Have you ever wanted to delve even deeper into the college life? Have you considered the idea of gathering all your friends, lecturers, sports coaches, and parents under one roof? Can you see yourself in the role of an ambassador for the most vivid and significant events in the life of your college or university? If YES is your answer, all you really need to do is to create a website for students – and make it so awesome that your peers drop their jaws in excitement.
This guide will teach you how to design college website.
Why making a college website anyway?
The Internet and social media have taken communication to the entirely new level. Social networks like Facebook allow you to create and join groups that unite people around shared interests, backgrounds, and goals. However, the possibilities they offer are quite limited. A comprehensive college website, on the other hand, gives a freedom needed to turn a simple group of individuals who share the passion for their alma mater into a sprawling online community capable of representing a college or university online on its own terms. Among the essential benefits to consider:
- Flexible privacy settings;
- Multiple monetization options;
- Total searchability on the Internet;
- Customized, fully individual design;
- Possibility to share different kinds of content (photos, videos, music) and run an independent blog.
With all these possibilities at hand, you can use your website to share the latest college news, encourage communication and cooperation between students, teachers, and parents, organize online and real-life events, share useful study materials, publish curricula, timetables, grades, etc.
You can even design your own sports website for the college team you play in or support. Creating a sports website is a great way to increase the efficiency of team management, facilitate communication between players, and improve the team’s image.
In other words, if you’re a student, creating a college website is a chance for you to become an essential part of the studying community, earn an outstanding reputation among your peers, and even make some extra cash.
A recipe for an awesome college website
Many used to think that creating a website is something only professional programmers and computer geeks can do. The truth is, in order to make a cool website you don’t need to know a thing about coding. All you need is a couple of like-minded friends, few days to get things up and running, and functional website-building software.
Today’s market offers plenty of website builders, but only a few of them are capable of providing enough networking features to suffice for a college website you’d be proud of. This is exactly what makes NING your preferred choice when it comes to building social networking websites.
Obviously, when you’re designing a college website, you want it to be as interactive and socially-oriented as possible. Being a platform specializing particularly in making lively online communities, NING appears to be the most suitable candidate for a role of the best college website builder at this point in time. Its essential advantages include:
- The abundance of social networking features and communication options including private and group messaging, email broadcasting, live chat, etc.;
- Simple interface that allows non-tech-savvy users to build professional websites with minimum time investments;
- Lots of easy-to-use tools required for an advanced customization of your website design;
- Several options to build a successful monetization strategy.
Besides, getting started with NING is very easy. The basic steps are described below.
- Create an account on ning.com and take a free 14-day trial
Since NING offers a free trial of its website building platform, you can check it out before you make any investments. This is a great opportunity to create a website absolutely free of charge and have a hands-on experience with NING’s trademark features.
The registration process is fairly simple and shouldn’t cause any inconveniences. You will, however, be asked to select the subscription plan at the outset and provide the details of your credit card. But the money will only be charged in 14 days, when the free trial period expires, unless you cancel the subscription.
The basic monthly fee is $25 which roughly equals the price of two movie tickets and a couple of lattes (you’ll probably spend the same amount going out with your girlfriend one night) – not anything overwhelming considering the value of the package you get. To find out what exactly you can expect for your money, check out their pricing page.
It is also worth mentioning that a native domain name (.ning.com) and hosting services are already included in the subscription plan, and you use them during the free trial as well.
A little lifehack to alleviate the burden from your wallet: NING offers several monetization options so you can try to make enough money for the annual subscription even before the free trial expires. How to monetize a website so quickly? For example, set up a “Donate” button on the homepage of your newly created website. If you have many friends or know enough people who are likely to support your initiative, you’ll collect the required amount in no time.
- Customize the design of your website
As soon as your website is created, you can proceed with its customization. NING provides users with numerous tools allowing to endow your website with a distinctive identity.
Select the most suitable website template and adjust its elements the way you see fit. You can add your college logo, change the background image, fonts, page layout, header design, etc. In a matter of minutes, the appearance of your website will be fully personalized and look truly professional.
- Set up the features you would like to use
NING offers a variety of features you will find useful for your new website: several messaging options, integration with social networks and 3rd party online services, forums, polls, blogs, groups, events, SEO, etc. Pick any of these and configure them on your website. Add as many web pages as you need and start filling them up with content. Here you go – your website is ready!
- Consider different ways of monetization
This step is purely optional and makes sense if you want your website to bring profits among other benefits. With NING, you can monetize your website in several ways:
- Paid Access;
- Paid Membership;
- Online Ads (via Google AdSense).
If you post a lot of useful articles or let other students publish news or blog posts about the life of the college, your website will inevitably start gaining popularity among your peers. This will open new opportunities for online advertisement or content monetization. For example, you can think of the ways to monetize a blog or set up paid access to specific groups on the network. The choice is all yours.
Creating a college website is a great way to engage in a college life, establish an authority among other peers, and even earn some extra money. Thanks to the advanced website building software like NING, designing a website is no longer a problem. All you really need is a little bit of free time, enthusiasm, and maybe a couple of friends to help you out. And of course, the picture wouldn’t be complete without a whiff of inspiration, few interesting ideas, and a clear artistic vision – nothing that should be a problem for you, right?