The face of retail marketing has changed in the 21st century. The ever-present internet has taken over much of our social life and cut into our daily lives in ways that we could not have imagined 25 years ago. And you all know what happened in our industry with car sales and promotions shifting from the daily newspaper to the web!
Nowadays, every business must market to the world via the Internet or risk going extinct. Car dealerships are no exception to this rule. Advertising on media outlets, billboards and other traditional methods are still important, but now you have to consider ways to reach your market through the web, too.
Everybody’s On Their Phones
One of the hallmarks of modern life noted by people-watchers like late-night TV hosts, security cameras and casual bystanders is the number of people with their eyes glued to their cell phones. The jokes and films of people falling into fountains, tripping over park benches and the like are astounding in their quantity.
According to stats published by Inc.com, mobile users in the U.S. spend over four hours on their phones every day, more than double the amount it was just six years ago. While some of them are making phone calls, the vast majority of those people are browsing the internet and making searches. For us, we show that 60%-70% of our car shoppers shop by phone.
Grab Your Piece of The Pie
When it comes to marketing your business, every car dealer should be looking into the opportunities available through cell phone marketing. SmartBizGenius illustrates this with a recent post about stats they have compiled:
- 80% of corporate buyers use cell phones at work.
- In 2018, mobile devices accounted for 78 percent of web traffic
- JD Power found that 51% of new-vehicle Internet shoppers use a mobile device
- Google has started emphasizing mobile sites in search results over sites without a mobile version
Your Car Dealership Needs a Mobile Presence
NetPeak points out that 48 percent of local searches by mobile users ended with a phone call. The takeaway is that while getting those phone calls is still the most important part of making sales, how you get them has changed entirely. With over 70% of mobile users having made purchases after a call for information, it’s clear that mobile phone marketing is one great way to raise your sales numbers.
So what is mobile phone marketing plan? There are several models for marketing to cell phones and tablets.
- Make sure your web site is designed for mobile devices. Conventional websites for desktop computers often don’t look good or offer easy usage when viewed from a phone. It takes special knowledge and coding to produce websites that are mobile-ready. (Here is a poorly kept secret: We do this work all the time at SurgeMetrix so you can contact us if you have any questions.)
- Make sure that any landing pages you create are mobile optimized too. There is nothing worse than spending a lot of money promoting your dealership and wrecking that spend with a poorly designed mobile landing page. What is poor design? One that renders a page that is slow to load and hard to read on a phone. Test for yourself! A slow and hard to use landing page (or website!) will increase both your abandonment and bounce rates. Such losses are particularly bad if you are paying ad money since cost/lead will suffer.
- Identify ways to claim territory on a shopper’s phone. Look for solutions that help you gain access to a shopper’s phone and thus access to the most important device in their lives. The best solutions don’t require any new apps for a user to download, but are just really easy for the shopper to use. (Like websites, we can help you here too. Our SurgeOffers tool easily loads on a shopper’s phone without them having to download any new apps or jump through any special hoops.)
After all this is said and done, here is something to consider: In 2018, 93% of retailers using advanced personalization strategies like cell phone marketing enjoyed significant revenue increases. Do the same, and you will see the rewards of when your car dealership market using a mobile first strategy. If you don’t, you’re going to hurt your chances against the competition and your business is likely to be left behind.
If you want another post about cell phone usage statistics, check out How Valuable is a Shopper’s Phone to your Car Dealership?