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Moe Bakhtiari

Moe Bakhtiari Marketing Director

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6 Dealership Website Fails (And How to Avoid Them)

Ideally, your dealership website is like a 24/7 sales representative—constantly educating buyers, sharing your value proposition, and nurturing them through the sales funnel.

More specifically, a good used car dealership website is easily discovered by search engine users, and gives them the information they need to take the next step: Calling you to set an appointment.

But not every dealership website meets this high standard. If yours isn’t accomplishing what it should, it could be for any number of reasons.

Here are six of the most common dealership website fails—any one of which could be the root of your site’s poor performance.

It’s Too Slow

These days, consumers just don’t have the time or the patience to wait around for your website to load. If it takes more than two or three seconds for your site to load completely, you’re almost certainly losing traffic. Make sure your site loads quickly, across all device types and Internet browsers.

You Don’t Have a CTA

A good dealership website should spur action. It should push your visitors to pick up the phone and call you. That requires a clear and concise call to action. In fact, we’d recommend having a CTA on every single page.

Your Site Lacks NAP Info

When we talk about NAP, we’re talking about your dealership’s name, address, and phone number. This contact information should appear on every page of the site. For one thing, it’s an important local SEO factor. For another, it makes it easy for visitors to connect with you.

The Content’s Too Flimsy

A good dealership website will educate and inform; it will help the buyer to feel more confident in making that appointment with you. Some good, detailed information about your inventory and your F&I products helps. A dealership blog can also be valuable.

You Don’t Offer Any Trust Signifiers

Along the same lines, a good  dealership website should make it easier for buyers to trust you. That’s something you can accomplish by offering social proof, in the form of reviews or testimonials. Information about warranties, guaranties, awards, or professional affiliations can also be good.

There’s No Keyword Optimization

Finally, a good dealership website should be optimized for the search algorithms—and one way to make that happen is by ensuring you have keywords placed in all the right places. You don’t have to stuff them into every sentence; just make sure you have a keyword in your meta description, keywords in your titles and headings, and perhaps a few keywords in the body of your website content.

A good dealership website should help boost your visibility and increase conversions. If yours doesn’t do that, maybe it’s time for a tune-up. 

Happy Selling Driving Sales fam! 


Chris K.

Seems like a primer for those just getting started in our business, but I hope that helps someone. For me,  I know for a fact the top 2 conversions on all car dealer websites are CALLS and DIRECTIONS. In fact, the best place to get calls and directions are right from Google. For free. It's the #1 launch pad for automotive search. We get on average 500 phone calls a month, with over 50% of that penetration coming directly from within Google Maps.

So if you want to rock your local market, make sure you have the Google My Business app, which also includes Google Posts. I'm always telling local businesses about the Google my Business app too, as I love helping people succeed. I helped my local Pizzaria get on maps, and dominate, by posting specials, and since no other pizza place is doing that, they get seen bigtime on maps, more eyeballs because Google likes to make Google Posts stand out. So don't forget about Google Maps.

CTA is ultra important, but too many call-to-actions on a website will leave your customers helpless, confused and result in LESS leads than a car dealer website with less than (2) CTA's on any SRP or VDP. There are still so many car dealers getting this wrong and losing opportunities because some web company told you the more CTA's you have, the more chances they have to click. Nope, that's just very bad advice, from website companies that have never tested the idea. That last part is a fact, and we went from 30% to almost 70% of all sales coming from the internet simply by easing the burden on the customers to select a CTA option from 15 to 2. Despite being challenged by many about the reduction of CTAs, I continue to prove those website providers, visionaries, and gurus wrong on every account.

Build your own deal software is junk and results in fewer leads and fewer sales. I found out the hard way. It's also expensive. Basically, your leads stop coming in! I'm serious. Stick to the proven concepts and don't buy the hype. All those guys who are promoting this software are doing it trying to get rich, but it's an injustice to your business model, and insulting to car dealerships everywhere. Consumers at your dealership never ever told you they wanted to build the deal online - have they? Right! Just what I thought.

And Google now searches by relevancy, as keywords actually serve no purpose anymore for a webpages metadata, like it did a few years ago. Those days are dead. A properly structured VDP is loaded with SEO.

And dealer websites don't have to do it all.

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