Automotive Digital Marketing

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Don't Worry About Bells and Whistles. Make Your Homepage Help You Sell Cars

Your homepage should fulfill two needs: get car shoppers where they need to be and give them easy access to contact you. 

Every visitor should be able to do this with little to no friction. But many dealers make the same mistake on their homepage, disrupting the car shopper's experience. They add widgets and chat and banners in an attempt to entice browsers to take an action. They are, however, actually making the homepage less effective.

That's a problem because you can gain significant insights about shopper behavior when you measure your click-through rate from your homepage to your purpose pages.

We've discovered that the biggest impediment to homepage-to-SRP CTR is the homepage banner -- because many dealers request far too many of them. Let's take a look at how they impact car shopper behavior from our study across hundreds of dealer sites ...

Why?

  1. Only 5.99% of visitors click a homepage banner
  2. Of that 5.99%, half click on the first banner
  3. Only 0.86% of that 5.99% get to the third banner

Our recommendation: Set a maximum of 3 homepage banners.

Here's a little more context:

Reunion's Homepage Banner Strategy with Chart

If you want more statistics and perspective about homepage banners, check out our homepage banners blog.

So, the moral is you want to avoid interuppting the car buyer experience. Why? Well ... 

Why Are Car Shoppers Visiting Your Dealer Site?

Car shoppers come to your site for one reason: buy a vehicle. That means you want to give them as few steps as possible to land on your SRPs.

As a matter of fact, every additional page that people navigate through, a greater percentage drops off and exits.

That's why your homepage should streamline browsers to your SRPs; hence, the importance of measuring your CTR.

When our study was originally written, as of March 3rd, 2018, our dealer network's average CTR was 47.18%.

We do want to issue a word of caution, however. Across the industry, dealerships' homepage-to-SRP click-through rate falls across a spectrum of percentages. You need to ask yourself, "Where do I fall on this scale?"

Chart Showing Click-Through Rates on Dealership's Homepage

If you're falling short of our 47.18% baseline or aren't sure of your metrics, you need to start a conversation with your internal marketer or agency partner. You could be losing shoppers are you read this. 

In case you needed some help understanding how to measure your CTR, we have an audit you can conduct .

Bonus Tip: SRP Optimization

You're here. That's great. Since you made it to the end, I want to give you something for that. This blog placed emphasis on the importance of getting shoppers to your SRPs, so it's vital that you know how to make your SRPs as effective as possible.

Example of SRP with MSRP, Value, and Other Important Details

For your SRPs, you want to:

  • Make it simple to get to a VDP
  • Set proper filters and prioritized by user behavior
  • Place mobile calls-to-action on every vehicle
  • Avoid an abundance of form submissions (2-3 is all you need)
  • Merchandise and market each vehicle through your site and channels
  • Compare your inventory counts to your local competitors
  • Look at and experience your own site across all devices

We’re here to help, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you have other questions, comments, or concerns.

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