In a city full of colleges, Suffolk needed to stand out.
Boston is of course jam-packed with exceptional colleges and universities. But as the only university in downtown Boston, Suffolk offers unique opportunities and unmatched connections. They needed a new website that clearly defined what makes the Suffolk experience unlike any other. Suffolk isn’t just in Boston, it is Boston.
We realized we weren’t talking to your typical college prospect.
With higher percentages of international students, first generation Americans, and students who are the first in their family to go college — the profile of a Suffolk prospect is unlike any other university. Before we could build a site that answers their questions, we needed to dig deeper to discover what they were actually looking for.
We did our homework. We got to know our higher ed audience.
Before we got too deep, we met with prospects, students, and other important stakeholders. We needed a better understanding of who they were, and why Suffolk was the right choice for them. Then we did a comprehensive website audit — assessing 3,800+ pages of content for SEO impact and to consolidate disparate experiences into a cohesive digital ecosystem.
We shared mood boards and concepts. We got back invaluable insights.
Eight rounds of usability testing helped ground our work, giving tangible input and data to guide us as we architected the new site. Utilizing a collaborative and iterative process we developed a website user experience that was built to answer the real needs of the university and their prospects. Suffolk’s CMO noticed their students were looking to connect their beliefs and aspirations to their programs of study, and challenged us to bring that to life online.
Our Program Finder connected aspirations and goals with the programs that fits them.
We built a site as hard-working as Suffolk and their students.
The new site included a CMS built with Sitecore.NET 9.0.1 to give the university a dynamic new content hub and storytelling platform. The unified ecosystem fueled ongoing marketing and analytics consistently across the university — including admissions, arts & sciences, the law school, business school, the Madrid campus and all their other programs. As we consolidated the web content, we reimagined and rearchitected the entire user experience around audience needs and goals.
We helped students find other students who faced similar challenges through the "My Suffolk Story" hub.
Suffolk now has more applicants ready to make their mark in Boston.
We can see it working because of the high level of engagement with the content — staff, alumni, and both current and future students are exploring and sharing their own unique stories. The result is a unified Sitecore and university-wide ecosystem — a connected repository and hub for all Suffolk information and content built on a new taxonomy and more efficient content governance model.
Dropping Some Data: Year One Numbers
Sessions with visits from 223 countries
Increase in application starts across 3 schools
Core Google Tag Manager elements created