If you're a car dealer, you know that there's no better way to attract customers than through the internet. The problem is that there are so many websites out there competing for the attention of potential car buyers, that it can be hard to stand out from the crowd. If you want your dealership to be successful in the long term, then it's essential to focus on SEO practices that will help your dealership get noticed in a short peroid, while also laying the groundwork for lasting success down the road.
In this article, we'll discuss some things you can do right now to help improve your online presence and boost sales immediately. Then we'll talk about long-term strategies that will help keep customers coming back.
Here are some activities that can help your dealership build an online presence and drive more traffic to the store:
Local SEO & optimization of Google business profiles
To improve your search engine optimization, you need to first set up a Google Business Profile. It will allow you to add more information about your business, including the address, phone number and photos.
Once a profile is set up, you can begin optimizing it by adding keywords and tags that describe your business. It will help people find your business when they search for those keywords or tags.
You should also make sure that your website is optimized for local SEO. This means using the correct location when publishing content on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter. It also means using local keywords in titles and descriptions of products or services offered on your website (e.g., "Car Dealer in City, CA”). This helps customers find businesses close to their location more quickly than searching by just the keyword alone.
Master transactional and commercial keywords
The best way to maximize your on-site SEO is to use keywords that will get your business noticed by consumers. It's essential to understand the difference between these two types of keywords:
Transactional keywords are words customers use when they're ready to buy something from you. For example, if someone types "Ford dealership Atlanta" into Google, they're likely looking for a Ford dealership in their area. You can use these keywords to optimize your website for people who are ready to make a purchase.
Commercial keywords are words people use when looking for information about a product or service similar to yours. If someone types "Ford F-150" into Google, they're probably not ready to buy a new car—they want more information about Fords in general so that they can decide whether or not one is right for them. You can use these keywords to optimize your website for people who are just getting started with their vehicle research.
Clean up and improve the website's navigation
Your website's navigation is a crucial element of the user experience. Visitors need to be able to find what they need on your website and get around quickly. If you do it right, it can also help boost your search engine rankings by directing users toward high-quality content relevant to their searches—making it easier for Google to understand what your site is about and show it in its top search results.
So doing it step-by-step is important. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure the navigation on your dealership’s website is optimized for search.
- Delete low-traffic pages from the navigation bar
- Keep your website's top-level navigation simple
- Optimize your website for mobile users
- Remove paired pages
- Ensure that your website sub-navigation is concise
Link relevant pages together
The more links you have on your website, the more likely search engines will crawl through them all and index each page individually. To do this, link related pages together using anchor text with keywords.
For example, if you sell both new and used cars, it would be beneficial to connect those two pages with anchor text like "new cars" or "used cars." This way, when someone searches for either keyword phrase on Google or Bing, they'll see both pages listed in the top results.
Ensure you fix technical SEO errors
You’ll need to fix any broken links or incorrect codes on the website because they can cause issues including:
This can be caused by various things, including old links in blog posts or 404 errors (links that lead to pages that no longer exist).
If you have multiple pages on your site with the same content, you will need to fix this ASAP! Google will penalize websites for this.
Add page headings
H1, H2, H3, etc. Search engine bots use page headings to determine what part of a page they should read first. It is why it's important to add page headings using H1 tags on each page of your website, as well as subheadings using H2 and H3 tags when appropriate.
Doing website scrutiny can help you spot technical errors in your site, but the results of such audits should be viewed with caution. Although free tools are available, T3 Marketing's comprehensive audit will help you address those issues and improve your website's performance. Contact us today for more information.
Craft a measurement approach that is meaningful to your dealership's business metrics
There are many ways to measure your results:
Number of pages created
It's essential to track the number of pages your team has created so you have an accurate picture of what's being done, as well as its impact on search performance. You should also track how many pages have been updated since their last crawl by Googlebot or BingBot. It allows you to identify those pages that need additional attention or are not being indexed at all.
Number of technical problems identified and resolved
It is a great way to gauge if your site structure is optimized for search engines, but it doesn't show whether that optimization is working or not. Does it increase organic rankings? Does it lead to more conversions? Is the website loading faster as a result? These metrics would be better indicators than just knowing that technical issues were found and fixed on your website.
Organic keyword ranking improvement
Optimizing your website content is one of the best ways to improve organic keyword rankings. The first step is choosing keywords with high search volume, but low competition. You can use keyword tools to find these terms so that when someone searches for them on Google, they arrive at your website first.
Once you've chosen your keywords, make sure that each page contains them in a natural way that makes sense for users looking for information about those topics. A good rule of thumb is to use no more than three times as many words as there are actual keywords in the title.
Organic traffic results in a variety of outcomes
A good way to determine whether you are driving quality traffic for transactional or commercial keywords is by measuring the outcomes of your organic search results. So, to do this, some keywords will aim to drive high-to-mid funnel traffic to your website, while others may be aimed at driving low funnel traffic. Some outcomes that you can track include:
Website calls, form fills and chats from organic search, as well as Google Business Profile driving directions requests and website clicks - these can all be valuable marketing metrics.
Be cautious of Scare Tactics
If you don't have an SEO plan, you're at a huge disadvantage with marketing your dealership online. But don't be fooled by companies who claim to have a "magical" SEO solution that will get you thousands of website visitors per month. These companies are just trying to get your money and leave you with nothing but frustration and disappointment.
Don't waste your time or money on these companies—instead, invest in a proven plan to help you build a solid foundation for online success.
If you're in the market for a new website or need to make an existing website more effective, there's no better time than now to take advantage of T3 Marketing’s website audit. Our detailed report will help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your current website and make recommendations for how to improve it.
T3 Marketing offers a real-world approach that focuses on building trust with your customers through relevant and valuable content, making them more likely to buy from you in the future. Get in touch with us, T3 Marketing, to discuss your website audit.