All politics is local, as the saying goes, but so is the automotive dealership business. Which today means, if you’re a dealer then it is absolutely essential that you market on mobile platforms, such as smartphones and tablets. Why? Because according to a 2011 study more than 50 percent of all local searches are performed on mobile devices. What’s more, mobile Internet usage is expected to surpass desktop Internet usage by 2014.
When adding mobile devices to your marketing mix, here are five tools or techniques to consider:
#1 Mobile-Friendly Website: The first step is to be mobile-friendly by having a separate mobile web site, optimized for display on smartphones and tablets. Your mobile site must load fast, have simple navigation, be free of clutter, and provide content that fits a smaller screen (if possible, no zooming or pinching required). Make sure your site is optimized for both local searches and immediate action, including GPS maps and click-to-call buttons. Minimize your use of Flash or find a substitute for it, as Apple mobile devices are still not using Flash. Your mobile-friendly site should work in both horizontal and vertical formats. Above all, your main site should automatically redirect to the mobile-friendly version of your site when accessed from a mobile device.
#2 SEO Mobile: SEO mobile is like regular SEO, only different. Clear, concise keywords are critical for SEO, of course, but a mobile search experience could also include type of device and current location as key elements in how search engines rank your results. Remember, mobile users typically access the web with a small device, tapping either a hard keypad or a virtual one. And, most likely, they’re multi-tasking, juggling their palm-sized smartphone while riding a bus, watching a movie or pretending to listen to a boring lecture. According to research, 15 characters and 40 seconds define the average mobile search. That’s not a lot of time or space to work with, so the rule of thumb in SEO mobile is “less is best.”
#3 Geo-marketing: Geo-marketing is your dealership’s online presence, inventory, and special offers in front of a local potential car buyer who is using his or her mobile device to research the market. Such buyers now have a real-time shopping assistant in their smartphone, which includes a GPS chip that can identify both where they are and where your nearest dealership is located. Remember to verify your business address on Google maps (and other listings) to confirm the location.
from Brent Albrecht, Marketing Director at . Brent can be reached via or by dialing 877–326-7624.