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Business schools need to prioritise Fees and Rankings on their websites

The cost of a degree programme and its ranking position are the two most sought after pieces of content for students (after course information) when looking at a business school website, reveals the ninth edition of the GenerationWeb study by CarringtonCrisp, supported by EFMD.

More than 600 undergraduate and postgraduate students from 57 nationalities took part in the study which found that course fees (chosen by 82%) and rankings (78%) were the most important elements on a business school website.

Conversely, the information that prospective students are least concerned with is alumni profiles, with only 18% citing it as important content on a business school website.

Andrew Crisp, author of the study comments: “The business school market gets more competitive every year and prospective students want to know first what a course will cost them and second, how prestigious it is compared to rival schools. The low position for alumni profiles is surprising, but may be an indication that students are sceptical of alumni profiles neatly marketed to them, preferring to get views on the strength of a school directly from friends and peers on social media.”

The study’s other key findings include:

  • The number of students who search for business school videos on YouTube and other video sharing platforms has increased again to 42%. Amongst undergraduate and postgraduate students, 59% watch videos on business school websites.
  • The trend for searching for business school information on social networking sites has continued with 48% responding that they use these channels. Five years ago, fewer than a fifth of respondents used these channels when considering where to study.
  • Facebook is the most used platform (92%) of those who use social media to get business school information followed by LinkedIn (71%), WhatsApp (71%), Instagram (62%), Google+ (43%) and Twitter (38%).

Regardless of the channel being used, interesting and engaging content is vital. Andrew Crisp concludes: “With thousands of business schools in the world, differentiation can be a challenge. The problem with many business schools’ ads, is that they say little that is different to competitors. Prospective students want hard evidence of why a school is different and right for them, but presented as a story, not a hard sell.”

Find out how to buy a copy of the report and how to take aprt in the tenth study at carringtoncrisp.com/generationweb