You must have noticed that the people coming in to test drive the cars, trucks, and SUVs on your lot are very knowledgeable. They compare trim levels; they know warranty limitations; they even negotiate price based on residual values. All of this stems from a consumer trend that can't be ignored anymore: consumers are researching products before visiting a physical store. What can a dealership do to improve its digital and foot traffic? The answer to that rests on demographically targeting the area surrounding the dealership.
First, let's take a moment to understand how search engines like Google work. When someone types a phrase into a query box, the search engine provides an answer according to a variety of factors: location, search history, age, etc. The search engine also interprets the intention of the phrase. For example, when someone types “How do leases work?” the search engine assumes that the person is interested in leasing a vehicle. What this also does is slightly change the results of future searches. If the next search is for a particular make and model, the results might have an advertisement for a leased vehicle.
In other words, researching cars is not like going to the library and using the card catalogue, where consumers can choose what they see. Instead, the search engine caters results to what it thinks the shopper is looking for.
That means that advertising methods need to be flexible enough to accommodate these constant changes. That is why the most successful campaigns, especially pay-per-click (PPC)/cost-per-click (CPC) campaigns, are most effective when they specifically target both behavior and geography.
People are more likely to conduct in-depth searches during their lunch break, in the evening, and on the weekends. Different groups of individuals search for cars differently: only people over 60 use the word “automobile,” while Millennials often use the blanket term “car” for anything on four wheels.
The bottom line is this: dealerships have to use digital marketing strategies to promote their inventory. What makes a campaign successful is pinpointing who lives near the dealership. When that information is combined with a location, these campaigns generate quality traffic that converts into leads because these are buyers who are specifically interested in the dealer's inventory. People who visit a site full of cars when they are looking for a truck is useless. But, if someone is looking for a particular make, in a certain city, and the search result features exactly that, well, the sales team just got themselves a lead.
Now think about your vendors and how they are marketing your inventory. Are they geographically targeting the vicinity surrounding your dealership? Do they know the particulars of the demographic? Most importantly: are they able to track who is visiting your website, what pages they are looking at, and whether they fill out a lead form? If you can't answer those questions, it's time to question the effectiveness of your vendors. Better yet, give us a call at DealerLeads and let us show you how we geographically and behaviorally target potential buyers to bring dealerships high-quality traffic, first-generation leads, and an unprecedented ROI.