In recent years, automotive assembly lines have grown increasingly complex; the process of assembling a vehicle has become so technically intricate that many auto plants now require workers to have advanced technical degrees.
And that’s not the only aspect of the automotive industry that has grown more methodological and compound.
Dealer marketing, too, has hit a new peak—one where it is increasingly challenging for dealers to accommodate the varied consumer needs found in the digital marketplace. Certainly, it’s no longer possible for auto dealers to compete online without strong displays of technical skill—including SEO, website design, content marketing, and more.
The need for a robust online presence is so pronounced that a recent Ward’s Auto article encourages dealerships to view their sites like miniature versions of Amazon.com—and if that sounds like overkill, we’d contend that it’s actually right on point.
Understanding the Online Sales Environment
What’s important to understand about today’s consumers is that they are more likely than ever before to spend many hours researching vehicles online before they ever get up and go to a showroom. And when they do arrive in your showroom, they’ve typically made up their minds about what they intend to purchase.
What this means is that your dealership website has to provide an easy and intuitive way for potential buyers to browse your inventory, educate themselves about your products, and ultimately make a decision they feel comfortable about—just like they might on Amazon.com.
And just as Amazon is laid out to escort shoppers to the checkout page, your dealership website should provide just the right push for consumers to call you and set up and appointment for a test drive.
Beyond the Website
The dealer’s online marketing duties don’t stop at the website, either, though that’s always going to be a dealer’s primary online hub.
Just like Amazon does, dealers must connect with consumers throughout their search journey. Amazon does this through paid ads and retargeting, and dealers might consider those tools, as well. Additionally, and in our view more significantly, dealers should use Craigslist to bring traffic to their showroom. And finally, targeted Facebook ads can be a powerful way to enhance the website’s efficacy.
What’s key is that your dealership be there to engage with consumers at different touch points along their journey—and that you brand yourself consistently each time.
This requires much more than a casual relationship to digital marketing. In fact, it requires a rigorous and holistic strategy that connects the dots between website, off-site marketing, and more.
The automotive marketing experts at Get My Auto can help you achieve this Amazon-like marketing flow—and we can do so while respecting your budget. We encourage independent auto dealers to contact our team today. Reach out to learn how you can become the Amazon of your market.