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Is It Time To Kill The “Internet Special Price” From Your Dealership Website?

There is no denying the fact that the internet and internet marketing have changed the way people shop for and buy cars. The way we use the internet and what we need from it has continuously evolved, and companies like Google have continually updated their search results and algorithms to match better the way we search.

Starting about six or seven years ago, when Google began using machine learning and artificial intelligence to alter their search results, Google was able to quickly adapt to how we search for things and even how we set up our websites. The keywords and tricks you had to use to find what you needed in the past have been replaced as the internet has evolved. Just look at voice search. Google will display or even speak results back to you without even having to look at a website.

So how does this impact your dealership? Well, has your website evolved in a similar fashion? Have you adapted to modern search intent, or are you still relying on old gimmicks to get people to your lot? And are they backfiring for you in a new decade?

One tactic that could arguably be a remnant of a bygone internet era is the “internet special pricing.” It may be a simple phrase, but it implies that purchasing a vehicle through the internet affords the dealership enough leeway on the price that they can further reduce the price. But how many transactions are ever completed 100% on the web at your dealership? Probably very few, if any.

Does your web pricing match the pricing of the vehicles on the lot? If one were to visit your lot, would the price be higher on the vehicle than on the internet? Probably not.

When a person goes to buy a used car, they are entering the sales process as a skeptic with their guard up. They don’t want to buy a lemon, and they certainly don’t want to overpay for it. By having two prices for the same vehicle advertised already builds doubt about what the real price is.

This example is where Carmax was able to gain so much ground so quickly. Their sales process eliminated all the doubt, all the haggling, and to the best of their ability, all the fear of purchasing a used car. They even offer free returns. That’s why, on any given Saturday, there is a wait to talk to a salesperson at Carmax while the dealer down the street is just passing the time before the next prospect shows up.

“Special Internet pricing” or “Get your E Price” or “One shot Internet pricing” all served the same purpose in the past. It was first designed to draw people in, get their information, and build a database of possible clients. What are you trying to accomplish with Internet Special Pricing? Are you trying to generate more leads, or do you believe having “special internet pricing” will help close the sales leads you do have?

Even if you do have “special internet pricing,” your customers are still going to use that number as the starting point of negotiation. It doesn’t matter what brand you sell; people are going to want to negotiate unless your dealership’s policy is a “one price, no-hassle” operation.

So in 2020, is the “internet special price” doing anything for your business, or is it time to evolve? Where else can you make changes to be more open and transparent about the vehicles that you sell? Where will evolution take your dealership in 2020 and beyond?

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5 Ways To Give Your Dealership Website A Virtual Facelift

Your website is your first impression for folks looking at dealerships online. Not only is it a representation of your brand, but it’s also a way to attract new customers. In only a matter of moments, a visitor to your website can determine if they want to do business with you. They may not have driven by your dealership or seen your commercials. Therefore, your site is as much of a representation of your dealership as the location itself. 

Poor website design
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One of the most important attributes of a website is the ability to communicate what the business does and who it serves. Your website needs to be able to answer questions a customer might have and give an accurate representation of your brand. At the same time, you can’t fill your website with so much content that your message is lost. 

The following are 5 ways you can improve your dealership’s website:

White Space

Although you want your website to pop and grab people’s attention, it’s also important to have white space. This gives the impression of organization and cleanliness in a modern way, focusing the attention on essential aspects within that white space. It can be specific models, categories, new or pre-owned, etc. The possibilities are endless. A recent study by Crazy Egg found that user attention increased by 20% when using white space around images, titles, and text. 

Create Calls To Action 

People are going to venture onto your website at all times: early in the morning, during the business day, and even in the middle of the night. Calls To Actions (CTAs) are an excellent way for someone to begin communication with you based on what they want. Be careful not to bog down the page with too many CTAs. This can cause your message to be lost in the chaos. Less is more when using Call To Action buttons. Sometimes all you need are “View Details” and “Get ePrice” to adequately serve the needs of someone visiting your website. 

Mobile Formatted Website

Not everyone who comes to your website will be on their computer or laptop. This is why your website must also be mobile formatted. Keep it easy to navigate and identical to the desktop version of your website. Many website building software products have built-in responsive design tools that allow your pages to detect the size of the screen being used, and reformat the page for optimal display. Mobile-Friendly websites rank higher in search results done on the phone compared to non-mobile formatted sites. If you want to read more on the statistics of mobile-friendly websites, click here

Put A Face Behind The Business 

When all the focus is on how to drive traffic to your website and improve the overall appearance, many businesses focus on the products and services offered. This can cause them to neglect the actual person-to-person experience. When people go to the dealership, they’re working with a real person. Since a visitor on your website doesn’t have someone greeting them it’s critical to have a page showing pictures of your staff on your website to give the visitor a welcoming vibe. Don’t limit the collection to just the sales team and service advisors either. Include service and reconditioning staff, finance, back-office, and executives, too.

