Education Portal is a new way of disseminating information for any type of institutions. Yes, any type of institutions and not just schools and universities. Although this trend hasn’t been widespread yet, having education portal nevertheless is an excellent source of digital marketing for companies mostly in the education sector. Let’s find out how.
“According to projections, e-learning market worldwide is forecast to surpass 243 billion U.S. dollars by 2022.”
However, first, what exactly is an education portal?
An education portal is a gateway to all the courses, resources, and instruments that facilitate teaching and learning. Moreover, education portal is a website that acts as an archive for teaching and learning materials.
Commonly used by schools and universities to share educational resources, education portal is now increasingly used by companies to indirectly promote their brands.
So, what’s the deal with education portal really?
For starters, it helps in sharing information and knowledge among like-minded people. But if you look at it more in-depth, it helps in a whole lot of communication.
It’s an interactive site where you can collaborate with people and make it a sort of a community. Moreover, exhaustive information can be looked up about specific topics within the portal for which people won’t have to look up multiple websites for.
And just like any other sites promoting brands through digital marketing, education portal can also adopt similar techniques. Although it’s unethical to sell products or services through educational sources, minimal CTAs here and there won’t hurt anyone.
Besides, people are there to learn about something so giving them a suitable solution is totally acceptable, right?
Take yourself for an example
While looking attributes of best CRM for migration agents you find an article that suggests you few migration consultancy software. Then, won’t half your research work be done? Even if you aren’t interested in getting a CRM software right away, having information will connect the dots in the future.
“More than 90% of visitors who read your headline also read your CTA copy.”
Getting back to our main topic, what actually constitutes of a good education portal?
Here, we have listed out the essential ones under ten categories. So, you can go through them and consider before making yourself one.
1. Enables visitors to create content.
“Quality, relevant content can’t be spotted by an algorithm. You can’t subscribe to it. You need people – actual human beings – to create or curate it.”
Just like any other sites, your education portal needs to be human-friendly too. It should relate to people visiting the site. In order to achieve this, you need to curate your education portal in such a way that people can create and post relevant content. These could range from blogs to images, videos, and voice recordings.
They should be allowed to even comment on or share those content elsewhere. Maybe, like among their peers in the social media sites. This will not only increase user engagement but also help in spreading the word about your education portal among other people. Meaning your education portal will have more users.
On a brighter note, your site, through education portal, will get more visitors which is really good for any site.
What’s more valuable here is that those content won’t just provide information to other users but ultimately add value to your site. Hence, education portal makes your work so much easier.
2. Hosts discussion forums.
Nobody likes to go to a party where people do not talk to each other. Or more specifically, where people have no chance of talking to each other.
Likewise, if your education portal doesn’t allow users to interact with each other, then chances are it’ll start moving south. If not in the real life, everyone wants to hear what the others have to say in the internet. Hence, the rise of social media sites.
Your education portal users aren’t just anyone. They help in building your education portal as a community of like-minded people. Plus, they’re generally the ones who are passionate about your industry offering.
So, these people are also likely to share content of your education portal in other media and help in spreading good word-of-mouth if it matches their interest. Also, they’re likely to follow your guidelines and do what you ask them to- buy some services or product you’re marketing.
Although don’t get me wrong for relating parties with education portal earlier here. Because what I’m relating them with here is that both are information sharing platforms. And if the main purpose of sharing opinions and information isn’t fulfilled then are they even worth it?
Thus, work on creating discussion forums and generating ideas to spark one that interests your target audience.
3. Allows learners to communicate through all devices.
The smartphone market has increased tremendously. So, it’s no surprise that the number of mobile phone users in the world is expected to pass the five billion mark by 2019. That is why a lot of companies use CRM that works in every device. Even migration agencies have their own migration consultants software with this feature.
Rings a bell?
If not, let me tell you that your site needs to have a mobile-friendly site right away. Of Course, more than half of your visitors are going to be from laptop and PCs. But more than half of your unique visitors are going to be from mobile devices. Thus, if you fail to incorporate great user experience in mobile devices, then your education portal won’t be any good.
Make it your top priority to develop all-device friendly education portal. So that everyone using this site will have easy access and can find value in it.
4. Has discoverable content.
Imagine, surfing a site with no clear instructions or for example, an online clothing store with no clear categories. Only clothes and shoe section. Result? Minor possibility with horrible experience!!!
Again, this takes us back to the issue of user experience. It’s annoying for anyone trying to browse a site whose sitemap isn’t clear. Because you’ll have difficulty finding what you’re actually looking for. So, for something such as an education portal, it is essential that users easily find resources they are looking for.
Sort articles or any resource available in categories first. The primary category being the type of media because not everyone is there for blogs or videos. Secondly, arrange them under generalized topics, so it’s easier for users to find what they’re looking for.
Once, these basic arrangements are made, find out what people relate to with certain topic. To do this, check their journey in your education portal and accordingly make more sub-categories.
When education portal enables users to navigate easily on their own, they tend to use it more often. Furthermore, they tend to do what you ask them to too. Like maybe, click on CTAs or subscribe to something you’re offering.
Thus, a little effort on your side will make your education portal so much better. A little tweak here and there, your education portal will become more than just a traditional knowledge sharing platform. It’ll be home to clear communication that people enjoy staying in.
5. Uses relevant language and tone
If you had to imagine your brand talking, what do you think it’d sound like?
