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Traffic 2012: The Year You Advertise Like Crazy!!

So, we’ll sell 14million units this year, give or take.  That’s the size of our sales pie in 2012.

Understand that, no matter your PPC or SEO or anything, NOTHING you do is going to change the size of that sales pie, nationally or even in your market.  You have no control over that.  However, what all of your advertising, digital or classic, will do is alter the size of the PIECE of the TRAFFIC pie you get.  Because advertising generates traffic.  Which you can convert to sales, and that will get you more of the sales pie. 

So, what’s my point?  Traffic is more important than processes this year.  You need to focus on gaining in your processes, yes—but what I mean is do NOT wait your traffic efforts for the “perfect” processes.

I liken it to my sawmill example:  A gleaming, sharp blade at a sawmill in a field empty of cut trees is nothing.  A rusty blade that I can sharpen as I go in a sawmill with acres of cut trees is EVERYTHING.

In our world, the processes (sawblade) only grow the sales what you convert from the traffic you get.  If your advertising generates 400 visitors (traffic) and you improve your processes to get from 15% to 20% sales conversion ratio, good for you!  You went from 60 sold to 80.

Now double the traffic  but don’t move the processes.  You would go from 15% of 400, which is 60, to 15% of 800, which is 120.  More trees for the sawmill!  And I’ll fix the blade with the money I make from the sawing.  Which will increase to 20%, or 160 units, and THEN I'm really cooking!  Only I needed the traffic first, not perfect processes.

Starting to get my drift?  My good friend Scott Falcone of World Hyundai said it succinctly:  “We don’t set the size of the market, we just steal with our advertising what market we can from our neighbors.”

And what steals the most “trees” to your lot from your competitors?  Renders best chance at your biggest piece of the 2012 sales pie?  It’s not your processes.

It’s your TRAFFIC.

Traffic 2012:  The Year You Advertise Like Crazy!!

by Keith Shetterly,
Copyright 2012 All Rights Reserved 

Views: 114


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Comment by Brian Pasch on April 11, 2012 at 3:28pm

Keith, you will like the data study that I;m working on to present this Fall. 

Comment by Keith Shetterly on April 11, 2012 at 2:52pm

Thanks Thomas!  

Brian, it's like this:  A direct mailer can yield bad results with bad processes to handle the calls and the traffic.  If we focus on getting folks IN the store, to do what we DO best, then the processes have the lease failure points (no email or phone).  I know it sounds crazy, but I'm on the page that most folks don't call from advertising now, they just check next your online inventory.  I did a three month study of a dealer's calls, and 7% of the overall calls to the dealership of the TOTAL were initial sales calls.  The rest were calls from ongoing customers, service, dealer trades, personal, etc.

Changed my thinking to have what AutoTrader, of all people, has been saying for a long time:  People see the car pics and price, just like they do for an item at WalMart, and they don't call. They just come in.

Don't get me wrong, I want all the calls I can get.  I just need to understand that advertising drives traffic of ALL forms, and I need more TRAFFIC to make more SALES.

Comment by Thomas A. Kelly on April 11, 2012 at 1:52pm

Got your drift!....and I am with you all the way....Great message to all of us.

Thanks Keith.

Comment by Brian Pasch on April 11, 2012 at 1:42pm
I love your articles and traffic is very important indeed. It's not from any one source but a combination of many sources. We've been experimenting with old and new traffic sources. You are right that internal processes may not be perfect but dealers can work on traffic and process in tandem.

It reminds me of dealers who do not put chat on their websites for fear that they can't handle the leads. I ask them if they close their showroom in the afternoons as well to catch- up.

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