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Jeremy Patterson

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Necessary VDP Elements

A big first step toward revamping a dealership website for better lead generation often involves cleaning up the VDPs (Vehicle Display Pages). A good strategy is to strip off anything unnecessary and/or distracting, leaving only what the customer needs to get information, build trust and move down the purchase funnel. Below are some VDP elements that can help enhance the customer experience without giving them an opportunity to bail.

The first pieces of a VDP are great photos that show off the vehicle's features. This is the most basic of VDP elements. Having actual photos of the vehicle described in the VDP, rather than a stock photo, is always highly preferred. In addition, the VDP should accurately describe everything about the vehicle including MPG, any extras or features, and any other technical specifications a customer might want to know. Showing alternate similar vehicles at slightly varying price points can keep a customer on your site if they like what they see on the VDP, but want a couple of options.

In order to build trust on a VDP, some dealerships use logos or list awards that the dealership or vehicle has won. These are good ideas, however most customers are more easily swayed by word of mouth, which in this case could be reviews. Thus, vehicle and dealership reviews together are very effective VDP elements that help reassure a shopper that both their target vehicle and the dealership are trustworthy and approved by others.

The final VDP elements need to be prominent conversion items that easily pull the customer through the sales funnel. These should include a form submission option, live chat and a trackable phone number. The conversion buttons, numbers and widgets should be placed in very prominent spots on the VDP to make the next steps toward purchase clear.

There are other items that can enhance a VDP, but the basics listed above can form a good base for testing and lead capture. How are you all arranging your VDP's for maximum business opportunity?

Dave Rozek
I am revamping our VDP's. The Car Business has gone Crazy with sending the customer to the VDP. 5 years ago we all said send the customer to the VDP. Back then the bounce rate was about 25 to 30%, today the bounce rates are like 65 to 85%. Why is that and where did we fail? Simple answer, shoppers still want to shop! Did we ever think that not everyone wants just the car we are directing them to and that the customer wants to shop around and figure out what they really want or can afford for those 10 to 15 hours they are spending on-line. We serve up these awesome display ads getting the customer to look at a Cadillac when they really have a Chevy budget. They look at the Hyundai Sonata, get all the info and leave. Then they Google an Elantra and if you are not serving up a good PPC ad or re-targeting them they are gone to view the next dealers products.I agree 110% that we need to all revamp our VDP's, and/or design custom pages that offer the right options to drive customers to create behavioral actions and than re-target them. It is not enough simply to drive a customer to one product, because not everyone knows what they want.

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