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That said, the dealership is the place the customer goes to assess, drive, and ultimately purchase their next car – whether in person or online.
Why is Car Dealer SEO Important?
When it comes to determining keywords for your dealership’s SEO strategy, you want to get specific. One way you can think about and narrow down your keywords is by audience. There are three basic audiences that keywords can be geared toward.
The foundation for effective car dealer SEO is a great website. While website design and SEO are two different things, they’re closely related. Your dealership isn’t going to rank in search results if you have a bad website – it’s just not possible.
While we’re talking about listings, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention reviews. Reviews are an important part of your online presence and can impact your SEO as well. Respond to all of your reviews and ask your customers for feedback to keep building up your online reputation.
Voice search is something your dealership needs to be prepared for. By this year, it’s predicted that more than 35% of the U.S. population will use voice search.
You can use HTML tags – like title tags, meta descriptions, and image alt text – to signal to these bots what a page is about, which helps simplify the indexing of the page and increases your chances of ranking for relevant searches.
When it comes to keywords, it can feel like the possibilities are endless – your dealership likely has a large inventory of a variety of models, specific makes, and other services – and many keywords are broad and will be extremely competitive to rank for. For example, the top automotive keyword WordStream identified is “car” with over 9 million searches.
Car Dealer SEO Best Practice #1: Make Your Website Design SEO-Friendly.
Google outlines the search journey “moments” for a typical car buyer.
The car-buying journey is complex, with multiple touchpoints spread over weeks, months, or even years. If you want a chance at getting your dealership in front of these car buyers, you need to be present at every point in their journey.
So, now that we understand what car dealer SEO is and why it matters, let’s talk about actually getting found on search engines. In order to rank for searches related to your dealership, you need to employ some car dealer SEO best practices.
Car Dealer SEO Best Practice #2: Choose the Right Keywords.
The customer obviously needs this information to get in touch with you. Search engines use citations to verify the quality of your website, and to a certain degree, your business.
The first audience is the local market. Just like you’d kick back with a can of “pop” in South Dakota and a can of “Coke” in Mississippi, local markets have different vernaculars that they might use to ask a search engine the same basic thing.
That’s where car dealer SEO comes in.
And, because we know that the majority of consumers begin the car-buying journey by searching on a search engine, it stands to reason that getting your business found on search engines should be a top priority.
Your dealership local listing, or local citation, is any online mention of your dealership’s name, address, phone number, website, business hours, and other basic information on the web. Your local listing is what comes up when a user types in a search term like “BMW dealership Hawaii,” what they see in the contact info when they visit your Facebook page, and even how a third-party source like an online news website has your information listed.
Use the Right Keywords & Key Phrases.
Using the right keywords and key phrases should come naturally when writing content on your website. When you practice writing conversationally, your content is more easily readable and searchable as well. Additionally, you can uncover keywords and terms you may have never thought of on your own if you take time to research what people are searching for. Find ways to implement these keywords into your content in a natural and conversational way.
We can’t stress this one enough. Google prioritizes mobile-friendly sites. Mobile-friendly pages place at the top of Google search results because 87% of Internet users have a smartphone, and Google wants to serve them a responsive online experience. Implementing a responsive website is essential- if your site doesn’t display correctly on a mobile device, studies show that 61% of users are unlikely to return.
Google can’t understand the content of an image unless you provide the content to explain it. Even though optimizing your images most likely won’t help your content to rank better in organic search results, it will affect how high your images appear in the image search on Google. Correctly optimizing your images can help drive traffic to your site.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the most effective online marketing strategies today, especially when paired with other digital marketing tactics. Understanding best practices for implementing SEO on your website will help you be more successful in ranking higher in Google search results.
It’s no secret that search engines favor original content. A search engine’s main goal is to serve the best possible results to the user. Who wants to view ten sites with the same content? Make sure your content is unique but still helpful and relevant. Using popular industry keywords and key phrases helps your site rank higher in search results, but it’s important to have original content as well.
It’s important to remember that you have complete control over internal linking on your website. An internal link connects two pages of the same site. Promote other pages on your site and send your visitors to other pages to keep people active and engaged.
SEO has evolved impressively over the years, and opportunities are growing exponentially. Incorporating high-performing SEO content into your dealership website takes time, but it works. Don’t underestimate what SEO can do for your business.