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Micro Site Advice to Dealers Just Getting Started

I recently received this inquiry and my response is shown below it:

"I have gathered much information from your input. Thank you. I was wondering if I could ask you a couple of questions regarding your micro-sites.

do you/your team create and manage these yourself, or is a third party involved?

what would you advise to or not to do when getting started with these micro-sites?

I know you are a busy man, if you can't get back to me, but I would appreciate your input. Thanks!
"

Since I work for ADP, I use either of the 2 companies that ADP owns to generate micro sites. Either BZ Results or Dynamic Websites... Sometimes this is problematic as both organizations are a little negative on micro sites since they feel it takes something away from their primary full featured web site sales. The Dynamic (ADP) people seem to be a little more willing to work with dealers on micro sites. Dave Steinman at 619-895-6971 can give you a live online presentation on either type of micro site, and he is really good at helping dealership people get what they need.

Usually, I prefer to get a micro site tuned in and then let it ride without too much maintenance. As campaigns change and sales focus shifts, the idea is to launch new micro sites each month for the specific campaign. For example: http://chevyredtagevent.com/ and http://www.GM-Employee-Pricing.com are both campaign specific micro sites.... Then there is model specific, such as www.Chevy-Malibu.com and www.Chevy-Tahoe.com which both are only updated once a year.

My advice on micro sites is to create information rich, text and photo loaded micro sites for each of your most popular model lines first. Get unique URL's that are DNS hosted by the micro site supplier and make sure that the key words in the URL are the first 2 or 3 keywords in the micro site's index page title description (tag). Once they are up and running, submit their URL's to Google at www.google.com/addurl to make sure they get set up for indexing. After the model specific micro sites are done, then you'll want to start building campaign specific micro sites and attach a unique URL to each one, then use that catchy URL in the ad campaigns in all media. An example is "YouGOTgas.com" which was used in TV, radio and outdoor... It worked VERY well!

Try to avoid evaluating your micro sites on a cost per lead basis... They should be part of the overall marketing strategy of the dealership and should have links on them to many other web sites and various forms inside your main web site. Look at all the links at the bottom of www.PHXfinance.com and you will see what I mean.

Prepared and Posted by:
Ralph Paglia
rpaglia@gmail.com
cell: 1-505-301-6369
www.RalphRPaglia.com

Views: 49

Tags: ADP, BZ Results, advertising, advice, car dealers, landing page, micro site, micro-site, microsite

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Comment by Andy Shambarger on January 6, 2008 at 9:37am
A micro site example that Ralph left out for obvious employment reasons is one of my favorites. www.2008chevycamaro.com created for Ralph and Courtesy Chevrolet by Fresh Start Studio, LLC. Phenomenal site with everything a customer would want. Fresh start offered us a similar site for about $1400 including design, set up, gathering all pertinent info and photos. Another words you don't have to do a thing. Closer examination spells the big picture. For a car that isn't even available Ralph and his compatriots received enough contacts to keep several stores busy and as you can see with the level of advertising being displayed, the site is a money maker even if it never receives another lead.
After producing a couple of small sites I find Susan's comments to be right on target. You can't just make a sight with links to your home page. Statistics show a loss ratio of around 50% everytime a customer has to make another click to find what they want.
Comment by Ralph Paglia on January 5, 2008 at 9:32pm
Susan, my experience has been that your guidance is 100% on target!
Comment by Susan F. Heywood on January 5, 2008 at 4:00pm
My experience in using offer-specific landing pages has been that the more specific the information to the offer, the more effective the conversions. There is a ten-fold increase in sales from landing on a manufacturer showcase to landing on a product-specific page.

Customers who are dropped onto the main page of a dealer or manufacturer site because that's how the designers want to measure effectiveness ignores that the idea that the customer has already found a specific offer (like the YouGOTGas offer) attractive enough to type in a specific URL. (Hopefully because the advertising where the customers saw the URL was well-targeted and executed.)

Dumping customers into a situation where they are confronted with additional choices after they are already sold on a specific deal or vehicle can cut conversions by up to 90%.

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