With in-person sales limited across the board, the automotive industry has taken one of the hardest hits throughout our current economic challenge. As car dealerships cannot simply sit on the sidelines during this global crisis, they are shifting a focus to online sales for both new and used cars. A major 180° turnaround as only about 14% of car sales in 2019 were made online. This turn to online auto sales is likely setting the stage for a longer future in digital car buying after the crisis clears, and is a key time for dealerships to review their digital presence.
Looking at this market disruption as a pivot point, is your auto company’s digital mark as strong as it could be? Here are a few questions to ask to ensure your online reputation is showcasing your dealership as the top choice:
Revisit Marketing Plan
With the world adjusting to our “new normal,” it is a key time to review your marketing plan that you likely set in place before the days of COVID-19. Is your plan guiding your customer on their new stay-at-home customer journey, from initial interest to online purchase? Are you standing out to your potential customer on their searches, visits, video views, and clicks across the web – from Google to YouTube, manufacturer and dealer websites to review websites?
There’s no doubt about it – sales are driven by a great customer experience. With the shift to online, you lose the opportunity for face-to-face service. Are you utilizing all media resources to engage your potential customer? Consider showcasing branded videos of your latest vehicles, use content marketing to be a trusted resource for your customers, and monitor your social media channels to answer questions in a timely manner. A dealership will be remembered by the level of online support they can provide, further strengthening their reputation. And a strong marketing plan can remind those customers that you’re the top dealership in town.
With online traffic soaring, it is a prime time for leaders in the auto industry to revisit how their digital reputation is holding up. Between online reviews and word of mouth, digital referrals are being consulted more than ever. In fact, the vast majority (more than 80%) of Americans seek recommendations when making a purchase of any kind. A customer sharing their experience with others is worth ten times that which you write or say about yourself. And when someone shares or talks about a brand on social media, there’s a significant correlation to purchasing behavior.
When you’re looking for an answer, you often look to your old friend, Google. Did you know that 75% of users never click past the first page of search results? If your dealership is not ranking highly, here is your opportunity to optimize your website through SEO. When you achieve high rankings, you attract more traffic — and ideally, convert that traffic into customers and leads.
Now is the time to stay ahead of the competition. Morgan & Co. has over 23 years of experience working with auto dealerships doing just that – using a customized strategy to capture the eye of potential buyers, leading to a strong ROI. Contact us today to learn how we can help your dealership stand out in today’s digital world.