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13 Strategies for Increasing Student Enrollment

Increasing student enrollment is always a top priority for schools, colleges, and online course providers, as higher enrollment brings financial stability and contributes to a vibrant and diverse learning community.

However, achieving enrollment goals requires strategic planning and effective implementation of these strategies.

Each strategy described below will explore unique ways to increase your student enrollment. From conducting a competitive analysis to leveraging innovative tools like online registration systems, we will provide actionable insights making it a valuable resource to enhance enrollment figures and overall school growth.

How to Increase Enrollment

Consider Your Audience

When aiming to increase student enrollment, it’s important to consider the specific needs and preferences of your target audience. Here’s how you can consider your audience effectively:

Do a Competitive Analysis of Other Schools

Conducting a competitive analysis allows you to identify the strengths and weaknesses of other schools and educational institutions in your area. By gaining insights into their academic programs, marketing strategies, and unique value propositions, you can position your own institution more effectively. Here are the steps to perform a comprehensive competitive analysis:

Source: bdc

  1. Identify Competitors: Begin by identifying schools or educational institutions that directly compete with yours. Of course, this initial search should be focused on your school’s academic level (e.g., elementary school, high school, higher education institution, community college, private school, etc.).
  2. Analyze Competitor Programs: Collect important details on your school’s strongest competitors, such as curriculum, teaching methods, admission process, extracurricular activities, academic advising, and any specialized features that differentiate their programs. Look for gaps or areas where your institution can provide a unique or enhanced learning experience.
  3. Evaluate your Competitors’ Strengths and Weaknesses: These are often highlighted in the reviews and comments left by various parents and parent groups on different web forums.
  4. Identify your School’s Competitive Advantage: Highlight your school’s unique strengths. This could include specialized programs, distinguished faculty members, state-of-the-art facilities, or a nurturing learning environment.

When done properly, a competitive analysis of other schools in your area will provide invaluable insight into what competition your school is facing and what strategies it should use to increase student enrollment.

Leverage Online Registration

Online registration can be a powerful tool for courses to increase enrollment in several ways:

Create After-School Programs for Students

A great after-school program can attract new students and their parents/caregivers to your school, i.e., increase student enrollment.

Studies show that extracurricular programs significantly improve students’ attendance and academic performance while strengthening their future college applications.

The types of after-school programs your school should go for will depend on the students’ interests and preferences, as well as your school’s budget.

The list of potential programs is endless, but we have compiled a list of 12 of the best activities for after-school programs

With so many possibilities, it’s important to survey the students’ interests and research your competition to see which programs would bring the most value to your school’s students and distinguish it from other schools.

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Offer Flexible Payment Options

Regpack’s integrated payment processing capabilities enable you to offer flexible payment options to prospective students and their families. Implement payment plans, discounts, or scholarships to make your courses more accessible. By removing financial barriers, you can attract a wider range of students and increase enrollment.

Early Bird Discounts and Limited-Time Offers

Another effective strategy is to encourage early enrollment by offering exclusive discounts or limited-time offers. Create a sense of urgency and reward proactive students and their families for choosing your courses in advance. These incentives can help drive early-enrollment and increase overall school enrollment rates.

Be Active in Your Local Community

As the majority of prospective students will come from local communities in the areas surrounding the schools, it’s logical that schools should build a great reputation in those communities to increase student enrollment.

In other words, your school should be active locally, both by hosting its own events and participating in community events such as fairs, festivals, and parades.

Another activity your local community will surely appreciate is volunteering in charity events like fundraisers, park cleanups, donating to food banks, tree planting, etc.

Similar to after-school programs, such activities not only bring invaluable experiences to students but also help the community and enhance your school’s recognition and reputation, like in this example.

Source: Greenfield Reporter

One more thing: whenever your school participates in local community events, it should ensure that its brand is visible. For instance, students involved in volunteering should wear school colors (caps, t-shirts, hoodies, etc.).

This is an effective marketing strategy for building a great reputation and increasing student enrollment.

