We all know that just having a website, no matter how great, is not enough to make sales in the automotive industry. LEARN MORE
Did you know that by default, Google Places is setup to market your car dealership only within a 20 mile radius of your dealership? Do you sell and deliver cars to consumers more than 20 miles away? Well of course you do! Do you want to increase your automotive advertising reach? Yes!
However, many of the Google Places listing that I check for car dealers are NOT setup properly for their business. This impacts the number of times a dealership's Business Listing will appear in search results. For some dealers in metro areas, their Google Places listing will show over 15,000 a month. With this in mind, anything that could increase the visibility of your local business listing should be embraced.
As I stated above, Google Places service area DEFAULTS to a 20 mile service radius around the business address. This is one of the most important setting on your Google Places listing because it sets the geographic positioning of the consumers you serve. Car dealers routinely deliver cars to customers that are outside of a 20 mile radius of their business. With this is mind, dealers should inspect your service area settings in Google.
Dealers that have physical locations near bodies of water will find that a simple radius setting is not the most accurate map of their service area.
In the screen shot below, Harris Auto Group in Canada is located on Victoria Island. If they left their Google Maps service area radius set at 20 miles, which is the default, they would not cover Victoria which is a major market for the island.
Fortunately, Google Places will allow you to enter in specific town names to create a polygon that covers the areas that the dealership serves. In the photo above, you can see that the shaded area was created by inputting the towns in the "List of Areas Served".
I encourage dealers not to abuse the Service Area setting and show unrealistic service coverage maps. I have a feeling that Google may penalize anything that would be contrived as scamming the system. I would say that a 50 mile radius for most dealers is reasonable. So take a minute and look into your Google Places service area setting and see if it has been set too conservatively.
Also, while you are looking at your Google Places listing, make sure that it has:
If you have any questions on Google Places, just type in your question below. If you are going to NADA in February, make sure you stop into one of my workshops. You can check my schedule on this link: Brian Pasch NADA Workshops.