Choosing a Higher Education University is one of the most important and stressful decisions for young adults. The rising costs, website information overload, and complex application processes make it even more challenging for prospective students to navigate where to start. According to Honover data Research, up to 31% of four-year applicants abandon online college applications before they complete and submit the application form. Live chat software is increasingly being adopted by universities worldwide to address these challenges and attract interested, quality students. Chat and other conversation management technologies provide college marketers, admissions officers, and educational staff the ability to connect with prospective students from the moment a potential student lands on their institution’s web page.
Live chat plays a critical role in streamlining and simplifying the complex admissions process for students. When an applicant encounters a roadblock during the online application, they can instantly connect with college support staff via chat and receive the necessary information. This increases the chances that applicants will continue with the application and submit the online form, reducing form abandonment and resulting in increased conversion rates and application counts. Now more than ever true student connection matters.
Academic, Career Services, and Financial aid resources are more valuable than ever for prospective and current students, particularly where lower-income students are concerned. Colleges like the University of Texas address this by using live chat conversations that dispel myths and/or doubts about financial aid and provide students with comprehensive education about all available options and how to pursue them.
Marketers and admissions officers in higher education find themselves responsible for a host of metrics, including application submissions, new student enrollment counts, information requests via online forms, and campus visit signups. Live chat is increasingly being adopted as part of their overall marketing and engagement strategy, with features like advanced proactive chat to drive engagement rates with targeted messaging based on a website visitor’s current URL, location, and more. Recruiting staff have the ability to hold concurrent conversations with website visitors, resulting in a lower cost-per-interaction and decreased phone and email volumes.
A 2017 research study conducted by Unbounce found that the higher education industry has some of the lowest conversion rates across all major industries. In fact, 42% of marketers in higher education oversee at least one webpage for their education institution that converts at 1% or less. Researchers found that these low-performing pages resulted in an average of 1,734 missed conversations opportunities.
In conclusion, colleges are increasingly turning to live chat to simplify the college admissions process, improve the applicant experience, and positively impact key metrics. Live chat application and website technology provides an opportunity to engage with prospective students in real-time, address their concerns better, and offer solutions, ultimately leading to higher engagement rates and increased conversions.