Ensure Your School Appears in Local Searches

Of course, as we’ll discuss below, having a school website is a must.

However, even the best website won’t do much to increase student enrollment if prospective students and their families can’t find it.

Luckily, there is a free and quick way to ensure your school will show up in location-specific searches and maps, and that’s to register your school on Google Business Profile.

Source: Google

This free Google service will allow potential students, as well as their parents/guardians, and family members to find your school when they search for schools in their local area.

The registration process usually takes about 15-20 minutes if you’re entering the basic info about your school. It might take a bit more if you want to add more content, such as photos, posts, upcoming events, or video content to your school’s business profile.

Overall, ensuring your school appears in local searches by registering on Google Business Profile is a free, easy, and quick way to raise the school’s visibility in your local community.

Build a Great School Website

As said above, building a great school website is an essential digital marketing strategy for attracting more students and parents to your school.

The content on your school’s website should be optimized for search engines to rank higher in organic search when potential clients look up, for instance, “schools near me.” This step will involve extensive keyword research to find relevant words you want to optimize your website for.

Additionally, the website should be optimized for mobile devices, meaning that its contents should be equally well displayed whether parents and students access it over their smartphone, laptop, desktop, or tablet.

As for your school’s search engine optimization (SEO) efforts and what that would entail, there’s simply not enough room here to address them, but you can learn more in an article shown below, courtesy of SchoolMint.

Source: SchoolMint

Optimizing your school website for SEO should be added to your marketing plan to increase student enrollment.

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Automate Your Lead Nurturing Emails

Even though your school website might be well-optimized enough to attract potential students and parents to visit it, that doesn’t mean your efforts will translate into more enrollments.

In other words, when potential clients visit the school website, they should be compelled to volunteer their contact information, which can then be used to build relationships with them by sending lead-nurturing emails like educational offers, reminders, or shorter blog posts.

That way, if your school has, for example, 25 new first-grade seats, you will already have a list of potential candidates who are familiar with and interested in enrolling their first graders.

Once you have their info, your school can automate sending lead nurturing emails to prospective clients, thus building relationships with them in advance and creating solid foundations for increasing student enrollment.

Have an Active Social Media Presence

Since almost all students and parents use social media nowadays, having an active social media presence is a must for increasing student enrollment, as it can help schools present what they’re about and attract more attention from potential clients.

In other words, schools can use their social media accounts on, for example, Instagram, Facebook, or TikTok, to share their story and post content (e.g., text, videos, images) that showcases what they offer to students and their parents.

Here’s an example.

Source: Instagram

When it comes to the type of content your school should post, the best results for increasing student enrollment are achieved through a combination of posts, videos, and images generated by the school and its followers, i.e., students and parents.

Ask Families to Review Your School Online

Consequently, asking them to review your school online is a great way to boost student enrollment, as good reviews, testimonials, and success stories provide social proof that your school is their best option.

In fact, online reviews can be considered a subcategory of the most powerful marketing strategy across all sectors—word-of-mouth referrals.

Simply put, when deciding on something, people overwhelmingly prefer to rely on the input and experiences of their families and friends.

Your Google Business Profile and/or Facebook Business Page can also be counted as review sites, so responding to both positive and negative reviews posted on them should be among your priorities.

Survey Families at the End of Each School Year

Last but not least, your school should survey existing students and their families at the end of each school year as a way of gaining valuable insights about what needs to be improved to increase student enrollment.

First, even the current students attending your school can leave if they or their parents are unsatisfied, which can also cause problems when trying to attract new students.

Therefore, it’s better to conduct regular end-of-school-year family satisfaction surveys to determine what your school is doing right and what aspects could be improved.

Such honest feedback can provide valuable insights into what needs to be improved for students and parents to be more satisfied.

Of course, following through on those improvements will raise the overall quality of services your school provides and ultimately increase student enrollment.


Overall, these 14 strategies for increasing student enrollment can seem like a lot to handle.

However, your school can start slowly by selecting those you find relevant while being mindful of the fact that attracting new students is, just like education, a long process that can be accelerated by strategically employing these tips.

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