Starting A Language School? Learn How to do it Successfully!

How to start a language school.
How to start a language school.

Are you thinking of starting a language school and researching how to start it? Please continue reading this page. The content that follows presents how we transformed the business of our customer who decided to do the same. Our customer was a teacher of English and Bulgarian language who was working on a freelance level. This is also how we met as I used to be one of her first students in her freelance work – before that she was teaching in other schools. This is a successful case study of how SEO and digital marketing can lead to success and create a language school brand. The content that follows presents which steps we followed to make this possible. If you are interested in starting your own language school contact us and we can arrange a 30min free call to discuss with you the details of your project. We know how to promote such type of businesses efficient and effectively.

Business Location: Sofia Bulgaria (Local business)

Business Industry:  Language School

Website Language: English

Project Assigned: End of July 2015

Starting a Language School: The Story

Our client had an amateur website that she had built herself but no traffic on it and was doing some facebook ads. One day she asked me to repost one of her posts in facebook and this is how all started. We started discussing about Google Ads and WordPress. The client thought that WordPress is not professional enough cause her website was not looking so nice… And then I saw her how some websites I had made in WordPress were looking and she could not believe it… Sometimes it takes more to make a professional website even it you are using easy to use professional tools… Not to make it long, we decided to proceed with the website project and my client was thinking how it should be etc.. I told her that this is my work. I need to do a research on the topic and then I will come back with a proposal that we will discuss and finalize. And this is what we did. The client’s goal at that stage was to have a nice looking website that would convince the people who visited it to reach her for some lessons. Not, to make a language school, this was too optimistic to think about at her fist freelance months.

The project difficulties

  • Very Small budget.
  • The website language was in English which would be harder to compete against.
  • Completely a start up – so everything was new..

The project strengths

  • Strong will to work passionate to make this project successful both from the client side but also from my side
  • Good communication and understanding
  • Trust in accepting my proposals
  • The market for Bulgarian lessons was growing (many foreigners move in Sofia)
  • The local competition in teaching Bulgarian was not strong

What we did

  • Changed the domain name.
  • Made a completely new website based on the SEO research results.
  • As soon as we launched it, we promoted it with Google Adwords.
  • Made a google my business account.

Services we continue offering to the client:

  • Consultation based on SEO
  • Google Ads Services
  • WordPress website support

The results

Our client was getting to ready to start a new school year and was very busy. As the time was not enough to implement everything we had proposed (as for some of them the client would have to prepare content) we decided to release the website with the basics that would allow us to advertise the language school with our google adwords services. And this is how we did it. Since then the client is always very busy and we have not managed yet to implement the additions even without them the school is going very well. From a freelance business it has been transformed to a Bulgarian languages school that is having 4 full time teachers. And this is a result that has been achieved two years after we started our cooperation. Below you will see how the website our client had made was looking and how the website that we made looks (it will also be updated in the coming months). The old website does not exist any more. But you may visit the one we made by following the next link ‘Learn Bulgarian in Sofia‘.

How to start a language school
Old vs New website design - click on the photo to see a full page comparison

Old vs New Website

Edno Bulgarian Language School in Sofia Bulgaria
Edno Bulgarian Language School in Sofia Bulgaria

New Website – Click on the photo to see it live

Website’s Google Organic Traffic

How to start a language school case study organic traffic
How to start a language school case study organic traffic in 16th months
How to start a language school - organic traffic in one month
How to start a language school - organic traffic in one month

The first graph above illustrates the websites organic traffic in the last 16th months (clicks and impressions). What we see is that in a period of 16th months the school had 2.54k sessions coming from google. This is equivalent to an average of almost 160 sessions per month. In high seasons (like shown in the second graph i.e. jan 2018) this number is much higher (almost 250 sessions/month) as this a seasonal service and also in the first graph the beginning of the graph illustrates the website’s organic traffic only few months after we had launched it. For some people maybe this traffic does not seem big enough but this traffic with some help from Adwords ads has helped the school grow so much so fast. When the traffic that comes to a website is from a relevant target audience then this traffic is enough to make huge results. And ofcourse everything relates also to how much demand there is for what is on offer. This website is targeting foreigners who have moved in Sofia and they would like to learn Bulgarian. Which is not a massive market but an interesting market to make Edno School grow so much.

How to start a language school - google maps traffic
How to start a language school - google maps traffic in 3 summer months.

The graph above illustrates the impressions and clicks the customer received from Google Maps between June to August 2018. When we run Adwords and when the season is on pick the traffic is even bigger. Google products are linked with each other. So, if you would like to get help from Google in promoting your business then the digital marketing plan needs to have many aspects. But, especially in this industry Google can bring you the audience that you need.

Current status

The website at the moment is having organic traffic of about 250 users per month. At least 30% of them are contacting the school and 30% of the ones who contact the school become students. Which means that the school only from the organic traffic has approx. 50 new students every 2 months (it starts new courses every two months). Every half a year so far the school hires a new teacher and when some periods are low in demand we get the help from Google Ads to fulfill the classes. It has been a very successful project that illustrated how a language school can grow with the help of SEO and digital marketing. Ofcourse, for a business to grow it has also to supply the proper services/products to its clients but this is something Edno school is focused on and I am extremely happy for their success.

Client Testimonial – Pushing your business forward!

When I first came across Sofia Tsenekidou’s services, my language school was still at a stage where it was more a passion than a business. I wanted to dream big and I did, but I lacked the courage and knowledge to pursue those dreams. Then Sofia asked me whether I wanted to use something called SEO. It sounded familiar and interesting but there wasn’t much to optimize on my website at the time – it was a horrible piece of work!

Then it all began. The transformation of my business! She did a very thorough research to find out whether what I offered was actually of interest to the world. It certainly was. This helped me believe that what I was investing my time and efforts in, was full of potential.

The next thing Sofia did was to make me put some structure into what I wanted to be a language school one day. Up to that point, I was looking at my business purely from teacher’s perspective. But designing a website not only states your online presence; it gives a name and identity to your ideas, it gives structure to your dreams. If you want to share and develop those, you need to make them clear, appealing, pleasant and discoverable so others can join you.

Once she had combined her research with my services and desires, I started producing the content. I was so optimistic at first but it takes time, inspiration, skills… It is a lot harder than it seems!

So far we have run several Google AdWords campaigns all of which a great success! The website has brought about 75% of our new students and we have received a lot of praise from them – people say it is clear, well structured, and informative. We have also tried other ways of advertising but most of them haven’t brought even a single new student.

The truth is that I haven’t stopped looking at my school as a teacher. On the contrary, I have been able to keep that perspective because Sofia’s work created the virtual space, image and interest in what we do discoverable. She helped us focus on our teaching services without worrying too much about finding new clients. She is the invisible part of our team, helping us keep up with the virtual world!
I would absolutely recommend Sofia Tsenekidou’s services to anyone who is ready to push their business forward!

Ellie Zareva
Manager of Edno School

How to start a language school – Consultation Services for promoting your business online

If you are getting ready to open your own language school and you would like to promote it successfully contact us and we can organize a free 30min call to discuss with you your project.

Starting a Language School – Consultation Services from an Entrepreneur

In TrySEO we care about the success of our projects and the success of our clients. This is why we try to assist them with all our power in meeting their goals and understanding all the aspects of the startup project their are considering to undertake. Would you like to discuss with our language school client and learn from her experience? You will be able to ask her any type of question you have in mind and she will be able to give you valuable consultation based on her entrepreneur journey and the expertise she has developed going through this process. The rate for his consultation sessions is 150euros/hour and she can help you avoid mistakes that can be extremely costly for your business. Contact us to learn more.