Why Should Auto Retailers Use Online Marketing Rather Than Offline Advertising?
‘Over 75% of consumers when searching for the nearest local car retailer start their research online’ – (Jim Rucker- TK productions-chief marketing executive. July 2009)
‘When searching for a car retailer consumers use search engines 3 times more often than TV, radio, and newspapers … combined!’ (-2009)
Major car retailers no longer see a policy of injecting huge amounts capital into traditional means of offline advertising as the best avenue of promotion. Many are are now focused on an interactive internet marketing strategy. This year Fords main marketing aim has been to bolstered their online presence which has seen websites, online ads, and social media meshing with their product line and positioning. Other leading automobile companies are following this trend as CMR interactive noted and has listed Toyota, Honda and Ford amongst the top ten spenders on online marketing.
Car companies can use social media applications and blogs and to move closer to customers gain more interest in their services and brand as well as gaining a better understanding of their customers needs. Car retailers have also seen and noted the importance of an interactive engaging website. In bids to gain and retain customer attention online motoring companies have become more creative, for example Ford have created and posted on their website a video version of the Ford story. As a result of their online marketing focus, Ad Age reports that the number of qualified buyers who planned to buy a Ford jumped 16% from 2008 (econsultancy)
Car retailers who are market leaders in sales generated via the Internet, share an approach that has revealed some common practices that are critical to a successful Internet strategy. Number one amongst these best practices is taking the time to develop and manage both an organic and paid search strategy. A comprehensive plan will be geared towards driving traffic to your website in the most cost effective manner.
It can be extremely difficult to dedicate the required marketing resources with all the demands of running a workshop, parts shop or dealership. Larger dealers and suppliers will generally employ an agency but this comes at significant cost. Using someone in-house is an option but the steep learning curve of the technologies involved can often lead to poorly performing campaigns and lower than expected returns. This is cited as the number one reason why businesses give-up on web marketing.
Thankfully there are technologies readily available that can help smaller car retailers run profitable web marketing campaigns.
Website Grader is one of these technologies now readily available for free. By simply inserting your website URL and some competing websites into the text fields provided on their website the software will generate a report that measures the marketing effectiveness of your website and SEM. It provides a score that incorporates factors such as website traffic, SEO, social popularity. Website Grader will also provide some basic advice on how the website can be improved from a marketing perspective.
Google Analytics is another online marketing technology which is totally free offering businesses the opportunity to gain invaluable rich insight into its website traffic and online marketing effectiveness. Google has made the features of this product flexible and simple to use. This tool clearly presents the effectiveness of your PPC ads, search ranking, website content, click through rates in the form of reports, mapping and charts. Google analytics allows you to understand your website visitors, what and where they’re clicking and therefore identifying any leaks on your website resulting in a lost opportunities.
Contextured offers a full search engine marketing and optimization package for a low monthly fee. Their technology helps ensure your car retailer is ranking highly in organic search results on Google, Yahoo, and Bing for searches on words like “local garages” “Car dealers” “Motors Dealerships”. As experts in keyword optimization process they can help your website up the rankings in search engine results. For a one week free trial use the promotional code “7days” during signup. See more information at:
There are no quick solutions, but by employing the best possible online marketing tools and technologies readily available on the market, motoring companies can drive increased traffic to their site resulting in more sales, quires, and leads, enjoying increasing success amongst the doom and gloom.