If you’re looking to improve the online visibility of your automotive business, then Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a must-have strategy. Car dealership SEO can help your website rank higher in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), drive more traffic to your site, and ultimately increase sales. However, with so many websites and businesses competing for the same keywords, it can be challenging to stand out from the crowd.
In this blog, we will look at some benefits and essential tips for success in automotive SEO marketing, including keyword research, on-page optimization, backlinking, and local SEO. We will also look at some companies that provide these services so you can improve your online presence and stay ahead of your competitors.
What is Car Dealership SEO?
Car dealership SEO or Automotive search engine optimization is a process used to optimize a car dealership website for Google Search Results. It makes it easy for the website to be found for queries that are related to the car dealership business, services, and products. Onsite and offsite optimization techniques are included to help websites rank on search engines like Google and Bing. The higher the ranking, the more car buyers your website attracts to make a purchase from your dealership.
Why is SEO Important For Auto Dealers?
A car buyer’s journey, on average, includes approximately 900 digital interactions. These can be either watching videos of test drives or reading customer testimonials and reviews. SEO for the automotive industry can impact many of the touchpoints of a car-buying journey. Your car dealership website may not include all the information that a customer is looking for. The consumer will conduct thorough research before making a purchase decision, and find the right dealership for themselves. Your dealership must be the place the consumer visits to assess, test drive, and finally purchase a car, either online or in person.
Automotive SEO is important because it modifies the validity of navigation links, headlines, content and keywords which helps dealership website rank higher in search engine result pages. It also gives automotive solutions to businesses. When a consumer is searching for a dealership, they are going to first look for information on a search engine like Google. If your dealership is not present on top when they search for “car dealerships near me,” you will miss out on sales.
Here are some advantages that car dealership SEO offers, that highlight its importance.
1. SEO helps in improving your rank on search engine results.
2. It helps increase organic traffic to your site to boost sales.
3. Automotive SEO builds your credibility and brand trust.
4. It boots customer experience on your site.
5. Car dealer SEO increases engagement and conversion rates.
6. It is an affordable long-term strategy.
7. SEO results can be easily quantified.
SEO for Car Dealerships: A Complete Blueprint
A good SEO strategy should focus on 3 key areas – content, SEO, and backlinks.
People are always looking for information on cars and dealerships in their area. You need to ensure that your website has this information, putting your brand front and center. Automotive content marketing should cater to your audience’s needs, and help them understand how your business, products, and services can solve their problems. The content should also be car dealership SEO and traffic optimized for higher ranking in search engines.
You should focus on car dealership video content as well. People rely heavily on video content during their car buying journey; Google’s research states that over 70% of auto shoppers find online videos helpful in determining the auto products they want to buy, while 56% can be convinced to purchase a vehicle solely by watching 360-degree visuals.
Optimization can be applied to all elements of your website, with keyword addition and keyphrase usage on web copies. The SEO process includes on-page, off-page, technical, as well as local dealership SEO. keywords should not be overused, which can lead to your website being marked as a spam site by Google. Text can be added to images, and title tags, URLs, and meta descriptions can also be included.
You should include high-quality backlinks in your SEO strategy to increase brand credibility, trust, and website credibility. Building backlinks requires manual outreach, cerebral site citations, and listing on leading platforms in the automotive industry.
The Basics of Automotive SEO
In this internet age, the growth of digital marketing has been rapid as brands are recognizing the ease through which they can reach their target audience. The old standbys are now gone since car dealerships can not completely rely on it. As more and more consumer change their shopping habits and evolve. More people are showing their preferences towards towards Internet.
Auto dealerships have to understand and use the digital landscape. Digital marketing is more than display advertising and search engine marketing. It also involves SEO and user-friendly web design, online reputation management, usage of auto SEO plugins, and tracking reviews. In the shorter term, automotive SEO refers to an online marketing strategy in which car dealership websites improve their visibility on search engines. Many car dealership SEO companies implement on-page optimizations, structured data usage, and SEO initiatives.
5 Automotive SEO Best Practices For Driving Business In 2023
The platform of digital marketing is always changing, with new trends being added. One needs to have an updated automotive SEO guide to reap the benefits of digital marketing.
