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How to optimise your website to recruit successfully after lockdown

Make the most of your website’s features to help you successfully recruit new Scout members and leaders after Lockdown when Scouting returns in September.

30th July 2020
Scouting and other youth activities have been given the go-ahead to return & hold face-to-face meetings, with many set to begin again in September.

We’ve already taken a look at how you can prepare for the return to in-person scouting again in our previous blog, and this week we’ll be looking at how you can begin recruiting again using your website.

Many members may have dropped off with the introduction of virtual Scouting over the past few months. This may be due to limited finances or lack of engagement and interest, some may be due to transfer Sections, or you may just need to boost recruitment in general. Take a look at our tips on how to optimise your website in order to help your recruitment efforts.

Make your Group information easily accessible

Believe it or not, one of the most common reasons for difficulty in recruiting, is the lack of information readily available to your users. If your users can’t find information such as location information, meeting days or time, how to join and how to contact you, within a couple of clicks, they will have lost interest and head off your website to find information elsewhere. This can result in a missed opportunity to recruit a new potential member to another Group, if not altogether.

Make the main information easily visible or clickable from your homepage. Use elements such as a Join enquiry or Contact form to provide your users with an easy way to get in touch. Add a map to your contact page to show your location, or add a Group Finder to your District website with results depending on proximity to your user’s postcode search. These are just a few solutions to boost your Group’s online presence.

You can find more information on how to streamline your website to make accessing important information here.

Digitise some of your face-to-face facilities

The guidelines suggest minimising Group sizes and unnecessary physical contact as much as possible. This could also extend to extra meetings, facilities or activities that could still take place online. Many Groups may have found that certain virtual adaptations have proven beneficial to them and will likely to continue after face-to-face Scouting has resumed.

Why not take facilities such as your Group, District or County shop online? With some of our plans, you can add an eCommerce Shop to your website. This gives you the ability to sell items such as uniform, badges, gifts, equipment and other Scouting items online through your website.

You could also move your subscription payments, donations, HQ and equipment bookings, and event bookings and payments all online!

Take your website to the next level with an integrated online shop. You can sell all kinds from badges and uniform, to event tickets and merchandise.

Take your website to the next level with an integrated online shop. You can sell all kinds from badges and uniform, to event tickets and merchandise.

Have a dedicated space for recruiting Adult Volunteers

You can’t run a Group without a few key members, and they are your adult volunteers! By adding a dedicated space for important information, prospective new members/leaders will easily be able to enquire for more information, sign up to volunteer or find out more.

You never know, you might even inspire a few parents of potential young members to become volunteers whilst they are signing up their child!

Think of what information you would have wanted to know before signing up and make this readily available. You can also use the same join form for both young people and adult volunteers to streamline the process and improve User Experience, hopefully increasing your chances of recruiting new volunteers.

Find out more about Scout Group websites here