Top 5 PPC tips to increase driving school sales

  • March 15th, 2019
  • in Marketing
  • By Steve Jones
Top 5 PPC tips to increase driving school sales

Would you like to drive more sales at your driving school? Well, you can if you follow my PPC tips that have been successfully tried and tested. Once you launch your own PPC campaigns, you can sit back and then watch your driving school sales grow, especially in the busy summer months.

What is PPC?

PPC tips Drive Scout

In very basic terms, PPC stands for pay-per-click. However, the science of PPC can be daunting, that’s for sure. According to Google, when you purchase a PPC ad, your driving school will “be seen by customers at the very moment that they’re searching on Google for the things you offer.”

You will only pay when the customer clicks to visit your website or calls in. There are many pay-per-click platforms you can use, but the most popular are Google AdWords, Bing Ads and Facebook. Each platform has its own rules and regulations, so keep reading my PPC tips to make your road to success less bumpy and nerve-wracking.

PPC tips for driving schools: It pays to advertise online!

According to Digital Marketing Pro, there are many benefits of PPC marketing, but below are the most valuable for driving school owners.

  • Fast results
  • Measurable results
  • Reach the right audience
  • Take advantage of business opportunities
  • Announce sales promotions
  • Brand recognition

PPC ads can be launched quickly and the results can be very impressive. I’ve run a variety of PPC ads with an average budget of $1,000 per month. They generated $12-$28 in sales for every $1 we spent on Google PPC. Impressive results? You bet! It really does pay to advertise online.

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PPC Tips for driving schools – Google AdWords is powerful!

PPC tips Google Adwords

Google’s magic happens when you type in something in the search bar and something 100% relevant, local and meaningful shows up. Your own driving school’s website should include relevant keywords like “driving school,” “drivers ed,” “driving lessons,” etc. on the appropriate pages.

Over time, you should see organic traffic, but it could take a really long time. To drive more customers to your website more quickly, driving school PPC ads on Google AdWords are great options!

PPC tips for driving schools – #1: Google Search ads

PPC tips search ads

There are many different types of PPC ads, but the two most popular on Google are search and display. Driving schools are local, so the search ad option will produce the best results. When potential customers search for “driving schools” or “driving schools near me,” your paid search ad should display on the first page.

According to Google AdWords…

With billions of searches per day on Google, you can use search ads to make sure potential customers notice your brand, consider your offerings, and take action.

Carefully choose your audience

With Google Search ads, you will reach the right customer at the time they need your driving school services. Of all my PPC tips, this one is the most important…

Your Google Search ad should not just reach the right people at the right time, it should also spur them to make a purchase. After all, you want more sales, not just more website visitors, right? Right!

In order to run a successful Google search ad, you must choose your audience carefully. For more information about choosing the right audience, check out this page on Google Ads Help.

Google Search ad category for driving schools

After you select the right audience, you’ll need to select a campaign type. The campaign type that works best for driving schools is Search Network. That’s because the targeting options let you strategically show your message to potential customers at the right place and the right time.

Ads in a “Search Network only” campaign appear near Google search results and other Google sites when people search for terms that are relevant to your ad’s keywords. For example, you own or manage a local driving school. A “Search Network only” campaign lets you show your text ads to high-potential customers right when they’re searching for “driving school,” “drivers ed,” “defensive driving” or “driving lessons.” You pick the relevant keywords and monthly budget.

Running a Google Search ad is #1 of all my PPC tips for driving schools.

PPC tip for driving schools: Put 40% of your PPC budget towards Google Search ads

PPC tips for driving schools – #2: Google Remarketing Ads

PPC tips Google remarketing

What is remarketing? It’s a way to reconnect with people who previously interacted with your driving school’s website.  You can strategically position your ads in front of these audiences as they browse Google or its partner websites, thus helping you increase your brand awareness or remind those audiences to make a purchase.

Benefits of Google remarketing ads

Whether you’re looking to drive sales activity or promote awareness of your driving school, remarketing can be a strategic component of your advertising. Below are a few benefits of using remarketing:

  • Prompt reach/well-timed targeting: You can show your ads to people who’ve previously interacted with your driving school right when they’re searching elsewhere and are more likely to make a purchase. You can also help customers find you by showing them your ads when they are actively looking for your driving school on Google Search.
  • Focused advertising: You can create remarketing lists to advertise for specific cases. For example, you may create a remarketing list targeted for people who added something to their shopping cart but didn’t complete a transaction.
  • Large-scale reach: You can reach people on your remarketing lists across their devices as they browse over 2 million websites and mobile apps.
  • Efficient pricing: You can create high-performance remarketing campaigns with automated bidding. Real-time bidding calculates the optimal bid for the person viewing your ad, helping you win the ad auction with the best possible price. There’s no extra cost to use Google’s auction.
  • Easy ad creation: Produce text, image, and video ads for free with Ad gallery. Combine a dynamic remarketing campaign with Ad gallery layouts to scale beautiful ads across all of your products or services.
  • Campaign statistics: You’ll have reports of how your campaigns are performing, where your ads are showing, and what price you’re paying.

