In an increasingly digital world, Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) face a unique set of challenges. From attracting prospective students to engaging with parents and stakeholders, MATs must establish a compelling online presence. One highly effective way to achieve this is through the strategic use of Organic Search Engine Optimization (SEO). In this article, we will explore the vital strategies and techniques that MATs can employ to enhance their online visibility and ensure they reach their target audience effectively.
Improving your MATS Online Presence With Organic SEO
As the digital landscape continues to evolve, organic SEO has emerged as a powerful tool for boosting online presence. Organic SEO focuses on optimizing a website to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) without relying on paid advertisements. This is particularly important for MATs, as it can help them stand out in a competitive educational environment.
1. The Role of Keywords
Effective keyword research is the foundation of a successful organic SEO strategy. MATs need to identify and target the keywords and phrases that potential students, parents, and stakeholders are likely to use in their online searches. This process not only improves the visibility of your MATs’ website but also ensures that it ranks for the right queries.
2. Audience Research
This is a challenging task to do when you do not have an audience to ask questions. But if you have even a small loyal audience, you can ask them some key questions, such as:
- What do they like?
- What they do not like?
- What do they want to see more of?
Their answers should help you adapt your school website to those needs and create a better online presence.
3. Quality Content Optimization
Content is king in the world of organic SEO. MATs should invest in creating high-quality, informative, and engaging content that caters to the needs of their target audience. This could include blog posts, articles, videos, and other educational resources that showcase the institution’s expertise and commitment to quality education.
Find new content that your audience will like and publish in creative ways that help your website be engaging, attractive, as well as current. Your audience research will help you with this task.
4. Update And Optimize Current Content
If you have had a website for a while and an audience, then you may have older content that may be out of date. Refresh that content and bring it up to date. Remove or edit sales pitches that can turn many of your audience members off.
Other improvements can be to enlarge previously shorter posts to add new and important information. If you have lists on your website, make them longer and more comprehensive.
These changes should engage your audience more and keep them on your website longer.
5. Do An Onsite SEO Audit
What this audit does is help you clean up your website making it easier for search engines and your audience to read. The audit helps find duplicate pages, improper direct or indirect chains, broken links, URL structure, and much more.
Once these problems are resolved, search engines can read your website and rank it properly. Also, you want to see how fast your web pages load. If they load up in 3 seconds or more, it is time to speed that loading time up.
6. Technical SEO and On-Page Optimization
Technical SEO involves fine-tuning various elements of your website, such as meta descriptions, alt tags, and header tags, to enhance its visibility in search results. On-page optimization, on the other hand, involves optimizing individual pages for specific keywords, ensuring that search engines can easily index and understand your content.
7. Link Building Strategies
Link building is another essential component of organic SEO. MATs can enhance their online presence by earning high-quality backlinks from reputable websites, educational organizations, and industry-related platforms. These backlinks signal to search engines that your website is a trusted source of information.
8. Recreate Your Homepage And Navigational Tools
A user-friendly website is not only vital for retaining visitors but also for SEO. Google and other search engines reward websites with good user experiences. MATs should focus on mobile responsiveness, easy navigation, and quick loading times. A well-organized website with clear calls to action can significantly improve user engagement and satisfaction.
This should be done with your audience in mind. Making the home page more attractive, and easier to read helps deliver a stronger online presence. Plus when you make the navigation simpler to use, your visitors should find it easier to navigate and to explore your website.
When the homepage is unattractive and hard to use, then your audience will not like reading your website. Make these changes to get your audience to like them and you should see an improvement in your online presence.
9. Investigate Your Competitors’ Websites And Strategies
Getting motivation from what other people are doing is a great way to update and upgrade your website. See what they have done and then try similar approaches to your website.
Plus, you can get motivation from those companies outside of the MATS sector. Every little bit of research can help you improve your MATS website and gain a bigger online presence. Here are some areas to research:
- Search result rankings
- Social media
- Paid ads
- Local directory profiles
- Email marketing campaigns
This investigative work will take some time but can be done quicker when you employ the proper SEO tools.
10. Use Local Directories To Boost Your Online Presence
Even if your academy is not limited to your local area, these local directories can boost your online presence. Searchers can find information about your academy without going to your website.
Although you want them to come to your website, getting your information in front of people through a variety of methods is the best way to get known and build searches for your website. Plus, the local directory will have a link to your website to make that search easier.
It takes time for any and all SEO strategies to build your online presence. This is not something that will happen in a day or two. You need to trust your strategies for the long haul and give them time to work.
After a while, if they are not working, make your changes.
Some Final Words
If you are not ready to handle a MATS website design for your academy, or it is a bit over your skill set to do, contact our company. We have the experience to build a great-looking website that will be multi-academy trust website compliant along with building your online presence through organic SEO.