Driving schools play an essential role in teaching new drivers how to navigate Australian roads safely.
As a result, the industry has and will continue to experience steady growth in the future. This growth opens opportunities for talented driving instructors to wow their customers and build a brand within a typically fragmented industry.
However, to achieve this feat, you’ll need to optimize the aspects covered in this post, such as marketing, market research, securing financing and more.
Tips For Improving Your Australian Driving School
To help your driving school become the best it can be, focus on implementing these tips:
- Automate as much as you can: Automation saves you time and money that can be better spent on other aspects of your business. For example, automation can help you speed up administration tasks such as scheduling lessons or sending invoices to clients.
- Limit the services you offer: it’s better to focus on just a few services and become a specialist at them. This strategy helps you attract customers who want the best outcome for that particular service. It also improves your marketing conversions as you’ll be targeting specific customers rather than a general group.
- Use Google Analytics: Google Analytics can unveil customer information such as the most popular search terms that brought them to your website, which of your pages are driving the most traffic and more. This information can show you what to focus on and which marketing strategies to stop.
Traits of Good Driving Instructors
Top driving instructors in Australia are hardworking and put their customers first. In particular, these traits are common among good instructors:
- Clear communication
Qualifications For Australian Driving Instructors
Certain states may require additional qualifications. However, these are the general requirements you’ll need to become a driving instructor:
- Unrestricted drivers’ license with driving experience.
- State-issued driving instructor’s license.
- Driving instructors qualification such as a Certificate IV In Transport and Logistics.
- Working With Children Card (if you wish to teach clients who are under 18).
Conducting Market Research For Your Driving School
Since driving schools are a niche business, there isn’t much information available about the industry.
To get around this, you can:
- Join professional associations: Associations like ADTA and PDE help driving instructors to stay abreast of changes within the industry and provide resources to improve their skills.
- Research top driving schools: Look at the type of services these schools provide and what makes them successful. You can also find reviews about these companies, which can show you what they’re doing right, as well as how you can do better than them.
- Interact with your prospects: You can start your own Facebook group or join another social group on Twitter or even browse Reddit or Quora for relevant threads. These platforms give you direct access to the thoughts of your prospects.
Outlook For Driving Schools in Australia
The driving school industry is typically made up of small businesses (one or two employees) and is expected to enjoy 7% growth between 2020 and 2025.
Facts About the Australian Driving School Sector
- The average rate for a driving lesson is around $50 per hour, with the average yearly earnings around $60-70k for sole proprietors in Victoria. These earnings are slightly lower in other states but can become significantly higher if you employ multiple instructors.
- Only 38% of driving instructors work full-time hours.
- The average driving instructor age is 52 years, with 73% of workers aged 45 years or older.
Marketing Ideas For Driving Schools
- Partner with local high schools: You can find local students who have just received their learner’s license, which can set you up with long-term students. It may also be beneficial to offer discounts to encourage participation.
- Create a Google My Business listing: Google My Business will help improve your website’s visibility for local searches.
- Target low-competition search keywords: Including low-competition keywords in your blogs can help you rank faster and bring you more qualified traffic. For example, “Driving instructor Sydney Northern Beaches.”
Financing Options For Business Growth
As your driving school becomes more popular, you may wish to hire another instructor, which means you’ll likely need another car.
Instead of relying on savings, you can:
- Take out a bank loan: Bank loans are the primary source of funding for businesses in Australia. You can contact institutions like Commonwealth Bank.
- Apply for a private loan: Private loans are an alternative to bank loans which can sometimes be challenging to secure. Private options include friends and family, private loan providers and peer-to-peer loans.
- Contact an investor: You may be able to find an investor that will fund your business for a percentage of the profits. This investor could be a local businessperson, for example.
Exiting Your Driving School
There are several possible reasons for exiting your driving school, including:
- Selling to fund another business venture.
- Taking a break from business.
- Passing the business on to a family member.
But whatever the reason for your exit, it’s crucial to have a plan in place for achieving it.
For example, if you plan to sell your business to fund another venture, it’s vital that you:
- Create systems and processes that the new owner can easily follow.
- Build a brand that customers will recognize.
- Maximize key business metrics that potential buyers want to see (e.g. year-over-year growth).
- Become an expert in business valuation so that you can get a fair price.