To learn more about how to setup a Google AdWords remarketing ad, head to the Google Help Center.

PPC tip for driving schools: Put 20% of your PPC budget towards Google remarketing ads

PPC tips for driving schools – #3: Facebook Conversion Ads

In the past, I tried most Facebook ad formats. Through trial and tribulation, we narrowed them down to two: Conversion ads and boosts.

What is a Facebook conversion ad?

PPC tips Drive Scout

The Facebook website conversion objective helps you grow business on your driving school website. Whether you want page visits, sales or another action, website conversion ads encourage people to go to your website and do something.

Successful Facebook conversion ads for driving schools

Run Facebook ads in March, April, May, June and July. Why is that? The fish are biting! Most teens want to take Driver’s Ed in the summer when school is out of session. Parents begin researching driving schools in March and continue to search for summer classes through the end of July or the beginning of August. They see your conversion ads when they are in the market to make a purchase. Common sense, right?

How to optimize Facebook conversion ads

Before you start designing or running PPC ads, you will need to install pixels on your website. The pixels enable you to track your sales from each platform. Click here for instructions on how to implement the Facebook pixel on your driving school website.

Create your targeted audience

Because of its in-depth targeting features, Facebook is a great choice for driving schools. We recommend the below parameters to narrowly define who would see your Facebook conversion ads.

  • Females age 36-54
  • Live within 10 miles of your locations
  • Has high school children
  • Homeschoolers

You don’t want your Facebook conversion ad to show to everyone in your community. That’s why it’s critically important to take full advantage of Facebook’s targeting methods.

Link your ad to the right web page

Finally, it’s very important to link your ad to the most relevant page on your website. For example, if you run a Driver’s Ed Facebook conversion ad, do not link it to your home page. Instead, when people clicked on your ad, direct them to the Driver’s Ed page on your website.

PPC tip for driving schools: Put 10% of your PPC budget towards Facebook conversion ads

PPC tips for driving schools – #4: Facebook Remarketing Ads

PPC tips Facebook remarketing

Like Google’s remarketing ads, Facebook remarketing ads show to people who visited your website but did not make a purchase. These ads serve to remind your potential customers of your services and urge them to make a purchase.

According to Wordstream, remarketing ads do the following…

For those of you unfamiliar, remarketing works by following your leads around the web with related offers. When a user visits your website, they are “cookied” or tagged. To remarket to these visitors, a code is placed on the page that the user visits, which then triggers your ads to follow that cookied user around the web, whether that be on a social media site or on various websites across the internet.

So when you see ads on the sidebars or top banners of other sites of the new dining set you just browsed on Pottery Barn, this isn’t a coincidence or “fate,” it’s remarketing.

Of all my PPC tips for driving schools, Facebook remarketing ads work best in the spring and summer months. They can deliver a whopping 30:1 return on investment (ROI), meaning that for every $1 you spend on Facebook remarketing ads, they return $30 in revenue. That’s amazing, right? Yes, it is!

PPC tip for driving schools: Put 20% of your PPC budget towards Facebook remarketing ads

PPC tips for driving schools – #4: Bing PPC Ads

PPC tips Bing ads

Yes, the majority of your customer base uses Google to search for local products and services. However, Bing has a loyal audience that’s growing. In fact, Bing grew to 19.7% of the USA search market in 2018.

Plus, Bing doesn’t charge nearly as much as Google to run ads. Because of its lower cost and loyal audience, Bing PPC ads often produce a higher return on investment.

Our best Bing ads produced a return on investment (ROI) of 40:1, meaning for every $1 we spent on Bing ads, they produced $40 in revenue. Did I hear a “WOW”?

Less competition on Bing

Another reason why Bing ads are successful is that there are fewer competitors. Most driving schools choose only Google ads. That means your Bing PPC ad will stand out more because the field is less crowded.

Better positioning and a lower cost per click make Bing a little more appealing for the budget-conscious driving school. Of all my PPC tips, advertising on Bing may be the most cost effective with the biggest bang for your buck.

PPC tip for driving schools: Put 10% of your PPC budget towards Bing ads

In Review: PPC tips for driving schools

The world of PPC can be a daunting one, but it doesn’t have to be. If you follow my below PPC tips, your driving school should see a strong ROI if you run the below pay-per-click ads.

  • Google Search ads (40% of your PPC budget)
  • Google Remarketing ads (20% of your PPC budget)
  • Facebook Conversion ads (10% of your PPC budget)
  • Facebook Remarketing ads (20% of your PPC budget)
  • Bing ads (10% of your PPC budget)

About the Author: Steve Jones, CEO at Drive Scout

In 2009, I opened my first driving school with a $15,000 loan, used office equipment and my Honda Accord from college. Within three years, we hit one million in sales and were growing rapidly. After being unable to find a customized software solution to help us scale, I partnered with a brilliant engineer and built Drive Scout. Soon thereafter, I stepped down as CEO and started working full time on Drive Scout. I created this blog to share my experiences (both good and bad) to hopefully help your company become more profitable and easier to manage. Enjoy and thanks for reading!

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