A website is the gatekeeper for your centre. It is a display of what makes you stand out from the others.
First impressions are everything, you must always be ready to wow your prospects. Businesses of all shapes and sizes compete online, and the childcare industry is no exception.
But – there is never enough time in a day to start thinking about it.
In this blog, we explore why your lack of time is precisely the reason why you should prioritise your centre’s website, and we share how this can be done quickly, easily and effectively.
Even if your centre is at capacity, the right online presence will help to give you the ability to continue to improve your facilities, staff ratios, and educator retention rates.
Here’s a quick summary of how a great website helps a childcare centre
- Attracts professional carers by highlighting your philosophy and standards of care that resonate with prospective employees that will compliment the current team.
- Helps with compliance with National Quality Standards by increasing the accessibility of information about policies, procedures, and day-to-day operations.
- Acts as a receptionist, all day, every day, giving you time back in your day, by giving them access to the information they need online.
- A website is a childcare centre’s biggest advocate, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. A family’s recommendation will leave the prospective family excited by their initial contact with the centre.
- Establishes trust with parents and the community by providing transparent and upfront information about the childcare centre.
If you are sold on the idea of a great website for your childcare centre, but don’t know where to start, skip ahead to the dark blue section below. To explore the benefits a great website brings to childcare centres in more detail, read on…
1. Compliance with National Quality Standards
Having your policies and procedures on your website means they are easily accessible to every family with a few clicks of a button.
- No more searching your computer drives and arch folders for the latest policy when a parent requests a policy.
- Save time with fewer emails going out, and easy access for staff to find the policy they need, when they need it.
- Gather community involvement by sharing events and news through your blogs.
The information on your website will help tick a few more boxes in your Quality Improvement Plan.
- Communicate your community involvement by sharing events and news through your blogs.
- Enable greater connections between your staff and families through a teams page, helping parents to make the connection between their kids’ stories and their educators.
2. Attract professional educators
Educators will be reviewing your online presence when making decisions about prospective roles. Having a professional website could be the difference between taking the job at your centre and the one down the road.
Your website will help prospective educators to see and understand your centre’s culture before they start, helping to get the right fit for your team.
3. Your 24/7 receptionist
How many times does a “quick question” turn into a 20-minute conversation?
Your website gives families a way to easily find the information they need, such as operating times, fees, policies, facilities and your menu.
By reducing the number of phone calls and emails you receive and deal with every day, you will gain back valuable time, allowing you to get through the rest of your ever-growing “to do” list.
4. Your marketing partner
Families are your best advocates. They will tell everyone who will listen how much their kids love going there, how they cry when it’s time to go home, and maybe even tell their closest friends their child calls someone “mummy” there.
A well crafted website will give those parents the tool they need to close the deal for you.
When friends and families can confidently take out their phone and show photos of the centre and share a story about an educator’s relationship with their child, your job is 80% done – and you haven’t spoken to them yet!
What should you include on your centre’s website?
Here’s a list of the information your childcare website should have. Make sure it’s easy for current families to find, and keep it up to date with regular news and updates about events you have held.
- Room overview
- Fee summary
- Contact details
- Contact form
- Team information
- Testimonials (from parents and kids!)
- Operating hours
- Centre’s philosophy and policies
- Gallery of photos
- News and information (through a blog)
A successful childcare website will enable current families to easily access important information such as opening hours, team members and centre policies.
More than that – it will help you to lift your profile, increase occupancy and help you attract and retain quality staff.