Keyword Analysis

All about the words: How to maximise traffic to your programmes

To be found online, you have to be visible first. This idea may be straightforward but in reality, is much more complex. Choosing the right words to describe your university programmes can make or break your online search strategy. It not only affects whether a web page shows in Google’s search results, it also influences whether prospective students are likely to click through and visit your university website. Although, coming up with the right name will always involve a blend of academic expertise and market data, in this case study we demonstrate how universities can make much more well-informed decisions about the most appropriate and highest converting programme names. 

In the past faculty boards tended to decide upon programme names mostly based on the programme contents and their own believes. Nowadays, more and more marketeers actively get involved in this process who usually opt for a more data-driven approach. Either they survey prospective students about the attractiveness of various programme names, or they conduct desk research among direct competitors. The scope of these studies are usually limited to a few dozen students maximum. More importantly, a questionnaire assesses what students say they find most attractive in a rather artificial setting; it does not capture actual click-through behaviour. 

To fill in this gap, we have developed the Programme Name Optimizer (PNO). Like Google’s Keyword Planner helps advertisers run successful campaigns, the PNO helps universities reach the students most effectively. Within a set of related degrees, we position potential words and phrases along two dimensions: word commonality and word performance. These data points help you identify unique yet popular words among students. At the same time, the PNO-dashboards reveal how many competitors are promoting these words and to what extent that translates into extra page visits. 

Now let us assume a university is about to set up a brand new architecture degree, but still has to decide upon the programme name. Click through the story points below to see how the PNO can serve as an additional data source to help the university make more well-informed decisions about the programme name.

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