Here are some best practices to follow for automotive SEO:
1. Improve your Google business profile
Auto SEO is not restricted to your website. A GBP, also known as a Google business profile, is important for attracting customers to your inventory. This is why many top digital marketing specialists have been applying GBP in their organic SEO strategy. There are a few ways through which you can optimize your GBP. They are:
Relevancy & Branding: This is a simple task. Just make sure that the users are properly equipped with all the relevant information, including essential automotive SEO terms, to understand your identity and the nature of your work. Begin with the fundamentals. Complete your GBP (Google Business Profile) in its entirety by providing accurate information for each available field. This entails selecting all pertinent business categories and subcategories, specifying your services, vehicle brands, and types, as well as incorporating native images, among other details.
Interaction is necessary: After setting up, most of your efforts will be used on user interactions. In addition to posting new content and images, it’s important to add user questions and answers to your “Q & A” section.
This practice isn’t just valuable for your users; it also plays a crucial role in keeping Google well-informed, making sure that your Google Business Profile remains prominently displayed at the top of numerous search results pages.
Track the traffic after linking: The main goal of GBP is to guide users to your website. Ensuring your brand and location relevance requires a strategic approach: draw users to your website by creating locally focused landing pages and content. One of the important aspects of automotive SEO is its ability to track traffic. This is where the Urchin Tracking Module, known as UTM, becomes valuable. Essentially, a UTM is a small piece of code that you append to the end of a website URL. This code enables you to recognize and monitor the user traffic originating from your Google Business Profile (GBP).
2. Align your organic efforts
As discussed earlier, it’s important to establish an aligned user journey from your Google Business Profile (GBP) to your website using landing page content. However, there are additional steps you can take to align your GBP and website for improved organic SEO effectiveness. Remember to boost your organic SEO authority. Within your organic SEO strategy, it’s important to apply content that caters to the specific business categories listed on your Google Business Profile (GBP). As an example, your SEO team would create tailored landing pages featuring distinct content relevant to categories like “vehicle repair” or “auto body shop” within the geographically relevant region.
3. Fixed Ops
Currently, every aspect of the automotive retail industry encourages drivers to improve the lifespan of their vehicles. Consequently, the significance of dealership fixed operations has increased significantly. It is essential to allocate sufficient space in your organic automotive SEO strategy to enhance your website and Google Business Profile (GBP) for all the on-site vehicle services you offer.
4. Interact with the community
It is important to adopt a local mindset if one wants to achieve local rankings. Your potential client resides within that local area, and they enjoy staying informed about noteworthy events and enjoyable activities in their community. This approach can be a highly effective component of a robust and all-encompassing organic SEO strategy. Encourage your community engagement through new content on your website’s blog and landing pages, as well as through GBP posts. Share your local affiliations, yearly fundraisers, or special events. Highlight your preferred neighborhood eateries and stores. Discuss and explore the history and notable attractions of your area or region.
The Power of Paid Media and SEO Working Together
To outsmart and perform better than your competition, both the teams, paid search and SEO teams must work together to increase overall efficiency, total ROI of your search, and effectiveness. To succeed in this intensifying digital media ecosystem, real-time communication and collaboration is the key.
Some key pieces of information paid media can share with SEO:
1. Search Query Reports & Metrics
Search query reports play an important role in providing a more profound insight into how users are conducting searches for products or services relevant to the company. This data has gained increased significance in light of the evolving search landscape, as Google and Bing move towards widening their match types, executing exact match keywords less precise. SEO professionals collaborate with paid media teams, allowing them to refine their target-specific user intents, and content strategy and improve the overall validity of website pages.
2. Search for metrics and keywords
Keywords serve as the base of search engine optimization. When the paid media team shares search keywords along with relevant metrics like search volume, competition, and conversion rates, they provide the SEO team with invaluable insights.
3. High-performing paid search ad copy
Through paid search campaigns, useful insights about effective ad copy that are driving clicks and conversations. Through the exchange of high-performing ad copy, the paid media team encourages the SEO team to grasp the messaging and language that connect effectively with the target audience.
4. Calendars, events & holidays
The partnership between the paid media and SEO teams facilitates efficient strategizing and aligning of marketing initiatives. Through the exchange of promotional schedules, upcoming events, holidays, and significant dates, the paid media team guarantees that the SEO team can harmonize their content and optimization strategies accordingly.
5. High-performing paid social Ad copy
Paid social campaigns generate valuable insights into the ad copy and messaging preferences of social media users. When the paid media team shares the most successful paid social ad copy, they allow the SEO team to align their content strategy across various platforms.
6. High-performing audiences from social, search and display
Target audience is important in both SEO and paid media efforts. By providing top-performing audience insights from different channels, for example, social media, search, and display. The paid media team enhances the SEO team’s comprehension of their target demographics, interests, and behaviors.
