You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Custom Dealer Web Sites’ category.

Since my last blog about the Summer Sales Event, I’ve had a lot of activity with updating slideshows and interior pages on my dealer’s websites.  Was it because of my insightful blog?  I like to think so, but that’s difficult to measure.

Now that you know what kind of changes you want to make to your webpage, take a little extra time to make sure they will be effective.  I don’t expect everyone to be marketing experts so I’ll help you out.  Here are some hints when creating slides:

  1. When creating a slide realize you only have about 6-8 seconds for the viewer to see the overall slide, read it, comprehend it and decide if they want to click on it.  This is the same way you view a billboard on the side of the road – it’s a temporary image with one direct message.
  2. Don’t be too descriptive – that’s what the Image Link page is for (you want to link the slide to an interior page with a full description). 
  3. Think about where your eyes are drawn to on the slide.  You want the main focus to be what you are selling.  Bright image graphics or off set wording can be distracting and take away from the main point of your slide.

If you are creating the slide yourself or if you have your website provider create it for you make sure your point gets across.  It’s always a good idea to get a non-bias 3rd party to take a look and get their feedback on what they are drawn too and what message they perceive from the slide.  If you have more questions on how we can help your website get the right attention, give us a call. 

Liquid Motors, Inc – 800-581-2884

It’s that time of year – new models are being introduced!  Excitement is stirring in the air and dealers can hardly maintain the hype.  That means the Summer Sales Events are about to be in full force.  I hope your employees are ready for some of the busiest months of the year.

Here are some helpful hints to prepare:

  • Start by making sure everything on your website is looking how you want.  If you need to add service specials or update your staff page, this may be the time of the year that your webpage gets the most hits. 
  • Update your main page with a new slide introducing your Summer Sales Event.
  • Inform all employees within the dealership of the Sales Event.  Your service operator, cashier or porter should know enough information to at least direct someone inquiring. 
  • Local advertising is obviously important – newspapers, tv/radio ads, billboards.

Your website host is happy to make any changes needed, but please don’t want until the last minute.  I would recommend checking over your website as soon as possible to give ample time for the changes to be made and double checked. 

Let’s make this the best Sales Event your dealership has ever had!!  For more information on how Liquid Motors could benefit your dealership’s success, please contact us!

Does anyone remember when car dealers thought the Internet was not going to impact their business and that they did not need it? Heck I sure do because I was behind a desk at a store and remember it like it was yesterday.  Well now we are faced although in a smaller scale a similar question, “Do I really need a mobile website”?

My goal of this blog is to give you some statistics and patterns that will certainly open your eyes as to what is happing in the automotive segment and what is with out question going to happen.

According to Morgan Stanley’s report for 2011 over half of all Americans now own a smart phone! I have to admit when I read this I was blown away, my first thought was I guess the economy is not as bad as I thought. Then as I continued my research I see where Google stated they activate over 900K Android devices everyday with the trend heading towards tablets.

Now that we know that customers are buying mobile devices and the forecast through 2015 is only stronger in the mobile device arena lets see how current mobile user behavior impacts the automotive industry.

Google is now releasing a lot of automotive specific information as they enter the automotive space with their Dealer Jumpstart Google Automotive Team.  There were a few specific details that really stood out to me.  In your mind right now take an internal guess of what percentage of automobile related queries happen daily via a mobile device?

If you guessed 20% you are correct the slide below gives you a visual feel for how mobile device searches is in hyper drive. Google is also reporting that by 2015 half of ALL queries will come from a Smartphone.

Now you’re a believer that mobile is here to stay and increasing daily. Let us take a look at some of these mobile users behavior.  The behavior of a customer is invaluable in your marketing efforts and by knowing this you can put your dealership in front of these in market customers.

What time of the day are they searching? Every vendor I know of including us here at Liquid Motors will tell you if you’re in the Internet business you need to be available when the customers are shopping.  Would you be surprised to learn that 35% of the time consumers are searching for answers to their automotive questions they are doing it when the dealership is closed 7PM-7AM according to Google? This not only shows how critical it is to have the information customers are looking for at their finger tips but to be available for them. Now that is customers service and great customer service WINS!

How Google says customers are engaging dealerships on the move and look at the percentage of customers actually doing price comparison while they are on your lot!

The fact that customers are doing price comparisons on your lot should not be a surprise heck remember the “old 3rd base coach” they would be on the phone with at home looking on line at pricing? Now they just have the ability to do it in their palm, plus with so many new apps like Redline that consumers are using they are getting trained to do this.

Here is your mobile ready checklist

Create a mobile optimized website. Your main dealer site may be visible on your mobile phone but there are so many functions that are lost and the user experience is lacking to say the least. With Google’s statistics that 57% of mobile users say they would not recommend a business with a poor mobile site and 40% of mobile users have turned to a competitor after a bad mobile experience using your main dealer site as your mobile site is just not acceptable in today’s market.