People want to feel like they’re working with someone who genuinely cares about their business and not just after their money. Having a page with staff profiles “humanizes” your website and allows your staff to introduce themselves before someone comes into the dealership. 

High-Quality Photos 

The photos you use online for the vehicles on sale at your dealership are essential to determine whether or not someone is interested. It’s the product’s first impression, so you want to make sure the cars look their best. Using high-quality images shows your dealership cares about the brand and giving the user the best possible experience online. A study by Cox Automotive found that 90% of customers find photos important when looking for new or used cars online. 

Children viewing monitor

There are plenty of other ways you can improve the online experience for your dealership’s website. These are 5 of the primary techniques that the most successful dealerships use for their sites. Give it a try with yours, and the results may surprise you.

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Hubspot Free VS Google Analytics:

What is the Best Free Resource for Your Mobile Repair Business Website?

So you built a great website, and you feel like it is doing its job. You are satisfied with how well it ranks on the search results pages and you are getting some decent leads. That is fantastic, and you are doing better than a lot of businesses with a less effective web presence. But how do you know if your site is really a peak performer?

The simple answer is to measure it because that which can be measured can be improved. You don’t need to be a web developer in order to manage or monitor the traffic on your website thanks to some very robust and free resources available to all website owners and managers. Today we are going to discuss two of them: Google Analytics and Hubspot Free.

Google Analytics

If you have ever dabbled with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or sought ways to boost your web traffic, you have probably tried or at least heard of Google Analytics. Whether you sign up for an account or not, Google is tracking all kinds of metrics on your website and they provide this data to you for free in a dashboard called Google Analytics.

Google Analytics Menu Bar

But despite all the collective genius at work at Google, some people find many of their tools very hard to work with, clumsy, and not very intuitive.  There is certainly some valuable information in Google Analytics, but the information can be very difficult to interpret or even put into action. Google Analytics allows you to track visits to your site, how long they stay on your pages, bounce rates, what percentage of your traffic comes from various devices, what times of day are the most popular, and a whole lot more.

If you are very analytical, you might really enjoy clicking through your Google Analytics statistics and clicking all the tabs on the left bar to learn all about the most granular metrics that Google is tracking on your site.

Google Analytics Dashboard Report

For the most part, small business website owners just want to track and see at a glance if the visits are increasing month over month, and if their web leads are increasing month over month. If you have a solid SEO and or blogging strategy in place, you may want to see what blogs are bringing in visitors, and for those who convert from visits to leads, what the typical behavior pattern is for a buyer (the so-called “buyers journey”) through your website.

Well if that describes you, check out an amazing and totally free tool called Hubspot.

Hubspot Free

Hubspot is credited with inventing the concept of Inbound marketing which is a system of content designed to attract a visitor to a website and eventually convert that visitor to a lead through a series of steps. The ultimate goal is for that visitor to hit on a particular item on your site where they are willing to leave their contact information to receive an email or a download link. Once you have that information, your anonymous visitor has now become a self-identified viable sales prospect.

Like all software-as-a-service providers, you must pay for Hubspot in order to have access to all of its features, and Hubspot is not cheap. Luckily though, they have released a free version that gives you a pretty darn good set of analytic tools that are easy to implement and easy to understand.

With Hubspot Free, you can track visits month over month (or even week over week) and you can track lead conversions month over month. You can track your top blog posts, landing pages, emails and contacts all in one very easy to read dashboard. If you take the time to set everything up correctly, you can learn a lot about your website and how customers interact with your site without having to spend hours interpreting a bunch of hard to understand charts.

The novice user may need to spend some time watching tutorials to learn how to set up their Hubspot correctly, and set up may take a half a day, however, a more intuitive user could have everything set up in just a couple of hours.

Hubspot Dashboard  Hubspot Lead Source Report

Installing Hubspot is not as easy as Google Analytics, and you will have to install some code. By contrast, for Google Analytics, all you need to do is sign up for an account and prove that you are the site owner. If you have a WordPress site, there are tools available such as plugins to install the code easily to your site. Otherwise, you can reach out to your web development company to add the tracking code.

Conclusion

If you want your Mobile repair business to succeed online, you need to deal with SEO at some point. The point of this post is not to teach you about SEO, or even convince you that you need to manage it, but rather to help you find the resources you need to begin to measure and manage your site in order to make the right decisions to optimize.

There is no reason why these tools have to be mutually exclusive, and if you use them both, you have the ability to see what the trends are at a high level with Hubspot and you can dig deeper to see specific performance metrics with Google Analytics.


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