Driving School Website
In today’s digital world, a website is essential to most businesses. A driving school website will display the services you offer to anyone who uses mobile phones, tablets and desktop computers.
Today’s websites vary from bespoke built to order sites to free content management websites that cost little more than a domain name and a little time to write the content.
Upon deciding that it’s time your driving school has a website, you will need to think about how to go about it. There’s essentially two options, a free website or a website designed and built by a web design company. There are benefits to both.
Free driving school website
A free website for your driving school is beneficial as of course, it’s free. Free website builders can easily be found online. Among many others, Google offer the ability to make a free website for any business.
These websites are based on a content management system (CMS) which means that all structural building of the site is done automatically. All you need to do is add the pages you want such as the services you offer, contact pages etc. Images such as your driving school car can easily be uploaded to your website and text content is simply written and once saved, it will go live on the internet.
Although optional, it’s best to purchase your own domain name (www.example.com) as it will provide a more professional looking website, will gain a better ranking in search results and will likely gain more visitors.
The disadvantage of a free website is that they don’t usually look quite as professional and refined as a site built by a competent web design company. They can with some effort and time look perfectly acceptable however. Another issue with a free website is search engine optimisation (SEO), or rather a lack of.
If you are intending on using a free website for your driving school, some research into basic SEO is certainly advantageous as it should allow for your website to rank higher in search results for specific queries relating to people searching for driving lessons in your area. Basic SEO can easily be researched online and implemented into a website with relative ease. If you do not possess the time or inclination to do any of this, you may benefit from paying for services of a website design company.
Driving school website designers
Any reputable web design company can design your site, they do not need to be specific to the driving instruction industry. Paying a web design company for your driving school website is all well and good, but do you know if they actually are any good? Essentially, you will need to ask them for some examples of websites they have previously made, look at the design and how professional they look. More importantly however, look how well these sites rank for particular keywords such as the products or services they offer combined with the location of the business. If the SEO is not great and the sites ranking is nowhere to be seen, there’s little point in opting for a company to develop your site.
A reputable company that develops quality sites that rank well usually aren’t cheap. Avoid basing any decisions on cost alone and primarily focus on quality and SEO. Long-term it works out far cheaper to pay out good money initially for a quality site as the customers gained often come from natural search results and do not require advertising.
What are natural search results?
Natural search results, or organic search results as they are also called are displayed by a search engine because of their relevance of the search term. Natural search results do not include ads.
Some website developers charge a monthly fee stating this is for maintenance costs. If their maintenance costs include updating the site frequently with new pages, text and images, and you intend on making frequent updates, this may be of benefit. Most websites similar to small driving school websites only get updated once or twice per year, if this is the case, pay a one-off initial fee only and pay a separate fee if and when the site needs updating, this should work out cheaper.
Unlike the free websites detailed above, you will need hosting for your new site. Website hosting is basically a computer where your site resides and allows anyone around the world to connect to it via the World Wide Web. Website design companies will offer you hosting, typically free for the first year but invoice you annually for hosting fees. Web design companies frequently charge high prices for hosting and with a little searching you should be able to find far cheaper.
The downside of this however is that you will need the technical knowledge for uploading your new website to the host and connect your new site to your domain name. If that seems too technical, you’re probably best off using the web design companies hosting and paying the extra.
Best website for my driving school
Both free and bespoke SEO’d website have their own benefits. Essentially the free website will not perform as well in natural search engine results compared to a well-made site with proper SEO. The free site will likely need advertising such as Google Adwords to make it visible to potential customers. So although no upfront costs are involved, long-term advertising may need to be considered to make the site worthwhile.
A professional site with high quality search engine optimisation will over time gain better rankings in natural search results and will therefore be likely to require less revenue spent on advertising. A professionally developed driving school website is a better long-term investment, although they can be expensive. If cash flow is an issue initially, opt for the free website to run along advertising campaigns and perhaps consider a website upgrade at a later date.
- Driving school advertising – Free advice for advertising your driving school