Make it easy for customers to get to your mobile site – use a company that utilizes device detection so mobile users are automatically viewing your mobile site not redirected or required to use a different mobile URL. Here is an example of a Liquid Motors Full and Mobile site comparison.  The site is http://www.mercedesbenzofgeorgetown.com/  if you wish to review the site yourself.Track clicks for “get directions” and “click to call”. Take advantage of your analytics they will allow you to make adjustments to your websites SEO.

Utilize tools such as QR Codes so consumers looking for answers or vehicle details can find these easily. These Quick Response codes should take consumers directly to the vehicle details page on your mobile website.  You can also use them on your mobile sites to allow customers to see more information or fill out contact forms easily.

Track and monitor results with your analytics.

Make measureable adjustments as needed. Remember if you make a change you want to know where you are at the time of the change so you can measure a positive or negative affect of that change.

Are customers doing reviews about car dealerships and what do you consider a review? If you ask most people what they think of when you ask, “What is a review” most would tell you a form the customer fills out. Well according to Google 80% of car purchasers will tell someone about their experience and in today’s world, 50% are doing so digitally.  Roughly 10% of these buyers will do so in a written or digital form submission. Word of mouth still rules the roast it seems.

What is next for Google, we know Live Chat for Adwords powered by ActiveEngage is in beta but who really knows I am sure there will be a lot over the next several months as they enter the automotive space full speed. I do know one item I have seen and since Google offered 6 Billion dollars to purchase Groupon® which was rejected a new product has been coming down the pipe line called Google Offers.  If you are familiar with Groupon® then you have an idea of what they are doing.  Not only can customers sign up to get local offers they are interested in like Groupon® but on Google searches customers can click on the “offer” icon and the current offer your dealership has running will display. No release date on this that I have found or heard to date.

Thank you for following my blog and all of us hear at Liquid Motors appreciate your input, feedback and support, without our dealers we are nothing!

Google Analytics can be a scary thing, but it will help you with your Internet marketing the more you understand it. I would urge you to log into your account and look around. Google Analytics Standard Reporting can be narrowed down by the hour, day, week, and month.

Google Analytics Standard Reporting shows you. Visits, Unique visitors, page views, pages/visit, avg. visit duration, bounce rate, and % new visits. This report will tell you how many visitors have been to your site and how long they stayed.

The Site Content report shows you the site content. This report shows how many times someone has looked at your site pages. This would be helpful in letting you know if your site pages are sending the right messages.

The Site Speed Report shows you avg. page load time, avg. redirection time, avg. domain lookup time, avg. server connection time, avg. server response time, and avg. page download time. This report is telling you how fast your site is.

The In Page Analytics shows you where consumers are clicking on your site. This report is will show you in detail where people click exactly on your pages and give you percentages which is helpful when creating new pages to draw more attention to your site.

This is a basic over view of Google Analytics. You owe it to yourself and company to log in and become familiar with this powerful tool.

 

The answer is – it should!  But honestly, when was the last time you checked to see what your website was saying to your viewers?  We constantly add and add and change and add things to our websites and before long we know exactly what’s on it, but we have no idea how it looks to others.  I find it incredibly difficult to step back from my own “masterpiece” sometimes because I feel like it’s such a part of me that I would hate for anything to happen to any piece of it.

As I go through my dealers’ websites a majority of them look amazing (probably because we host them) but then there are the ones that I click to go on their main page and I’m already stressed out.  Be concise and direct with what you are want your viewers to see.  I want to know exactly where to go for anything I am looking for within the first 3-4 seconds.  If I have to search, then I get frustrated and will go back to my Google search and see what comes up next.  That’s website suicide!

Don’t be overly artistic with your website.  Fluff is not always a good thing.  Viewers want structure and conformity – they are expecting to find information the same way they find it on other websites.  You have no idea how many times I have been on a website and could not find the phone number or the hours of operation.  It makes me feel like I’m the dumb one.  There is nothing more frustrating than not knowing how to navigate a page.

Now for the contrasting question – Is it saying enough?  This is where it is important to make sure you are practicing good search engine optimization.  Keywords through out your website will help search engines know what you are advertising and hopefully get you as high on the list as possible.  Consider listing each vehicle as new/pre-owned, make/model/style, the surrounding cities, having a dynamic URL and the list goes on and on.

All of our websites are not only designed with the search engines in mind but more importantly are designed for the best user experience possible. Our goal is to incorporate logical website navigation centered on getting shoppers directly to the information they are looking for in as few clicks as possible. We want to ensure that every page on our sites is quick to load which will help reduce the amount of “bounces” our dealer’s sites receive.

Please call us if you would like more information on how we can help you and your dealership maximize your online potential!  We would love to help you! www.liquidmotors.com

 

Technology is ever changing and staying up with the times is more important than ever.  Dealers are starting to use what may have been thought of as unimaginable technology 10 years ago that is becoming part of our culture.  We are demanding faster service, more accurate information and something to grab our interest at all times.  How will we ever keep up?

