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Derrick Woolfson

Derrick Woolfson Business Development

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Show Me What I'm Searching For?! Top Two Must Haves

It is hard sometimes to imagine what the average customer searches for regarding services when you are on the dealer level every day. But if you take a step back for a moment - looking at it from the customers perspective - they want to know what is included in the service, cost of service, and when they can book the appointment! Sounds relatively simple, no? Yet more often than not many dealers fail to provide information regarding their pricing or repair descriptions. Not to mention scheduling the appointment, itself, can be quite the chore! 

Think about it. Each dealer has its own definition of “service” plans other than of what the OEM offers for service intervals.  For example, when the customer searches “20 thousand mile service” they may or may not get the dealer that they purchased from because the dealer fails to have that information on their site. 

Just this past week I searched “(OEM) 20k mile service (location),” and to my surprise, the dealership did not even show up until the 5th page! Yet service is the money the maker, no? Instead, other dealers that were well over an hour away populated. And as you can imagine, why would I call the dealer 1-2 hours away for service? I wouldn’t. So why would any other customer? Are we forgoing business opportunities for the sake of not providing them with information? 

That said, here are two top tips for ensuring that when a customer is searching for service with your OEM (in your backyard) that your dealer not only shows up BUT offers relevant content with a strong call to action! 

Service Landing Page 

When is the last time you updated your service landing page? What does it even include? For the OEM I used as an example when I searched “OEM service” their dealer did show up. But not when I did “OEM 20k mile service.” However, when I clicked on the “OEM Service” link the landing page was for the 5k, 10k, 20k and 30k mile interval service? That did not make much sense given the search was simple “OEM Service.”  The other alarming issue was the “information” about the service intervals were “images” with “text” vs. actual text. It also failed to offer other services they did. 

One thing you can do to improve this situation would be to offer appointment Scheduling where the customer can “select” vehicle, “estimated mileage,” and “have you serviced with us before?” all of which would guide the customer to completing what we all want:  “the service appointment!” 

But make no mistake, if you ask them questions, but then fail to provide any relevant information they will not the only exit. They will become frustrated. All without having booked their appointment. 

Service Blog 

Having a service blog might seem daunting, but it could be advantageous. Only if it offers relevant content such as services, OEM maintenance schedules, and their importance, what service amenities are included, customer reviews, customer workshops, etc. The goal is to offer relevant content. The other advantage of having a service blog that explains services in a meaningful way is if a customer were to search “xyz” service, and you are the only dealer that offers the cost, what it does, and when the next available appointment is - you might just pick up another customer! Again, people just want some answers. 

Bottom Line: It is always best to search your “dealership service” to see what comes up! Looking at the results from a customers perspective. Making sure that your content is relevant. 
When is the last time you searched your service center? Do you offer the ability to schedule a service appointment on your blog? 

Sherri Riggs

Derrick, when it comes to a blog, how often would you recommend adding new info or creating new content? 

Derrick Woolfson

@Sherri, it depends to be honest. I offer that because the content on the blog should be authentic, and not just the OEM auto publish blog posts. That said, I would aim to at least have 4-5 posts a month on the blog. Focusing on the local area and/or sales events. It is easier said than done, though! It is hard to be consistent with it, which is why many dealers just opt for the OEM content to be auto-published. 

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