Do This Now: Examine Your Digital Ad Spend and ROI

By: Eric Grabowski, National Accounts Director

Is it just me, or has the 2nd Quarter of 2017 gotten off to a fairly sluggish start? Don’t worry – no need to panic just yet, but the facts have shown that new and used car sales are down. So how can automotive dealers overcome this slump in sales? Are dealers currently positioned to use digital advertising to their advantage? There is fierce competition online so it’s time prepare accordingly.

It is better to get ahead and beat out the competition now, before it’s too late.

In 2008, the automotive industry experienced a historic, transformative period in retail vehicle sales, forcing dealerships to, “get smart or go away.” Dealers don’t need to worry about a repeat of that right now, but that doesn’t mean to not be prepared. It is better to get ahead and beat out the competition now, before it’s too late.

The automotive industry seems to be in a ‘hunker down and see what happens’ frame of mind.

In talking to major dealer groups across the country and sharing information at dealer 20 groups, I keep hearing a common theme, “Watch your expenses.” The automotive industry seems to be in a “hunker down and see what happens” frame of mind. Instead of bracing for impact, dealers should do what they can to prepare and avoid it right now!

Kevin Frye from the Wyler Auto Group recently spoke at the 2017 Digital Marketing Strategies Conference with valuable insight on measuring marketing success. One of his key points focused on tracking more than just the destination of traffic in Google Analytics. He explained the importance of partnering with a vendor who can help dealers excel in utilizing and tracking digital advertising to increase car shopper business.

Here are two key strategies to consider when working to gain online car shoppers:

  1. Ensure all digital ads are engaging enough to get car shoppers to the door, on the phone, or to the new or used car dealership’s website.
  2. Implement a streamlined process that ensures online car shoppers can easily find what they need once they arrive on the auto dealership’s website. If they want to call the dealership or step foot into the showroom, can they quickly find the information they need to do so?

With the right strategies in place, it’s time to evaluate how well dealers execute in these two areas.

When it comes to online advertising, increasing a digital ad budget is not always the right answer. Instead, automotive dealers must spend money in the right places to get the results they desire. This concept seems simple, but too many times dealers throw money into SEM regardless of the results. The same can be said for social advertising, where quality over quantity rings true. And let’s not forget about SEO, an extremely important facet of your digital strategy, but a channel that is constantly changing and requires frequent monitoring.

Don’t waste any more time – or more importantly money – on an ineffective digital strategy.

Don’t waste any more time – or more importantly money – on an ineffective digital strategy. Look at your car dealership’s advertising spend and pay close attention to results from each channel. Take the time to discern what’s working and what’s not.

Making these decisions can be difficult, especially in the ever- changing realm of digital advertising, but don’t worry Dominion Dealer Solutions can help! We provide dealerships with the solutions and services they need to stay ahead of the competition. Our specialists put dealerships’ ad dollars to work in the most effective areas. Call 877.421.1040 to get started with a Digital Specialist today!

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