At Full Steam we love to design websites, and it helps us design great websites to spend time looking at the best websites in a particular sector .
When planning and designing business websites it can be helpful to look at other agencies work and critique it. You can learn what other people do well, and by picking out what they could do better you get better yourself at critiquing your own work.
RTO Website Design
Since we focus on Australian RTOs I’ve been checking out many RTO website designs, and I’d like to share the best with you and talk a little about what’s great and what could be done to add even more polish.
Here are some of the best RTO websites we’ve come across recently, along with what we really like about them and what we humbly think they could do better.
Major Training offer vehicle and plant training and certifications.
What’s great about this website
This website is bright and visually appealing, which will help it stand out in a industry that too often focuses purely on function with little thought to form.
It presents the company as being progressive (modern design) and professional (works well and content is very good quality)
The content is laid out well and it’s an interesting site to browse around. They also do a good job of providing the key information that their visitors want to see, like information about government funding,
What Major Training could improve.
They don’t have a blog which would help them get found by more prospects, and improve engagement and conversions.
They could make it clearer what they are all about from the minute a visitor lands on the home page. Using a Unique Value Proposition can help, or by answering the Who, What, and Why.
- What do you do?
- Who do you do it for?
- Why do you do it?
Hard questions, yes, but if you can get them right they can be really attractive to the right people and can keep away the people who are not a good fit.
Capital Training Institute
CTI is an RTO specialising in the construction industry.
What CTI are doing well
Their website is very easy to navigate and the information is presented very clearly.
What I like best about it is the home page, where you can see all the critical information and you can instantly see what they are about and why you should use them.
Their tagline “Where Top Tradies Become Top Builders” is very concise, clear and powerful as it speaks right to the needs of a very clearly defined section of the market; tradies who want to make the next move in their career.
This answers the Who, What, How, Why very well;
- Who – high quality tradies
- What – training
- Why – to become high quality builders
It shows contact details clearly, and does a great job of segmenting the visitors allowing them to either select a course right away or choose their own industry and read more targeted content written just for them.
They have a blog and include a Call-to-action on every page.
What Capital Training could do to improve
The blog Call-to-action dives right into course selection which is too much too soon for some visitors, as they may only be researching their options and problems (Awareness and Consideration stages of the buyers journey). I would create another CTA which is more suitable for people in the earlier stages of the buyers journey. That should help convert people who are not yet ready for conversations about courses.
Australian RTO focusing on aged care, disability, first aid courses
What InterCare have done well
I really like this website, as it’s fun and happy without being dumb or condescending at all.
The design is first rate, and what I like most about it is that it’s very human and the black and white photos of all the care staff and residents really shows character.
The coloured bubbles are great ways to get key points across and they also match the logo perfectly, which re-enforces the brand through the site.
They have a good enquiry form on the home page which does a good job of segmenting enquiries.
What they could improve
Blogging would work well for the too, as would talking more about the Who, What, Why. They could call that out on their home page, and since it’s clear they are passionate about what they do they may want to consider a page dedicated to their passion for their work.
Their menu also has some links going to a different website, and while that’s not in itself a problem (our website also does that – our home page is www.fullsteam.com.au while our blog is hub.fullsteam.com.au), but if doing that you should consider creating a completely matching menu on the other site as well.
It can be confusing for visitors to click a menu link and get whisked off to another site with no obvious way back. Don’t rely on people click the Back button on their browser as not everyone will.
Airline Academy of Australia
RTO website offering aircraft maintenance engineering courses.
What is working well
The whole of this site is set up to appeal to their customers (current and future airline engineers).
The design flows out from their logo (very “big airline” look feel ) and is supported by perfectly matched colours and very well chosen pictures (this is much harder to do than you may expect).
You know what they do from the moment you land on this site, and the first impression is outstanding.
They use strong wording to get across their beliefs and values “We’re a training school that puts substance at the forefront of what we do, resulting in exceptional quality training that’s recognised throughout the aviation industry”.
If you are in their market I’m sure you care very much about top quality training that’s well recognised.
The inner pages flow well and match the design.
What Airline Academy could do better
Their enquiry form on the home page is quite long and this may be increasing friction and dissuading people from signing up. It probably does a good job of qualifying prospects though so this would have to be tested.
Again they don’t have a blog. If I were interested in doing any of their courses I would certainly be doing research and blogs would be my first choice of content. This is a way to capture peoples interest before they drift onto another path or to a competitor.
Summary; 4 great RTO Websites
Even though I looked for and found things to improve on, that doesn’t make any of these websites flawed. There’s no such thing as a perfect website and web design is best thought of as an ongoing project of tweaking and improving to move your RTO in line with customer wants and needs.
If you can make your own website into a portal for your customers to come to and find content to help them with their problems then you will have a great resource for lead generation for the future.
Don’t just build a fancy digital flyer like every one else; build something that is of value to your customers in and of itself.