. However, they need to ensure that the correct results are elevated for the different visitor groups. Current and incoming students have different search needs from faculty and alumni, and the website needs to accommodate all the different types of users.

Cludo’s Solution

At Cludo, we provide solutions that give colleges and universities control over their content without having to contact their website developers every time they need something updated in their search.

We understand the needs of colleges and universities when it comes to their search function and content. We create custom solutions for many of our higher education clients that includes features such as date sorting or displaying custom fields like a publish date, tags or the breadcrumb, all to help the users understand the context of the search results.

Our federated search solution is an exceptional tool for colleges and universities. It’s easy to use and has the ability to search across all the different domains a higher education website may have. We can also help higher education institutions set up dynamic ranking on their website where visitor interactions move pages up and down in the search results, depending on the influx of visitors searching for those specific topics.

Since the academic calendar is very cyclical, Banners can help visitors easily find what they’re looking up at a specific time of the year. Customers can set up banners that appear on search results for certain times of the year, such as the admissions period.

Our clients who also use Google Tag Manager can personalize search results on their website to reach target audiences through content with Cludo Audiences. The process assigns attributes to website visitors and will show search results tailored to them, such as a student searching for help on the university’s career center page. It can also show a banner or page ranking for a particular visitor group.

A Better Online Experience for All

Success for our higher education clients is when all visitors from future, current and past students to professors and families are able to quickly and easily find the content they’re seeking.

By equipping your website with an intelligent search function, you can guarantee the vast amount of information on your website is relevant, timely and visible.