Providers Newsletter – January 2014

Abroad101 Mid-Winter Providers Newsletter – February 2014


The new Abroad101 is now two months old! I’ve been able to connect with a number of you during the transition of ownership of Abroad101 and I am grateful for all the support we’ve received. Your well wishes for our turnaround are appreciated. The good news is, the plan is working and things are coming together! If you don’t have time to read the details, here’s the news summary “reviews up, traffic up, student inquiries up, rankings up and ad prices down!”

Monitoring your accounts on Abroad101:
You have likely noticed a nice rise in the number of prospective student inquiries coming from your listings. The site is now averaging 25 student inquiries a day. Traffic is up, that’s one reason; the second is an easier to use inquiry form on your listings page(s). You should notice that there are three options on lead type: RMI, APP and Favorite. As a reminder, these mean:
RMI = request more information, student clicks on that icon to inquire about the specific program.
Apply = student indicates that they want to apply for the program. It’s a flag as to their serious intent.
Favorite = student clicked the favorite button while browsing; providers should recognize this and respond.
We encourage you to view each of these as genuine interest in your program and we hope you will reach out to the student in the manner that they indicate.

2,000 Visitors a Day:
Traffic is rising in part to our attention to detail. We’ve been adding cities, host universities and more free listings to the site over the past month, which has created a nice lift in search engine traffic. Check your favorite study abroad search terms on your favorite search engine and you might be surprised to see now on page one, especially with long tail keywords (four and five word searches.) We are now averaging 2,000 visitors each day with 75% of our traffic being first time visitors. One measure of success comes from Alexa, which ranks sites based on web traffic volume. In the past two months,’s rank in the United States has risen from 276,934 to 45,837. Our traffic is 85% domestic and nearly half comes from university networks. This is a demonstration of our re-focus on the American college student market.

More Traffic Coming:
Abroad101’s core focus is helping American students find study abroad, volunteer and internship programs overseas. We will seek out ways to publicize our resource and draw interest both on campus through advisors and in the public eye. Last week we saw a surge in traffic from a BuzzFeed posting. Next week we plan to release The 2013 Abroad101 Study Abroad Rankings. The rankings are one of our most popular features and help students and their parents feel a little more secure in their search for an overseas experience.

Getting More from your Listings – Better Content:
In addition to our efforts to tune up the core data, we are calling on all program providers to update their listings with us and to draw reviews to their programs. Photos of students in action are quite popular with future students, as are program descriptions and details. Your Abroad101 login will allow you to access and edit your listings. If you want to change program names, add or delete programs you will need to contact us. If you need a new login or your password reset, you should also contact us. The “lost my password” function on the site is for student accounts, not administrators.

Getting More from Your Listings – Advertise:
Look though our ad guide and see how we have significantly reduced pricing. We have simplified the options and now have just three types of ads, sold on a per program per year basis. As you look to your next cycle of ad buying, we hope you’ll include upgrading your programs to our Featured Listing, Banner Ad or Global Rotation advertising categories.

Getting More from Your Listings – Draw More Reviews:
If you’re not yet ready to advertise, you can still improve the positioning of your listings by drawing reviews. Reviews will not only qualify you for our rankings, they improve your position in the program directories. While the majority of reviews are generated by advisor prompts, providers are encouraged to invite students to review their study abroad experience and don’t worry, as long as the student uses their university email account, we won’t send duplicate invitations. To send invitations to recent alumni of your program, please use the “invite” tool on your Abroad 101 account dashboard. That’s the same place you get your inquiries and where you can update your listings.

Abroad101 is on the Rise:
For me personally, the past two months has been a rewarding return to the study abroad field. All of our performance indicators are up, our tech and operations teams are getting up to speed, advertisers are renewing and new advertisers are signing up. Where does it go from here? You can read some of our vision for the future and promise to the field in this article from The PIE News:

I look forward to seeing many of you at AIEA, The Forum and NAFSA. In the meantime, your comments, questions and feedback are welcome; please do not hesitate to contact me at any time.

Thank you,

Mark Shay
+1 (610) 357-4648