It can be a real challenge to take all of the content that has to go on your school website and sort it into a well-organised structure, that makes sense and makes everything easy to find. It’s too easy to end up with an endless list of mixed up pages, duplicate and out of date content.
When creating your new school website, you need to ensure your website ticks all of these boxes:
- Easy to find information
- Meets Ofsted website requirements
- Contains relevant and up-to-date information
- The website is engaging and provides an enjoyable user experience for parents, governors and pupils
Edusite are on hand to help you achieve these all-important goals and ensure you get the most out of your new website. We’ve been creating websites for education for years and luckily this means we know what works and how best to achieve the most from your school website. Here are some tips we think you might find useful:
Remove old and out-of-date content
In some cases it might be useful to maintain an archive of information and that’s fine, but often old information is just going to clutter your school website and make it harder to manage. Get into a routine of clearing old content at the end of every term or every school year can be a good thing. There’s nothing worse than a parent looking to see what their son or daughter have been up to in class and finding news from 6 months ago and pictures of last year’s class!
Keep the website information relevant
Consider your school website’s target audience and use this to determine what content you should have on your website. If it doesn’t appeal to your parents, prospective parents, governors or Ofsted, should it be on there? It’s nice to have lots of content, but too much information can make the important things hard to find. You can read our guide on Ofsted requirements here.
Keep the information concise
Encourage staff who are writing the content for the website to keep it short and to the point, so that users don’t have to scroll through reams and reams of info to find what they need. In cases where there is a large amount of information to go on page, split it up into chunks and use subheadings to aid users in finding what they need. If you’re struggling to generate your website content well, you could consider enlisting the help of a professional copywriter.
There are various options available for how the menu on your website works. We usually recommend having 7 to 9 main headings with sub-pages organised within these. Take a look at some other websites for inspiration, but a good starting point can be seen in the diagram below.
Website design that gives you freedom to add more pages
If you think you might want to add more pages to the main menu on your website in the future, make sure your web designer is aware of this and that your website has the space for you to do this. Have you considered having a vertical menu as well as a horizontal one? When we look at school websites we sometimes see examples where they've run out of space so they’ve got a second row of menu items, which doesn’t always look great and isn’t easy to use.
Ensure the person or people updating your school website are properly trained and know how to add pages to your website menu, this will ensure pages live where you really want them to. It’s also important to keep consistency and ensure all of the users treat the website menu in the same way. There’s always the option of our content management service if you’d prefer an agency to take care of updating your website for you.
If you’d like to discuss your school website content and structure with us in more detail, you can find our contact details here.