If you want your website to appear in the first few pages of a search engine result, you need excellent SEO (search engine optimization). If you’re trying to reach a specific audience, such as parents looking for a private school, for example, you’ll also want to consider local SEO, which according to Search Engine Journal, is also quite important. For instance, since 2011, the search “near me” has seen a 34x increase and doubled in just the last year. Parents may search “private schools near me” and if you live in an area where there are plenty of other private schools, yours may not be towards the top of the list and will be missed. When drawing up a private school marketing plan, you’re going to want to focus on SEO and content creation, which can help boost your rankings in search engine algorithms. What is SEO and Why Is It So Important? SEO stands for search engine optimization and can take many different variations, such as mobile SEO and local SEO. However, all SEO focuses on one thing: boosting your website in search engine rankings. Given that most people don’t look past the first page of a search result, getting your website there can be incredible for traffic and results. Users may also trust a website that’s in the top positions for their search more, so you may also come across as a more credible business. With good SEO, you ensure that your school and its services get seen by those searching for a reputable private school. Your brand visibility will also likely increase, as might the number of students applying for admission. This, in turn, could make your admissions more strict, which makes your school look more selective. How Can I Improve My SEO? One great way to improve your SEO is to engage the services of an SEO company who can run a targeted SEO campaign on your behalf. Content creation is also key — more content means more keywords that can be embedded within the pages of your website. You might try running a school blog that keeps visitors up to date on what’s going on at the school, what new services or classes you’re offering, and provide material that engages with users. This kind of content creation can also be linked to social media, further expanding your web presence. Including metadata (a quick description of content that often shows up in search results) can also help, as it tends to be keyword heavy. Be smart about your website design as well, and how users navigate it. If your pages all link to other pages within your site, the better your page ranking will be. This will also help consumers decide whether or not to stay on your site — a cleaner and more streamlined website that’s easy to navigate will keep consumers engaged. MarketingProfs reports that in 2014, users spent only about 1.17 seconds viewing each search result listing. What Will My Results Be Like With Better SEO? You’ll certainly start seeing more web traffic coming across your site. Even if your school isn’t what some users are looking for, you’ll still have gained more exposure. You may also start seeing an increase in inquiries about open houses, admission policies, and general interest with a better search engine ranking. If you’re struggling to fill an admission quota, better SEO could also help you in terms of tuition. With the help of an SEO company, smart content creation, and a social media campaign, your school will have the benefit of greater exposure to help with enrollment and perhaps even in having more selective enrollment as applications increase. Better SEO can only benefit you!