Conversion Optimization Basics for Car Dealers

When the components of your digital marketing strategy have a poor conversion rate, even if all the traffic from the 4.479 billion active Internet users in the world flood your website, read your blog, and view your paid search ads and social media posts, your business will hardly see any change in revenue.

When the conversion process works the right way, these visitors, online searchers, and social media followers will move further down the marketing funnel, becoming a lead.

Basically, any of the following will happen:

  • They complete a contact form on your website or lead capture page.
  • They sign up to receive your newsletter or subscribe to your blog posts.
  • They click a link in a paid search ad for one of your offers.
  • They click a link in a social media post to your ad, website, or blog.

If any of those things are happening, your conversion process is going well. If not, your conversion process is going poorly. 

Either way, consider the following information on the basics of conversion rate optimization (CRO). Doing so will help you create an action plan for your dealership.

Basics of Conversion Optimization

Although the omnichannel approach to increasing traffic is great, the more important objective is to streamline your strategy for lead conversion. That is how leads become customers and sales are made.

Consider implementing the following elements into your digital marketing strategy:

  • User-friendly website design
  • Relevant website and blog content
  • User engagement tracking
  • Effective landing pages
  • Paid search ad optimization
  • Engaging social media posts

User-friendly Website Design

Forrester Research study showed that a website or blog with a good design can increase the conversion rate by 200 percent or more.

With superior user experience (UX), the conversion rate could increase by up to 400 percent.

Basically, the easier your website is to navigate, the more likely it is that visitors will stay on your site longer. This increases the potential for the user to convert.

The site bounce rate will also decrease, which will, in turn, increase your online ranking.  

You only have one chance to make a good first impression. Make it count.

Relevant Website and Blog Content

Google processes over 3.5 billion online searches daily. While not all of those searches are for vehicle-related information, many are.

According to Think With Google research, 92 percent of consumers search online before purchasing a vehicle.

They watch videos, take 360-degree digital test drives, review price ranges, check lifestyle fits, research features, and look for vehicle comparisons.

Website and blog content for your dealership need to meet relevant keyword searches if you expect to draw visitors to your site and keep them there longer.

Showcasing the following information will help with CRO:

  • New model arrivals
  • New and used vehicle stock
  • Incentives and digital offers
  • Financing information
  • An online calculator for trade-in vehicle valuation
  • Information on fees and local taxes for precise price estimates
  • DIY servicing tips

Although popups are good for capturing lead information, they decrease the UX and increase your bounce rate. Use them sparingly.

Make sure that information on your website is relevant. Outdated content, for example, can cause you to lose a sale when a buyer comes to your showroom and asks for the price listed on your site.

Tracking User Engagement

You want to drive the user from your homepage to the rest of the website. The more they engage on your website, the more they’ll want to visit your showroom.

Use Google Analytics to analyze the traffic to your website and identify visitor locations and links they clicked on. While the information obtained from Google Analytics is not as in-depth, the tool itself is free.

Consider using click-mapping software to detect areas on your website that visitors clicked on. You can even track viewing areas that don’t have a link!

Some things you’ll learn when using click-mapping software:

  • It identifies content that was clicked on but not linked to other information. Maybe users would like vehicle photos magnified or other features listed.
  • It finds the content that users are focusing on the most. You can use this data to create similar content and maximize conversion rates.
  • It pinpoints the links with the most clicks. If you have several links on the homepage to the same content, it will still show you the most clicked.
  • Depending on the software, it can detect scrolling speed. This can help identify where most visitors spend the majority of time on your site.

Working with a digital marketing agency to develop a digital marketing strategy can help increase conversion rates and decrease the cost per conversion. You’ll save money and get a better ROI for your marketing efforts.

Utilizing Effective Landing Pages

Effective landing pages can be the difference between a sale for your dealership and a loss to the competition.

While many marketing teams focus mostly on increasing traffic, they should really be focusing on increasing lead conversion.

With the right landing pages, you can more easily reach leads in the marketing funnel who have experienced touchpoints with your dealership but haven’t yet converted to customers.  

Consider using the following tips to create more effective landing pages:

  • Messaging: A concise message will guide the lead through to the CTA.
  • Headlines: The headlines must catch the lead’s attention and relate to your message.
  • Simplicity: Simple and direct landing pages prevent confusion.
  • Mobile: Blogs, landing pages, and other website content must be mobile-friendly.
  • Pathway: The page needs a clear pathway to the call-to-action (CTA).
  • Testing: Complete A/B testing to identify the pages that convert best.

Optimizing Paid Search Ads

When paid search ads are part of your digital marketing strategy, your main goals are to increase the conversion rate and decrease the costs per conversion.

Optimize your paid search ads for improved conversion rates with the following tips:

  • Consistency: It’s important to make sure the ad content matches the content on your landing page. Inconsistent content will increase the page bounce rate.
  • Keywords: Test multiple keyword match types to increase ad clicks. With broad match keywords, you can expand reach potential. Add negative keyword phrases to exclude keywords you don’t want your ad displayed for.
  • Targeting: Make sure you use geo-targeting, demographics, and online behavior to target your ideal audience.
  • Testing: A/B testing is important for increasing the conversion rate. It allows you to test the elements of your ad content, landing page, and website. This testing uses two different options to see which converts better.
  • Tracking: Identify the conversion rates of past PPC campaigns and compare them with the current ones. With Google AdWords and Google Analytics, you’ll be able to easily track this data.
  • Remarketing: Some leads won’t click links to your landing pages. When you remarket ad content to the same leads, the chance that visitors will eventually click through to your landing pages and become customers increases.

Effective Social Media Posts

With over 7.7 billion people in the world and 3.5 billion active users online, one in three people is active on social media platforms. Is your dealership reaching the right people online to draw them to your website and showroom?

Social media marketing is another way to drive sales for your dealership and bring those people in to take a test drive and purchase a vehicle.

However, you may not be getting the conversion rates that you want with your current social media posts.

You need a strategy to increase the CTR. Get off to a good start by implementing the following tips.

  • KPI: Clearly define key performance indicators (KPI) so you know whether you’re meeting your goals or not. Adjust your strategy accordingly.
  • CTA: Always include a call-to-action in your posts so followers know what you want them to do. 
  • Engage: Engage with people 80 percent of the time, and only promote 20 percent of the time. It may sound counter-intuitive, but you want engagement that leads to conversions.
  • Investigate: Check out what your competition is doing. See what’s working for them and create a similar strategy.
  • Impress: Use engaging photos, videos, customer testimonials, and behind-the-scenes info. Your social media followers want to be impressed by your content.
  • Fans: Focus on follower engagement with your dealership. Use customer testimonials, contests, and questions in posts.
  • Human: Remember that your visitors are human beings. Cultivate a relationship with followers and increase the CTR.
  • Positivity: Keep your posts positive. Make 2020 the year your followers can rely on your social media accounts to deliver the relevant, engaging content they want.

Boost Sales by Implementing These Conversion Optimization Basics

With a user-friendly website design that features relevant content, your conversion rates will almost certainly improve.

Personalized ad content, effective landing pages, optimized paid search ads, and the right social media posts can make a difference.

Working with the professional J&L Marketing team can help you implement these conversion basics for your car dealership.

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