Before you wonder what sort of question this is, let me tell you that your brand needs to have a voice. And, that voice has to be heard and relevant to your target audience.
Consistency is the key everywhere. Especially for education portal, the language and the tone used MUST be in consistent with what it is offering.
For example, an education consultancy education portal should have a formal yet engaging tone that relates to its primary target- the students. But, say, a government agency’s education portal should be strictly formal and straightforward. This is because people using it are there for fact-based information and not to connect with each other. So, colloquial tone is not the major player here.
Thus, find out what your audience prefer and what kinds of messages you’re trying to give through your education portal. Create content accordingly for maximum engagement.
6. Makes interesting visuals
“People tend to remember only 10% of information three days later after hearing it. However, pairing a relevant image with that information increases retention rate to 65%.”
It’s no wonder that people love images, videos and other eye-catching interactive things than plainly reading a blog. Interestingly, “reading” as in a general word is more often gives a negative connotation in the reader’s mind. This is bad for your education portal.
Because it signifies some work, they HAVE to do. Whereas, if replaced with different ideas meaning the same things such as “go through this resource material” will increase the chances of them looking at education portal resources so much more.
Moreover, providing illustrations with instructions or videos will increase this chance even more. This is because people do not have to do anything while doing so. They can simply listen to or look at the videos. With this, they are able to grasp the meaning without having to put much of an effort by themselves. Like, in blogs, or any other reading materials, they need to be constantly focused for some time.
Your education portal needs to avail these kinds of interactive media to the visitors. Be it in the form of interesting videos, illustrations, images, sounds or any other variety of them. Show your creativeness while crafting an education portal for your audience and you will be good to go.
7. Is customizable and flexible
All who visit the library do not have the same taste in books. The librarian needs to makes sure that a lot of genre of books are available for everyone to choose from.
Likewise, you can’t possibly assume that all the visitors to your education portal are looking for the same materials. Although, the general idea can be the same. But not everyone is keen about going through everything that your education portal has to offer.
This means that while one might be interested in learning the basics of WordPress in an education portal for blogging. The other could be interested in only learning about the plugins in WordPress. So, this means their learning journey will be different along with the resources they want to go through.
Thus, you should make your education portal customizable according to the needs of your visitors. Not having this feature might upset a user. So, make sure you communicate this need among your team members for maximum effectiveness.
8. Recognizes user’s achievements
“A mentor enables a person to achieve. A hero shows what achievement looks like. -John C. Mather”
Everyone loves when someone recognizes their work. Especially, in the virtual world, where no one is able to see what they’ve done. Education portal will be appreciated if it gives some sort of achievement or recognition to the users. This could be anything from badges to points which they can share among their peers.
Furthermore, apart from resource materials, you can add quizzes and tests in the site. This will help in assessing the knowledge of your education portal users. Which you can use to make their achievements more recognizable.
Education portal doesn’t have to be a boring site where people only come to learn. Well, of course, that’s what it’s meant to do. But, a little tweak here and there will only help in making education portal so much fun to learn.
There are a variety of ideas on the internet that you can look up to recognize user’s achievements. You can even look up eye-catching designs on the internet. So, do a little bit of research, and your education portal will do so much better than ever before.
9. Asks for user’s feedback
Your education portal is for your users so, and undoubtedly, it needs to suit to their needs. In order to do so, you need to constantly take feedback from your users. Be it by conducting surveys through your education portal or asking for feedback once a learning material has been completed.
This is an important aspect for any site to incorporate. Because, once someone forms an opinion about your site, they will spread it among their peers. According to stats, word of mouth is still the most popular method of recommendation for consumers. So, it is only natural that whenever someone forms a negative or positive impression about your site, they will let their peers so.
Thus, you need to make a positive impression among your users about your site. Ask for recommendations and reply to their queries time and again. This way you will be able to provide better user experience every time.
10. Secures user’s data
Your education portal or your site is the first thing that connects with your target market, if not anything else. It communicates your brand with users to it needs to be really good. A minor mistake in your education portal can drive users away.
As your education portal gives flexible options to the users to create their own journey inside it. You need to ensure that their data is secure. Failing to do so can have a really negative image of your site on the reader’s mind.
Good news is it’s not even that hard to secure your site’s privacy. You can simply look up security plans and stick to one. It doesn’t have to be all that complicated as well. Protect everything in education portal with a password and keep your main education portal access to minimum people. Keep your computers malware-free with anti-malware programs available in the market. If you’re wondering, these schemes are quite affordable for anyone.
You can easily create a good education portal once you’re done checking all of these issues. Like I mentioned earlier, it can be for anyone. Make sure the resources available are related to your field and your education portal will do so much better.
Also, there are few things you need to take care of before crafting your education portal. You can skim through them here:
- Consider your needs for education portal and that of your users.
- Tailor the education portal according to what they look for most.
- Have a dedicated web server that can support both public and private sections.
- Make use of digital marketing.
- Ensure that wrong type of content is not posted.
These are just a few simple things you need to consider for your education portal. Besides these, you can always look up other stuff to craft the best education portal for any type of institution.
Your education portal has the capability of being a powerful learning hub. This can be for anything from sales knowledge to IT course to anything. The choice is yours. However, in the end, it all boils down to how much you want to get a return from your investment by creating an effective education portal.