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Why SEO for your Car Dealership is Essential

DATE PUBLISHED: January 15, 2013

While there is no denying the importance of a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy for any company on the web, many auto dealerships have been reluctant to invest heavily in SEO strategies. 

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Where does this reluctance leave you? It’s possible you are letting potential customers go to competitors who do have optimized websites.   

Incorporating a strong SEO strategy into your marketing is critical to competing in the marketplace for auto dealerships

Consider these reasons for allocating more funds towards your SEO strategy and techniques when analyzing your marketing budget:
  • Consumers are on the Internet – According to Onlinemr.com, over 89% of web-users looking to buy a car searched online before visiting a dealership. Your established customers are likely to turn to the Internet to learn more about current deals.  Furthermore, you will build consumer trust by displaying positive reviews of your dealership be it on your website or your social media sites.

  • Dealerships are competing nationally now – Many dealerships that were established before the Internet became a popular consumer tool may still be holding onto the notion that they are only competing against local dealerships.  However, now, an automobile purchase is such a substantial and infrequent investment that many consumers are willing to traverse their region to get the best deal possible.  The tool most will use to determine where to shop is the Internet, and having a website that ranks high enough, a.k.a. page 1 of Google, is going to greatly increase traffic to your website and in turn, your dealership.  

  • SEO is huge for capitalizing on the local market as well - While car dealerships can leverage the Internet and their SEO strategy to gain potential new customers from outside of their immediate region, SEO also comes largely into play in local searches.  Optimizing your SEO strategy to include your location can help when someone in the immediate area does a search for a car dealership. Ranking on page 1 for car dealerships in your area is essential.

  • Content for the consumer is king– Your only audience isn’t Google. Google is constantly changing, and while using keywords and good meta tag descriptions are relevant factors when producing content and editing website pages, good content has become more and more important. Which means content that is relevant and helpful to the consumer. The best sites for consumers will rank higher.  The content you post; including cost comparisons, model comparisons, how-to guides, tip sheets, and testimonials are not only effective marketing techniques that draw in the consumer, but they also make search engines view your site more favorably.

  • Outrank your competitors – The automotive marketplace is shrinking, which means that unless you are growing, you are dying.  Not all of your competitors are using SEO techniques, but the ones that are have a huge advantage.  You may feel that more traditional marketing channels are more profitable, but the truth is that TV, radio and newspaper are slowly but surely losing ground. The most competitive dealerships have continued to use traditional marketing channels IN ADDITION TO adopting a comprehensive SEO strategy.

SEO’s role in getting customers into your showrooms shouldn’t be understated.  With dealerships enlarging their footprints to attract customers from around the country, competition is fiercer than ever.  In order to achieve success at this level, your dealership needs to be employing SEO techniques integrated with traditional marketing practice in order to best shine the largest spotlight on your business.  

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