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I am old and crusty and I don’t like new things. I don’t like Twitter, Facebook, My Space, Four Square, or any other way that people connect without ever meeting or talking to each other. I like talking to people, hearing the inflection in their voice and letting them hear mine. That being said, doing business online isn’t optional at this point.
When I first came to work for Carloan.com, dealers would tell me “I don’t believe in the Internet”, but it has been years since I’ve heard that. We all see the statistics telling us that virtually every car deal starts with someone going online to do a little research. If SEO and SEM aren’t really your thing, that’s where we come in.
Google shows different results based on where you are in the country, but I’m willing to bet that no matter where you are, if you type “apply for a car loan” in the search bar we come up at or near the top of the organic (not paid for) results.
Whether you are an independent lot without the resources to set up an internet presence, or a multi-store group spending thousands per month on the web, third party leads will bring you folks that you otherwise would not have had the opportunity to speak with. These kinds of marketing programs can do the heavy lifting for you and increase your market share of the most profitable customers out there.
Remember: online traffic volume is only going to go up. Make sure that you're doing all you can to capture your fair share -- even if it means sharing the effort with someone outside your dealership.
Bob Harwood is the National Sales Manager for Carloan.com. Prior to joining Carloan.com six and half years ago, he worked on both sides of the financing process -- first at Capital One and then at a dealership here in Richmond. You can reach Bob at 804-521-8581 or via email atbharwoodATcarloan.com.