Ayrshire College

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Ayrshire College

Project Information

Categories: Education

Released: 02/09/2014

Link: www1.ayrshire.ac.uk/

Ayrshire College operating since 2013 plays a key role in the community by ensuring that students develop the right skills and positive attitudes essential to succeed in later life.

The Zen Agency was commissioned to produce a website which would act as a one-stop, interactive resource for existing students and staff while providing a platform on a simple CMS which would allow them the ability to market out their variety of courses to both school leavers and businesses seeking further education for staff members. The new platform had to be responsive and be fully integrated with a variety of internal and external systems such as Unit E. 

The need for data migration and integrated single sign-on was also high on the priority list for Ayrshire College. 

User research

We undertook a variety of different research meetings with key stakeholders to gain a greater understanding of how the college operates and gain an insight into what specific things were currently working and not working on their web platform.

Course Search

In order to coincide with the goal of increasing course enquiries we implemented an intelligent reactive course search. This search worked in a manner where it would utilise previously searched terms from users ensuring the most relevant results were returned in the quickest and most convenient manner for students. 


An area which was of particular importance to Ayrshire College was improving student acquisition and increasing course enquiries through the website. As such we designed a visually stunning website on a flexible framework that allowed Ayrshire to showcase key content with no specific technical knowledge. 


The website was fully responsive across all platforms and devices. 


Operating in the education sector accessibility was of particular importance to Ayrshire College. The site was built to W3C standards to ensure the maximum number of people could access the website with no issues. 


The new website was developed on the .NET Umbraco CMS.


One of the main challenges we faced was the integration of the website with capita UNIT-e which allows specific course information to be pulled into the website. As experts in integration our developers will able to provide a stable solution with this integration through the Umbraco CMS. This allows all relevant course information to be pulled into the website and presented to students in a consistent way regardless of the device being used. 

Social Media

Social media plays a key role within Ayrshire College allowing them to quickly and easily talk to Staff, Students and Parents. The new site is fully integrated with their social channels This allows the targeted groups to get the required information without ever leaving the website and makes instant communication easy. 


We considered SEO from the very beginning of the project ensuring all key landing pages were available within a minimum number of clicks. In addition we performed keyword research and basis on page SEO for the key course pages to increase the organic traffic which the site received. 


Let the numbers do the talking


Increase in mobile visits


Increase in visitors to news section


Users of intuitive course search
Ayrshire College

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