Recently, while teaching a class at Northwood University, a student of mine asked me this question in regards to automotive service on a dealership’s website he was reviewing.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“Well”, he said, “the service page on their website has all the services listed on one page. But yet they have a page for each vehicle. Why not have pages for each service?”
I could not agree more.
As I have written previously, service accounts for 55% of the dealerships bottom line but gets only 5-10% of the marketing budget. I would also say service receives a similar amount of attention from leadership. Yet with some appreciation shown by the marketing team, this department could generate even more high margin business.
The days of a dealership just surviving doing work that falls under the vehicle’s manufacturers warranty are no more. Dealerships need to attack this revenue stream with the same energy as taking market share from others in terms of new vehicle sales. The opportunities are there to be taken.
So what can dealers simply do to help themselves right away with marketing their automotive services?
Let me share what I told my students.
First I had them look at the Google My Business pages of the dealerships they used as projects for the class. I had them log into the page to see what categories were listed for the store.
I chose one student as an example and he showed the class the page for the dealership he was using. It was a Chevy dealership in Michigan. What we found upon inspection that only one category was filled out. Car Dealer.
Not Chevy dealer. Not Used Car Dealer and also nothing in regards to automotive service.
I continued to ask the student: Do they do oil changes? Yes. Brakes? Yes. Glass repair? Yes. Auto repair? Yes
And the list went on. We eventually settled on 10 categories that this dealership should have had and then I had the student change them. We will keep an eye out on how this helps their page show up in search for these services.
Secondly, we went to the website to see if they had individual pages for each of the automotive services they did.
They only had one separate page for oil changes. Their next initiative would be to contact their website provider or agency and ask them create a page for each automotive service they provide describing what they do specifically and why someone should come to their store for this service.
We reviewed the content of the oil change page and found that it only contained a form to schedule service. There was no real content for Google or the search engines to read. This again would be a discussion asking the website provider to create relevant content as to why someone should come to get their oil changed at this dealership versus going to an independent service store.
Next another student asked what type of content could go on this page. Great question. I asked him what he thought would be reasons why someone would not consider servicing their car at the dealership.
- Too much money.
- Not quick enough.
- Try to sell me another service.
Wonderful responses. My feeling is that creating content that answers these concerns would be a great place to begin.
Better yet, having separate videos for the pages explaining each service would be optimal but first things first.
Lastly we focused on making sure the title of each automotive service page aligns with the description of the page and also the content. Too often service pages are not given the same attention as the home page or vehicle pages which impacts search results.
So as I told my students, if automotive service is important to your dealership, you need to treat each with the same respect as your highline products or cars. If not, don’t complain that the independent shops are stealing your business.
If my students are diving in to fix some of these issues on their class projects for their grades, what is holding you back from helping your dealership increase revenue? Great Question.