Pieces of information the SEO team must share are:
- Meta description & meta title
- Page 1 ranked & striking distance keywords & performance
- Top organic pages & content
- Google search console (GSC) keyword data
- Google business profile (GBP) optimizations
- Technical SEO recommendations and mobile page speed improvements
Important SEO Metrics That Matter
SEO metrics are the proper indicators that can help you understand whether your SEO is properly working or not. Here are some of the SEO metrics that are worth tracking:
1. Organic traffic
It refers to all non-paid clicks received from search engines. If the organic traffic is going upwards, then this could be a sign that your overall SEO efforts are coming to fruition. However, more organic traffic does not mean more sales until or unless you monetize your website traffic by showing ads.
2. Keyword rankings
This refers to the website’s ranking for a particular keyword. Some keywords hold greater importance for your ranking efforts than others. In general, the closer a keyword aligns with your product and business, the more essential it becomes for you to secure a high ranking.
3. Search visibility
It represents the portion of clicks for your monitored keywords that direct traffic to your website. It’s essentially the SEO equivalent of Share of Voice (SOV), a critical marketing key performance indicator (KPI) that gauges your brand’s presence within the market.
4. Traffic value
Traffic value is the cost you would incur if all your organic clicks were generated through PPC search ads. In broad terms, an increased traffic value means that your organic traffic holds greater value and significance for your business.
5. Organic traffic conversions
Conversions refer to significant actions taken by your website visitors, such as making a purchase, registering, or subscribing to a service. Monitoring these actions across all your traffic channels, including organic, is a common practice for most businesses.
6. Referring domains
This domain refers to websites that link to your website. Backlinks are among the crucial factors influencing Google rankings, and there is an evident positive connection between referring domains and organic website traffic.
7. Number of indexed pages
This shows how many pages a search engine has in its index. “Before your pages can appear in search engine results pages (SERPs) and attract organic traffic, they must first be indexed. However, it’s also important to exclude certain pages from being indexed.
Key Elements of a Local SEO Strategy for Automotive
Every automobile showroom or service center website should be well-crafted and finely tuned for optimization, including an automotive SEO list. It’s important to provide a concise company overview, along with essential information such as a map, opening hours, and your address. The website should also feature comprehensive product/service descriptions and high-quality photographs. However, an appealing design alone won’t suffice. Effective SEO is vital to ensure proper website promotion and traffic generation. This entails a series of activities that significantly enhance your chances of achieving high search engine rankings.
1. High-quality content
Creating different content stands as a fundamental component of any SEO strategy across various industries, including the automotive sector. Ensure your content offers trustworthy and comprehensive details about the available vehicles or services.
2. Specific selection of keywords
Careful keyword selection is pivotal in effective auto SEO. Given the high level of competition, it’s advisable to conduct thorough research and choose keywords that align with the search queries potential buyers commonly use.
3. Appealing photos and graphics
Car dealers understand the importance of providing customers with trustworthy vehicle images. High-quality visuals are an essential element of every printed catalog, regardless of the car’s brand or model. The same principle applies to websites, but in this context, it’s also essential to keep image optimization in mind. Leaving the ALT attribute empty is a major error when engaging in SEO efforts.
4. Vlogs, blogs and tutorials
Consumers typically seek information before making any product or service purchase. Within the automotive sector, a company blog serves as an excellent platform for promoting your services and vehicles. Employing creative content and videos can effectively sway potential customers, increasing the likelihood of their return to your store. Videos and instructional guides, especially in the context of car servicing and workshops, prove to be valuable resources. Vlogs enable you to showcase your expertise and competence in vehicle repairs, enhancing your reputation for trustworthiness among your audience.
5. Social media
Presently, social media platforms stand out as some of the most influential channels for promoting products and services online. These platforms are large communities of individuals eager to exchange their thoughts and experiences regarding various products.
Automotive social media marketing maintains an active presence on well-known platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter enabling you to showcase your offerings and cultivate connections with potential customers.
6. Local SEO for the automotive industry
Local automotive SEO is centered around specific regions, making it important to establish a Google My Business profile. This allows users to conveniently access details about your business hours, find your location and directions, and peruse customer reviews with ease.
On-Page SEO Elements You Can Optimize Right Now
Almost every website online aspires to attain top positions in search results, or at the very least, desires to be there. However, many are uncertain about where to begin, which is entirely understandable, given the vast and intricate nature of SEO. It can be broadly categorized into on-page and off-page SEO, but it scratches the surface. Achieving top search rankings for your target keywords involves additional factors and strategies.
