When it comes to managing your marketing efforts, what gets measured gets done and what gets done gets measured. The same holds true for digital marketing for car dealerships, as there are a few things you need to track to make sure you’re spending your money the right way. There are key performance indicators (KPIs) that set benchmarks for your site to see where you stand in relation to the rest of the industry. These KPIs include page visits, time spent on site, page bounces, and clicks. These are all all standard metrics your dealership needs to stay on top of, but these are also metrics every other dealership will be tracking as well.
Your digital team must analyze the KPIs to get a basic understanding of how your customer are interacting (or not interacting) with your site. From these metrics, you can tailor your efforts and content to their behavior.
Search Times and Keyword Competition
Pay attention to what times of day your site and your content is getting the most attention. Whether it’s midday like the foot traffic trend or in the evening when they get off work, meeting them where they’re doing their research when they’re doing it will help them decide to visit your dealership instead of your competition. Adjust your budget to deliver the best ads at the best times. Pay attention to the keyword competition during these times as well. Ranking high for keywords associated with your competition, as well as your company will give your company an edge. Upload and promote new content to your social accounts during the times that get the most engagement to stay top of mind throughout theirbuying journey.
This is probably the biggest thing to pay attention to. This goes back to the notion that you need to meet your audience where they’re spending their time. If you do all the above, but don’t optimize your content for mobile devices then you’re way behind your competition. Most people aren’t always at a computer screen but look things up when it’s convenient for them on their mobile device. Pay attention to this during the times you get the highest volume of foot traffic in your showroom, and you can get an idea of what people are looking up while they’re browsing your inventory in person.
Paying attention to your mobile traffic will provide insight as to what people are thinking throughout their buying journey. You can then use this information to better service future leads by giving them what they want. Typically, people look things up on their mobile devices when an idea or question pops into their head. If they have a question, they’ll ask their mobile device and get an answer. Be there to provide them with that answer.
Foot Traffic Volume
In a recent report done by Google, they measured the amount of foot traffic on lots in regards to the time of day. On average, the highest amount of foot traffic comes between 10AM and 3PM. Whether people are coming to check out their next potential ride on their lunch break or just planned their visit midday, this is extremely valuable for dealerships across the country. With the average car buyer only visiting 2 dealerships, capturing their attention during this time of day will increase the chance they choose to visit your dealership instead of your competitors.
Regardless of whether or not your foot traffic matches up with the average, it’s important to get an idea of when your target customers are going to shop for cars. Google also revealed the volume of foot traffic on the lot by month as well, showing that the key times of year people buy cars are during the summer and towards the end of the year. This way, you can adjust your budgets accordingly to get the best results and bring in attentive customers into your showroom.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but if you’re not following up on your pre-approval submissions than you’re missing out on someone who has already decided they want to buy. They’re far enough in their buying journey to enter credit information and they’re close to being ready to buy. Even if they don’t get approval, reach out and discuss any other options you might be able to provide for them. People don’t like to wait for things they submit online, especially on mobile devices. Reaching out quickly will reinforce the fact that your dealership is focused on providing them with the most valuable experience possible.
Top Performing Content Format
Format matters, and the same message can be delivered to different people in a variety of ways. For instance, Google notes that YouTube has the greatest impact at the start of the buying journey. This is where people shop for reviews, specs, and the best vehicle in the category they’re looking at. Once they narrow it down, they typically move on to images to explore features and options that will fit their lifestyle. Although you can explain this in a YouTube video, sometimes the vagueness of a picture will make it easier for the shopper to apply it to their specific needs.
It's different for everyone, but having multiple formats of content will allow you to reach a wider range of customers. It will also keep your leads engaged as they won’t just be reading blog after blog or watching video after video. Videos, pictures, virtual tours, blogs, infographics, and anything else you can think of will add value to their decision making process and your dealership stay top of mind.