By Jeremy Brown
“It’s important to think about producing something excellent first. If you have an outstanding product, world class content, or something else that sets you apart, then you can step back and start thinking about how to promote it.” – Matt Cutts of Google
• How do you stand out?
You sell cars, but so does the guy down the street. You have a website and so does he. So why would a customer go to your store instead of his? Why does a coffee drinker go to Starbucks instead of Dunkin’ Donuts? What you offer and the way you offer it is and will always be the most important part of what sets you apart from your competitors. What doesn’t set you apart is that you offer the latest Buick Regal or that you have a special lease offer on a Kia Sedona that anyone can provide. So what do you do and does your website say that?
• Who’s your audience?
While you need to know what makes you desirable to your customers, who are your customers? The way you talk about yourself should be catered to those who will listen. We’re all familiar with customer demographics, so does your website’s content take that into consideration? You can’t answer “is this good for my visitors” if you don’t know who they are. Don’t make assumptions, though. Just because you cater to an older crowd doesn’t mean they don’t use the internet.
• Be proud of your site’s content!
Some business owners or internet managers understand that text is important for search engines, but believe that their visitors don’t read it. This leads some dealers to hide their text with small scroll boxes or colored text that looks very similar to the background color. It turns out, your visitors not only read the text, but they use the text to understand more about you! They view your website not as a collection of colorful buttons, but as readable text that has buttons. Therefore, if you feel uncomfortable with your content then get it changed so that you are comfortable. You should be proud of that website, because that website represents you! Work with your SEO specialist specifically to improve the message that’s being put out on the internet on your behalf.
• Just because you don’t rank for a term, doesn’t mean that term is necessary
Lastly, while you should be proud of your content, don’t expect your site to dominate in rankings for any term you can think of. Just like you have demographic customers, so too do search terms. Based on the research and analysis we conduct on the thousands of websites we optimize in Cobalt, we have seen search terms like [Chevrolet] represent visitors who are researching rather than purchasing. If they do get to your site, they’re not likely to submit a lead or visit your store. Those searchers are high funnel visitor. However, a visitor who searched for [Chevrolet dealer in Arlington, VA], for example, is more likely interested in what makes you worth visiting your store in person – a highly qualified and low funnel visitor.