Automotive Digital Marketing

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The Digital Lot™ is our real lot now:  Ninety percent of our customers shop online these days, and of those only twenty-two percent drop a lead or call us before visiting.  Essentially, this means that nearly eighty percent of all our floor sales traffic comes in already having rapport with us and faith in our inventory--and all that was established by their online shopping experience.  An experience on our websites, but also an experience on our merchandising sites.  And a chat.  A lead.  A video.  Our reputation.  Everywhere online that they find us and find out about us and our products.
In other words, on our digital lot!  Our online efforts present us and our products, and then our shoppers consider them AND us online, and by far they then just come on in to the dealership.
To get that floor sales traffic to come in to our dealerships, however, we have to be chosen, really selected from all the dealerships the shoppers look at online ahead of their physical visit to purchase:  And so we must be clear and compelling online, from our merchandising, to our pricing, to our service drive, to our reputation.  We don’t make more car sales for the country--we make more car sales for our dealerships.  We fight for the size of our piece of the car sales pie.  Always.
And, in shopping that pie, today’s customers visit an average of only 1.3 dealership lots before buying.  That’s down from over 4 just six years ago.  What the “1.3” effect means is that, to a mathematical certainty, the fight with other dealers over bebacks is over.  If they come back to us, it’s because they have considered us online, and we matched their expectations on the first visit, and the customer then WANTS to come back to you.  And so the sale is, more than ever in automotive history, ours to lose.  And too often we lose it online by generating a "No" from the shopper without even knowing they considered us!  In fact, our online presence can too often be worse for sales than our worst floor salesperson.  Than our worst green pea, in fact.  Ever.

So, how do make sure we convert our online traffic to sales floor traffic?  And how do we convert the 22% that DO contact us with an Internet lead?  And how do we use things like mobile, reputation, social media, and chat in that conversion--and, more importantly, new and powerful things like the up-and-coming Sales-Driving Gorilla, Big Data?  And what about the very critical dealership processes to convert this dealership traffic to sales on the sales floor?  That's yet another "how" of the many mentioned here.
And The Digital Lot™ is all that "how". I've been learning, helping dealers, and writing about this situation for many years now, and, to dealers and to my peers in automotive retail, this is my compilation--dedicated to you!--of all  that I have learned and know about successfully running …

Coming in print and eBook in November 2012.  Watch for info, and sign up to get it by eMailing me at or fill in the Contact Form Here to reserve your copy.

Keith Shetterly
Houston, Texas
October, 2012
Copyright 2012
All Rights Reserved

Views: 629

Tags: car buying, digital lot, keith, shetterly


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Comment by Keith Shetterly on October 25, 2012 at 3:59am

Yes, Terry, it's the whole enchilada, as they say.  Thanks!

Comment by Terry Lancaster on October 24, 2012 at 9:21pm

Spot on, Keith.  It's not about your website or your Facebook page, it's your entire online presence.   Put me down for an Autographed eBook!

Comment by Keith Shetterly on October 24, 2012 at 8:32pm

Thanks Aaron!  Don't forget, folks, to email me at to reserve your copy.

Comment by aaron kominsky on October 24, 2012 at 8:31pm

This book Keith looks awesome I can't wait to read it! 

Comment by Doug Davis on October 24, 2012 at 8:02pm

Andrew I do also.  I find that the preaching works best when you have a cattle prod.

Comment by Keith Shetterly on October 24, 2012 at 7:59pm

Right on, Andrew!  I write what we live.

Comment by Andrew Ferree on October 24, 2012 at 7:52pm
Keith, this is good stuff. I preach parts of this every single day.
Comment by Keith Shetterly on October 24, 2012 at 7:13pm

And please tweet and pass this around, folks.  I hope for the chance to get this book to everyone who might be interested in it.  Thank you!!

Comment by Keith Shetterly on October 24, 2012 at 7:00pm

Thanks Doug and Jim!  :)

Comment by Doug Davis on October 24, 2012 at 6:24pm

Keith, looks like you have been busy.  I'm looking forward to seeing this.  I know it will be excellent.

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