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From: Jared Hamilton
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Jasen Rice

Jasen Rice Owner, Dealer Management

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If You are Not First in Mind, You Better Be First In Line

If you, your dealership or your vehicles, are not the first thing that comes to mind when a consumer is shopping for a car, service, parts....you better be the first thing that they see when they search, "if you are not first in mind you better be first in line". I could talk about SEM/SEO or VDP's right now but I want to cover SRP's, or search results pages because there is so much talk right now about VDP's but if you don't show up in a search, you can forget about the VDP. 

When consumers are searching for vehicles they are going to use multiple resources to shop for their cars and one major one is going to be the Internet. While researching online they will be visiting multiple sites and each site has a unique way to list, sort and search for particular vehicles. The problem is, you just don't know what website they end up on and what ways they might search for to finally stumble upon your vehicle. Some sites have the ability to select certain options or features to narrow their list of vehicles down, some others may allow the customer to type whatever they want to narrow down their search. Some sites have a drop down to choose price points and others may allow the customer to type in their price range. If your vehicle does not fit into their search parameters your vehicle will not get the SRP needed to drive up your VDPs. So how do you increase your SRPs to make sure that no matter how the customer searches, by make/model, price point and or options? I will give you a few pointers:

  1. Stop using manufacture terms or car talk terms for your options. What I mean by that is just because Lexus calls it a moonroof, the customer may be on a site looking for a sunroof and your car does not show up. More on that later...
  2. Start flat pricing your vehicles, especially if you have a car that not too many people are looking for. What I mean by that is to price your car at $15,000 instead of $14,995 especially if its a vehicle like a Mercury Mountaineer. There are more people shopping for a $15000 SUV then there are people shopping for a Mountaineer and so if the customer is shopping for a $15000-$18000 SUV you will miss that search if you are priced at $14995
  3. "Meta tag" your comments. What I mean by that is that you need to think of any way a customer my search for a vehicle, by options, on any particular site and put those terms into your descriptions. If you are going to use "7 passenger" in your comments you better include "3rd row seat" somewhere in your comments also. If you are going to use "GPS" in your comment you better included "navigation" also. If you are going to put "rear entertainment" in your descriptions you better include "DVD player" somewhere in your descriptions. You don't know if the customer is looking for a GPS but if your descriptions list it as a navigation or navi, you do not show up in that search on most sites, if they look for a DVD player and you have rear entertainment, guess what, your car won't show up.

 

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So in order to be one of the vehicles first in line on the SRP page, to get that valuable VDP, you better maximize your pricing and comment strategy to make sure your car is at the top of the list because you and your car probably were not the first thing that came to mind when they started searching.

Check out my webinar that goes over how to enhance both your pricing and comments to get a huge increase in SRP's at www.automotiverevolution.com 

Robert Karbaum
I can't count how many times I have heard comments about the "Moonroof": "What's a moonroof?" "Is that like a sunroof"?" "Oooh faaaancy, a moooonroof..." "Why don't they just call it a car hole?"
Grant Gooley
If your VDP is full of great content (Pictures, comments, videos) You will show up in SRP's... Semantic mark up will really help you! That's for another blog post all together :)
Jasen Rice
Grant, if we are talking about sites like autotrader and cars.com, pictures and comments do not guarantee you SRP's. I am sure you have seen plenty of cars show up on a listing page with no photos and no descriptions. Its when a customer narrows down their search with things like "photos only" or "sunroof"..that will get you the SRP, if you have photos and comments that fit how the consumer searches. With or without those things your car can show up, but to get a "good" qualified VDP is getting on the short list when they do narrow their searches down. Plus a customer that narrows their search down to specific features are further down the sales funnel than people shopping with broad searches
Jasen Rice
Robert, I know your feeling on moonroof..if you asked 10 different sales people what the difference between a sunroof and a moonroof, I think you will get 10 different answers
Lawrence Wittrock
Historically a moonroof cover is glass and a sunroof has a metal cover

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