CDK's purchase of Auto/Mate may create a major disruption in the dealer management system (DMS) industry. Here is our take. DOWNLOAD
Upon first glance, you might believe that there is a mistake in the title. There isn't. There should not be an apostrophe before the "s" in the word "competitors" because I'm not asking if people are seeing your Google+ posts or your competitor's Google+ posts. I'm asking if they're seeing your Google+ posts or actual listings for your competitors themselves when people search for your dealership by name.
Here's a tail of two dealers. It's not about the dealerships themselves. It's about categories. There are dealers who are taking Google+ seriously and there are those who are not. I could go into great detail about the many reasons that you should take it seriously, but here's a quick little bit of information that you may find interesting.
Look at the image above. In the bottom right corner right above the fold in the search results, you'll see that they have their most recent Google+ post, a gorgeous Mustang. The post itself is irrelevant, actually. It's just the fact that it's taking up that spot.
Now, take a look at the image below, in particular the same bottom right area where the Google+ post should be if they were taking their verified Google+ presence seriously:
In a search for this dealership by name, Google is giving people options above the fold to explore other dealerships. It's present on a search for Amaral Auto Sales as well, but the sheer presence of an active Google+ page is enough to push their competitors below the fold on the search results.
It's not earth-shattering information, nor is it likely to affect business very much. It might never cause the dealership in the 2nd example to lose sale. Then again, it might. Would you risk losing a sale for not taking part in a network that is free, that requires very little time to maintain, that helps you brand your dealership better and improve your website's search engine rankings?
I shouldn't even have to ask the question.