Automotive Marketing Professional Community for Car Dealers, OEM and Suppliers
Website companies are rolling the dice and gambling with the hard work that drives organic traffic to dealership websites. Blogs are not moved, custom pages are erased, and structural tags are all gone.
There are two situations causing this alarm. The first is an upgrade to an existing client website. A new version of the website software wipes out all the page titles and META descriptions on old website pages, and sets the tags to some "default" text.
This is poor planning and sloppy implementation that can be avoided. However, what I am seeing is that the actions companies are taking make me believe that they no longer care about SEO. This is a disturbing trend.
The second case, is when a dealer changes website platforms, and none of the "common" pages have the tagging that the old website had in place. There are at least 20 common pages on all dealership website, which coincidentally are also the most used pages like "Used Car Inventory", "Specials","About Us", and "Hours and Directions".
In most cases that I have seen, all of the "Geo-Targeting" that was created on old website pages, is gone. It appears that vendors are not respecting the significant time and money that has been invested on organic optimization.
If you have noticed, I have not contributed many articles on Automotive SEO in the past year. Frankly, since everyone claims to be an Automotive SEO expert today, the marketplace was getting too noisy for me and so I moved on to other important topics.
So, I've taken my latest SEO techniques and strategies and applied them to our clients. Some clients have even commented that they like the fact that I'm not sharing as often, which of course is the double-edge sword that educators face all the time. How much should you share when your clients want to stay ahead of the competition?
My silence in no way should be construed as complacency about the need for SEO. The team of content writers, social media strategists, and SEO technicians at PCG Digital Marketing are making new inroads into organic search marketing strategy. The results in recent months have given me a reason to write about SEO once again.
With that said, I feel that my recent silence may be responsible, in some ways, to this trend of website companies ignoring SEO basics. I am seeing a big drop-off in organic positioning for non-branded keywords, after site cutovers.
When I look into the reasons, it is often this lack of planning during a website cutover. If your dealership has recently gone through a website upgrade or changed providers, you need to check your site carefully.
One of my team members got a frantic call from a former client that decided to go with a "cheaper" SEO solution. They were panicking that their organic traffic had dropped. After a few minutes of questioning, it was revealed that they recently went through a website upgrade and all customization was lost.
The dealer was furious that their provider's $______ a month service would not have informed them of this classic error. They came to the age old realization: You get what you pay for!
Today's SEO strategies are built on original content, social media engagement, and localized strategy. It takes real people to do the work each month, and not software algorithms that occasionally change keywords and page titles.
So, members of this community who are going through a website upgrade soon or who are about to change website platforms, make sure that their is an SEO contingency plan in place.
If you are looking for the latest SEO and Social Media strategies that are generating high quality organic traffic, I invite you to join me in Philadelphia, May 14-16th at the 4th Annual Automotive Boot Camp. I hope to see you and your team there to discuss SEO strategy.
Brian Pasch, CEO