Community

Share your automotive expertise

2 Write a Blog Post

Filed in: Marketing

Why Should Dealers Care about Google's Panda 4.0 Update?

By DrivingSales News on May 29, 2014

Google provides the platform and we all play in their space. This was among the topics discussed in the article that we wrote about the Panda 4.0 update to the Google Search Algorithm. We provided a quick overview of the change, as well as winner and losers, however some of that information has changed. Let’s start with an update.

EBay, first seen as among the biggest losers to the latest Google update, was quite possibly unaffected by the change. An anonymous source, as reported by recode.net, has indicated that Ebay was rather levied with a manual penalty by Google. The online auction site faced what looked at first like an approximately 33% reduction in its organic traffic, seemingly overnight. The root cause was thought to be the Panda rollout, however, a source close to the situation says that it’s due to EBay having “category pages” created to bolster search results. This led to Google reportedly taking action against EBay.

Our last article also touched on that estimation that the Panda 4.0 Update should only have noticable impact for 7.5% of the english-speaking Google search results. Can a change on that scale have an impact on the organic traffic to dealership websites? This question was posed on the DrivingSales.com forum and not one person declared seeing a reduction in traffic, with one individual reporting an actual uptick.

If this update doesn’t impact dealers as far as those who have responded can tell, what about a future update with major implications? What if an update changes a lot of the standards by which your marketing campaigns are crafted? How will your dealership be ready? How do you stay current? A few industry insiders provided their thoughts. 

Grant Gooley, Director of Marketing at the Zanchin Automotive Group said that, “keeping up to date means constant research. I use tools as well like SEO MOZ. It's great for keeping on top of all Google changes. " Matthew Smith, Marketing Director at Darling's said that, "Unfortunately, there is no easy way to stay up to date on these changes. It’s a lot of work and it’s not always clear how potential changes might affect your sites. The best strategy is to read as much as possible from as many sources as possible. I also make a point to talk to people I know at various website providers, both automotive and otherwise, to get their thoughts. Information is power and it’s the only way to make smart decisions. Lastly, Robert Karbaum explained that, I feel operating solely on the latest digital media advancements can be problematic.  So often with Google big changes or new advancements are made, only to revert back weeks or months later.  The real skill is being aware of what is new and exciting and making long term, calculated decisions on how you will proceed.  Changing your entire marketing plan for every Google update will have you running around in circles; instead wait to see how the market reacts to new advancements before you jump on the bandwagon."

Other ideas include setting up Google email alerts on topics related to Google algorithm changes and following industry insiders on social media. Whatever your plan is, it’s simply important to have one. In order to stay ahead of the game, dealers need to know how changes at Google could impact their carefully crafted strategy. While with Google it seems that we never quite know what they will do next, staying on top of what they decide to do could be the difference between being ahead of, or behind the game. 

 

Comments

Well said

May 29th

Most interesting that eBay got slapped. That's a big slap.

June 4th

Comments 1 - 2 of 2

You must be logged in to comment

Login Create an account

Add your comments:

   

DrivingSales News' Recent Posts

Related Posts

  • LotLinx...Does It Measure Up To The Hype

    LotLinx has exploded in 2014 right when the progressive dealers started to migrate away from form submissions to VDP's to establish ROI. LotLinx deeplinks your new and used inventory to 3rd party partners and routes the VDP click thru to your VDP thus bypassing 3rd party VDP's and form submissions. Uncovered are concerns about Lotlinx reporting issues and inconsistent daily referral resulting in a unusual spike monthly. Can LotLinx resolve this and turn this good tool into a great tool as toutedRead post

  • 4 Tip and Tricks to Drive Engagement On Your Dealership Website

    We recently completed a usability study with REAL in-market car shoppers to determine how they engage with inventory on dealer websites while researching their next purchase. Participants in the study were recruited from the local Seattle area and consisted of people currently in-market for a new vehicle. The goal was simple— to find out directly from the mouths and mouses of real shoppers what makes car shoppers click when browsing your vehicle details pages (VDPs) and vehicle search results pages (VSRs).Read post

    By Cobalt on November 25, 2014

  • How To Maximize Your Dealership Black Friday Sales

    It's the holiday season, that means one thing, you only have a few weeks left to hit your year end sales quotas. While this turns into a very stressful time for many dealerships, it doesn't have to be this way; so put away your Grinch costume and use that shiny little device (smartphones) all you customers have to turn your inventory into perfectly wrapped presents that constantly keep driving off your lot. Everyone's Online According to PunchTab 90% of consumers plan to shop online this holiday season,and with consumers spending more than 15 hours per week researching on their smartphones capturing capturing your customers pre-purchase is essential to ultimately gaining their business.   You want to capture all these customers as they look for vehicles don't you?   Step 1: Simplify Their Search Shoppers make store visits after searching, and if they find all the information they are looking for they are 75% more likely to visit the store.   Take control of how your custom...Read post

