If looking around a high school campus is any indication, more and more individuals are turning to smartphones as their primary method of communication and interaction with the world around them. As more teachers, parents, and students say goodbye to feature phones and choose smartphones instead, they have the ability to do much more than send texts or make phone calls. This includes searching for and consuming information.
Keeping students and parents updated with news and school alerts
allows school officials to foster communication and ensure everyone is on the same page.
It is important for schools and school districts to establish a strong mobile presence with a website and a smartphone app that are informative, useful, and user friendly. Responsive mobile sites and a comprehensive app with SchoolInfoApp bring together all of the features schools and districts need in order to provide a valuable resource for staff members, students, and families. These tools keep individuals engaged and make it easier for them to find the information they seek.
What Are Responsive Mobile Sites?
A responsive mobile site, put simply, is your school’s website sized to fit the small screens of smartphones and tablets. Whereas your desktop website, or “full version,” was designed to show information on a set screen size that is larger, a responsive mobile site makes necessary adjustments to ensure your content is readable on a mobile device.
In the past, your website provider would need to spend time designing and coding a site that was sized for each individual device to access. As a matter of fact, it is very likely most school and district websites are still not responsive, because there hasn’t been a need to change providers or incur the cost of a redesign.
However, it is a costly and time-consuming process to have to constantly adjust website size and functionality, especially as mobile device manufacturers continue to adjust screen sizes with new products. With more of your students and their parents using a smartphone to access your website to check such things as grade reports and upcoming events, it is vitally important to have a site that clearly and easily provides the experience your visitors expect.
A responsive mobile site automatically resizes once detecting the resolution and display parameters of the device used to view it. Rather than having to scroll, zoom, or swipe around your site to find what they need, visitors are taken to a website that gives them everything they need with the press of a finger.
The result is a crisper site that is easy to navigate on a smartphone and tablet. According to Smart Insights
, there are now more users around the world that access the Internet through a mobile device in comparison to a desktop computer.
Reasons to Incorporate a Responsive Mobile Site
In addition to improving the user experience for those looking for information on your school’s website, a responsive mobile site also provides your team with key features that help accomplish your communication goals. As you work to ensure that your school’s students are up-to-date on their assignments, and their parents are informed about everything happening, a responsive mobile site helps your staff work faster and more efficiently.
Here are some of the reasons to incorporate a responsive mobile site into your IT and communications plans:
Mobile Solutions for Schools and Districts
- User Friendly – As mentioned previously, a responsive mobile site is much easier to use on a smartphone or tablet. Making the process of finding information and communicating with the school or district as simple as possible keeps students, parents, and staff engaged and helps streamline the process of disseminating information to all of your audiences.
- Preferred by Google – According to the Huffington Post more than half of all local searches in 2012 were made using a mobile device, and the numbers have surely gone up since then. Google prefers responsive mobile sites as part of your overall website strategy because, in essence, you only have one website that the search engine needs to index. By removing the extraneous versions, Google is assured that it presents a user with the most accurate information when they search for your school.
- Cost-Effective – While you may need to make an investment now to create a responsive site, you save money in the long run with reduced site maintenance and content needs.
A responsive website is one way to communicate with staff and students more effectively. Going a step further and creating a mobile app for your school or district gives you even more opportunity to engage the community. Having an app removes a step when it comes to people looking for information.
Instead of opening a mobile browser and searching for the name of your school, a parent can open your app straight from their phone’s home screen and, with a few button presses, see exactly when the next PTA meeting or football game will take place. School alerts send out notifications and reminders to make the process even easier.
While a responsive website is essential for schools and districts, an app allows highly active individuals such as teachers and students to have a resource, and improve the value and quality of education being received.
Mobile apps designed for schools combine all of the features needed for educators to improve stakeholder communication. They also keep the school or district up to speed with current technology and ensure all of the information people need is in one place.
SchoolInfoApp is the industry leader in mobile app development and management for schools and districts, and it has a partnership with eSchoolView. By working with eSchoolView on your responsive mobile site, you can also take advantage of all that SchoolInfoApp has to offer.
Intuitive Features of SchoolInfoApp
The SchoolInfoApp platform is beneficial for schools and districts because it provides leaders with a robust mobile app solution without the time and labor requirements of other systems. Content automation takes everything on your website, such as calendars, contact information, and social media posts, and packages it nicely for mobile users.
School administrators also benefit from having a team that handles all of the setup, design, programming, and publishing processes to ensure the app runs as it should and always features the most current and relevant content. The finished product is a free download that students, parents, and staff can easily use on an everyday basis.
From a student perspective, academic organization can be greatly improved with an app powered by SchoolInfoApp. Administrators and teachers can send out notifications to keep them updated on important announcements or assignment changes, while a My Assignments digital planner allows students to easily keep track of upcoming tests and projects.
The My ID feature gives students a digital ID card right on their phone, eliminating the costs associated with printing a physical card and having to reprint if it gets lost. Students also have access to a tip line to communicate safely and securely with administrators when reporting instances of bullying, cheating, or criminal activity.
Parents can subscribe to receive push notifications for school alerts and have easy access to contact information for the school, teachers, and social media profiles. There is also the ability to subscribe to campus calendars, athletic team schedules, and other school events. With links to grades, school resources, and other information, your school’s app will keep your entire community connected.
Learn more about how a responsive website and a comprehensive mobile app will take your school or district into the 21st century by calling an eSchoolView representative today at 888-932-6460.
1. Smart Insights
2. Huffington Post