 

It’s amazing to go into dealerships now and see what technology is being used.  You may be one of 300 customers that visit a dealer in that particular day, but your service advisor who greets you knows your name and probably already knows what you are there for.  The service advisor may not even have a pen and paper anymore, but rather an iPad or tablet of some sort.  Your tire measurements have already been checked for pressure, tread depth and premature edge wear with a Vin Tech system you rolled over on your way into the service drive.  Or if you are returning your borrowed loan car there is already someone in your vehicle bringing it to the drive with no call ahead notice due to an RFID tag.  It’s just amazing the steps dealers are taking not to get one step ahead, but stay up with the times.

 

As expensive as all of these products are there is such a benefit to using them.  You are saving cost on supplies, being eco-friendly and most importantly improving your business through pure efficiency!  Why wouldn’t you want to be staying in the game?

 

If you’re a dealer that is looking to move forward, do some research or visit conventions that will demonstrate products to increase your business.  Not every product or vendor will be your perfect match but it’s good to know what’s out there and test some products.  I would hate for you to be left behind.

To say that Smart phones have changed the way consumers shop is completely FALSE.

 

Smart phones have completely revolutionized the way consumers shop. They are everywhere buyers go. Whether at home, in their car, plane, store, coffee shop, beach, mountain top…you name it people simply do not leave home without these “mobile computing devises”.

 

According to Google 66% of all smart phone users access the Internet on their smart phone at least once a day and 57% perform some sort of search.

 

So with that said it is even more important than ever that your dealership is optimized for this ever growing community of “mobile shoppers”. Just like it is important that the desktop version of your dealer’s website is easy to navigate and quick to load, the mobile version of your website is no different.

 

In fact according to a Compuware study on “What Users Want fromMobile” in 2011, 71% of users expected a mobile site to load as fast as a desktop site. In this same study 57% of the respondents said that they would NOT recommend a business with a bad mobile site!!

 

23% of these adults have cursed their phone when a site doesn’t work.

 

My recommendation is that you visit the following website and take the test for yourself. It is completely FREE and I feel it will be a true eye opener for many:

 

http://www.howtogomo.com/en/d/test-your-site/#gomo-meter

 

For questions about how Liquid Motors can help your potential and current customers “not curse at your website” give us a call. We would be more than happy to help.

The other day I was working with a dealership that was in an SEO contract with a local marketing company. The company had an arrangement with this

particular dealership that for a certain price per month they would guarantee at least 12 top page results for their website. The second I heard this

the flags started flying up. After reviewing his latest invoice with the 12 keywords they achieved top rankings for it was instantly obvious what was going on.

The keywords and phrases had hardly any competition and ZERO monthly local or global searches for any of the terms and phrases on the list.

While guarantee sound nice in theory as they relate to SEO there is almost always a catch. If you ever have any questions about anything that relates to your current

website provider or search engine optimization give us a call.

I know we have talked about it before…especially when Google made the change to how they display, or lack there of, 3rd party reviews. I had a customer call me the other day wanting some suggestions on how to best display review sites and testimonials on his website. He is changing his delivery process and is now going to have the sales associate pull up the page with the customer at the point of delivery and ask them to write a review right then and there. I think it sounds like a great idea cause we all know that at the point of delivery the customer is going to be as happy as they will ever be, sorry but that is “typically” the truth, and what better time to ask them to write about their experience. I did warn my dealer that he might get push back and some people might not want to fill out a survey at that time and might feel pressured into it so it and that the delivery of how they ask the customer will be just as important then the delivery of the car. Some people might want to write a testimonial in the comforts of their own home without the sales associate hovering above them so if they don’t want to write one let them know that you will email them the information on how to write one should they decide to do so at a later date. Have you changed your process at the dealership on how you collect testimonials and reviews? If so we want to hear from you!

Every Saturday morning my wife and I like to go out for a cup of coffee. We drive by 2-3 perfectly good Starbucks stores to the other end of town where our favorite mom and pop coffee shop resides. There is nothing fancy about this particular coffee shop, just a small house converted into a store with a few tables a couch and a bar loaded with old coffee and espresso machines. The coffee is about as good as what you would find at any other coffee shop but there is something a little different about this particular one. Every Saturday when we walk in their store we are greeted by name. The owner of the store comes around the counter shakes my hand, gives my wife a hug, smiles at our son and begins asking us about our week. As we follow him up to the counter to order some coffee and breakfast he grabs me the morning paper and ask one of the employees to clear off a table for us. All this service for about a $4.50 purchase, every Saturday morning. Yet, we keep coming back every Saturday and have been doing so for more than 3 years.

I think that this story is important because in today’s world we are all surrounded by hundreds if not thousands of different options. Buyers are better informed than ever before thanks to the sea of information the Internet provides. All things equal a cup of coffee is a cup of coffee…It is the experience that a customer has that makes them continue to do business with a particular company (or coffee shop, dealership, vendor, etc.). In sum, companies that go out of their way to create quality products and services and ensure the greatest possible experience for their customers will continue to thrive in any market.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,305 other followers

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,305 other followers