Midway University is a private liberal arts school located in Midway, Kentucky, and serves approximately 1800 students through traditional classroom instruction, evening and weekend courses, and online learning opportunities. In recent years, university leadership concluded that Midway’s institutional website no longer fully reflected the spirit of the school and the broad range of flexible learning options it affords students of all ages and backgrounds. To complement an ambitious rebranding initiative, a new site was needed to engage prospective students, support enrollment, and strategically position Midway for greater levels of growth.
In 2015, Midway retained Stamats to design and develop a new university website that would feature responsive design, intuitive navigation, template-based architecture, and enhanced multimedia tools. As part of the project, Stamats conducted a thorough program assessment, integrated a new content management system (CMS), developed a customized social media strategy, and rigorously vetted new website concepts through focus group testing.
A large part of our efforts centered on helping Midway leverage Google Analytics in order to better understand and optimize site performance and improve pay-per-click (PPC) campaign response. We developed a simplified user dashboard and taught key team members how to monitor page performance in real-time, increase conversions by identifying PPC keywords, and segment audiences for more targeted messaging. Here, the goal was simple: Help Midway staff take ownership of ongoing site metrics and improve long-term marketing return on investment (ROI) through tactical, data-driven decision making.
Midway’s new site launched in September 2015 and early results are encouraging. Comparing Q1 2015 to Q1 2016, pages/sessions volume has improved by 75 percent; average session duration has increased by 118 percent; and bounce rates have declined by 23 percent. Perhaps more importantly, Midway’s marketing, recruitment, and enrollment teams are now equipped with the tools they need to better connect with their audiences, increase both the quantity and quality of leads, and constantly improve the efficacy of their efforts.