Some essential on-page SEO elements that you can optimize are
- Title tags
- Meta description
- Heading tags
- Page speed
- Internal & external links
- User experience
Google’s Search Quality Rating Principle E-E-A-T
EEAT stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. Google uses this principle to determine the quality of a search result and rank it. It’s a part of Google’s search quality rater guidelines. People use it to determine a website’s quality of search results. Also, these people are known as quality raters. Their feedback helps make improvements in the algorithm that determines the running of your website.
Let’s understand the three components of this principle.
Quality content frequently showcases the creator’s firsthand knowledge of the subject, providing proof that their recommendations have been put to the test and that their insights are genuine and valid.
Google determines this through the main content of your pages. The content should showcase your expertise, credentials, and qualifications and an author on the topic being discussed. It is a check to determine if the person is well-versed in the topic.
This refers to your business’s reputation in the industry. The opinions of experts and influencers matter here. The authoritativeness of your website, your main content, and you as an author of the main content are scrutinized. It helps if other authorities in the industry provide links to your content; it reflects that people know you, and look at you as a leader and a good source of information on the industry.
The main content, its author, and the website and gauged by quality raters to determine trustworthiness. Ensure you tell who wrote the content, edit out any inaccuracies, add trustworthy sources as citations, and don’t hide content in a wall of ads.
SEO VS Traditional Marketing
Traditional way of marketing has no real rhyme. It earns its customers through just luck. There is no effort of targeting in traditional marketing. Through usage of many strategies that SEO provides, you will be able to market products and services to those people who need the most.
Another significant contrast between the two strategies lies in cost, with traditional marketing being considerably more expensive.
One of the primary factors contributing to the effectiveness of SEO is its emphasis on meeting user needs rather than just focusing on search engine requirements. SEO strategies prioritize the user experience, and most of them revolve around addressing the specific needs of the target audience. For instance, during keyword research for an SEO campaign, you compile a list of keywords that hold the greatest significance for users. Subsequently, you integrate these high-value keywords into content that offers valuable information to the audience.
Best Automotive & Car Dealer SEO Marketing Services
Confused about which Automotive SEO tools and services to opt for to grow your business? Consider the following:
- SocialSEO: It is a fast-growing company and one-stop solution for automotive search engine optimization, SEM, email and video marketing solutions, etc.
- HigherVisibility: They are a digital marketing agency that can help you with website design, paid promotions and media, and SEO.
- SmartSites: They have over 450 5-star reviews and can help you stay ahead of your competition with excellent digital marketing services.
- Sure Oak: This is a full-service car dealership SEO marketing agency, with professionals to help you with targeted organic traffic that captures more leads.
- Evestar: They are an ecommerce marketing agency that helps dealerships increase profits through automotive SEO marketing.
- Lounge Lizard: They use well-crafted digital marketing, SEO, and PPC strategies for dealerships worldwide.
- Delante: It is a data-driven international SEO and SEM strategy planning agency with KPI-oriented processes.
- Joseph Studios: They use intelligence-based marketing to help you speak to your buyers and influence their purchasing decisions.
- Consumer Buzz: They specialize in strategy creation that is cost-effective and personalized for your business.
- Expert Reputation: They make sure that your business becomes easy to find on Google through well-designed car dealership search engine optimization plans.
How does Content Marketing Help SEO?
As simple as it may seem, increasing website traffic is achieved by optimizing content with keywords that potential customers often search for on a search engine. Primarily, when we talk about search engines, we are referring to Google, which accounts for nearly all (94%) of search engine traffic. Therefore, when it comes to SEO, businesses stand to gain the most by adhering to Google’s guidelines. Prioritizing content marketing and applying it in your SEO strategy will provide new pieces of content adds your most valuable keywords. Instead of over-optimizing your already existing content, content marketing will provide you with additional value for your website without affecting the search ranking negatively.
In conclusion, car dealership SEO is a crucial aspect of digital automotive marketing that can help your vehicle retail business reach its target audience, increase website traffic, and ultimately drive sales. By following the tips for success outlined in this blog post, such as conducting thorough keyword research, optimizing website content, and creating valuable backlinks, automotive businesses can improve their search engine rankings and stay ahead of the competition.
It’s important to note that automotive SEO for car dealers is an ongoing process that requires consistent effort and monitoring. Search engine algorithms are constantly evolving, and businesses must keep up with the latest trends and updates to maintain their visibility and ranking. Overall, automotive search engine optimization is a long-term investment that can yield significant returns for businesses that are willing to put in the time and effort.