  • Content Marketing Strategy: How to Create a Winning Company Blog

    Content marketing, in general, can provide many valuable benefits. It can help create and maintain a brand presence; assist in search engine optimization; and position executives as thought leaders. It can also serve as a valuable source of information for both customers and potential customers.   There are many types of content marketing. Technically speaking, everything your business creates and publishes is content marketing. This can include such items as marketing pieces, videos, blog articles, articles published in trade magazines, social media posts -- you name it. If your audience sees it, chances are that it’s content marketing.   While most businesses understand the importance of content marketing, many get stuck when trying to make it an ongoing reality. Think of it as an extreme case of writer’s block. Someone is tasked to create this “content” but they don’t know what to create on a regular and ongoing basis. Some companies create comprehensive content ma...Read post

  • New Google transparency requirements hold 3rd party partners more accountable for AdWords Mgmt fees

    Google is introducing two new requirements aimed at increasing transparency and accountability of third-party partners. Starting in November, agencies and other third-party firms and individuals that manage Google advertising for customers will need to conform to new third-party policies. The current policy mandates that third-parties disclose Ad Words media costs, clicks, and impressions at the account level. Now all management fees must be disclosed on invoices and be itemized to show the net cost of the Google portion separate from any management fees or mark-up. The days of ‘black box’ digital advertising packages appears to be coming to a close. Black box refers the idea that you pay your digital vendor or agency a monthly amount to provide a host of online services and they ‘optimize’ it among various digital elements such as paid search through Google and Bing, retargeting ads, banner ads, in banner video, search retargeting, or any of a host of other types of digital advertising. While there are positive points to this approach, it has also presented an opportunity for vendors to provide less than full disclosure regarding the ‘third-party’ fees they are actually charging to manage these services.Read post

  • "Selling" at the Zero-Moment-of-Truth

    As an industry, we often activate a vast array of tools...shiny widgets....and systems in which to be effective to the modern consumer….. HOWEVER....do our systems: Target - Communicate – Integrate together; As-One; in order to ensure Buyers are delivered at the ‘Zero Moment’ through a direct-path to OUR specific Stores? Websites? Telephones? As Dealers = "WE reserve the right, to Market OUR Brands, OUR Stores, OUR Inventory - with a single and direct connection to OUR stores, everytime!" Automotive News | Dealers > Best Practices ( Nov. 24, 2014 ) Cardinale Group makeover flexes digital Muscle http://www.autonews.com/article/20141124/RETAIL07/311249996/cardinale-group-makeover-flexes-digital-muscle   ...Read post

  • Does your dealership catch customers at zero moment of truth?

    As Digital Dealers we should all be familiar with the Google’s study that shows the behavior of a current ZMOT Auto buyer: – The majority of shoppers for automobiles are quite thoughtful – starting the process about 2-3 months before. Still, 14% of shoppers actually report spending less than a week on the decision making process. – Auto shoppers use on average 18.2 different sources of information – from TV, news articles, online, family, etc. to finally form their decision. – 97% of auto shoppers will be influenced by ZMOT-style advertising. Marketers should be thinking about how to use ZMOT to drive shoppers right into the dealership. – 71% of auto buyers used a search engine to help find a dealership At ZMOT we have proven that a dealership group that embraces digital marketing focused on targeting zero moment of truth buyers with systems that Target - Communicate – Integrate together as one in order to ensure Buyers are delivered at the "Zero Moment" throu...Read post

  • The Thrill of the Hunt

    That time of year is rapidly approaching -- Black Friday. Black Friday is typically the beginning of the Christmas shopping season and an indicator of how well retailers will fare throughout the holidays. In fact, many retailers report that the majority of their holiday season sales happen on this single day. Consumers go wild with excitement, and some even choose to participate by camping out for up to three weeks in advance, just to secure some super deal. It is not unusual for some people to get up at 2am to get in line at their favorite retailer. Other shoppers simply plant themselves in front of their computers in order to take advantage of retailers’ online sales. The facts are that very few of the items on sale warrant standing in massive lines for hours at a time. The fantastic deals are sometimes taken by the first few people in line.  This leaves the remainder of the people to scramble for items that are priced lower but are not necessarily worth the effort they spent to...Read post