Blogs function as the voice of the company; a source that provides informative, engaging content, as well as an outlet for news and happenings in and around the area your company serves.
And while blogging has proven its ability produce some serious results, for many automotive dealerships, managing a blog and actively publishing quality content can seem like a daunting task.
To help, we've complied these 4 tips to help you with starting and maintaining an active, traffic-generating blog for your auto dealership.
Engage Readers with Relevant Content
This should be the easiest part to your blog content strategy. For starters, look at the questions submitted to the contact forms of your site - specifically, look to see if there's a pattern. Are customers asking about the same services or are they asking similar questions regarding the vehicles in your inventory?
Maybe your customers are asking questions about the differences between the Honda Accord and the Honda Civic. Or, maybe they are asking service related questions, like when they should rotate their tires, or what signs to look for when the oil and oil filter need changing.
No matter what they’re asking or contacting you about, utilize these contact form submissions for blog content ideas. Actively listening to your prospects and customers will ensure that you're not only providing car shoppers’ with information they're interested in, but also aiding prospective buyers in the decision making process and positioning your dealership as a trusted source.
However, if you're website isn't generating enough useful contact form submissions, start with the big 'how to' questions of a new car buyer. Answering questions or explaining how to do something auto related, serves as great content for your auto blog.
Here are some examples of some relevant 'how to' topics:
- Should I buy or Lease
- How to Setup Navigation
- How Accidence Avoidance works
- What Is & Is Not Covered Under Warranty
- Where to Get Oil Changed in (town)
- How to Connect your Smartphone to Bluetooth.
These are simple explanations that will aid any new car buyer or potential car shopper in setting up and identifying what they want in their purchase. Many car shoppers may not know what the benefit of accidence avoidance is or they may be leery to how it works. But after explaining it, you may have more customers requesting it in their next vehicle purchase.
Market Your Services By Helping Your Customer
Many drivers (myself included), are unsure when their vehicle needs specific services performed. We don't know how to tell if our tires need to be rotated or changed, or when the transmission fluid needs to be flushed.
Consider the common issues or problems a typical driver experiences while owning a car. Transform these issues into blog topics and write helpful posts that explain and offer your readers a solution they're most likely already searching for.
For example, if you compose a blog about how to tell when a when a vehicle's oil needs changing, provide the educational content and lay out the benefits of having this service preformed at your dealership. Does your dealership offer pick-up and drop-off service? Do you provide free coffee and treats in a comfortable waiting room? Do you offer a price match guarantee? Make sure you list these things out as they will help market the services your dealership has available.
Within your blog post, there's also an opportunity to link to other relevant pages within your website - such as a landing page where the visitor can schedule their oil change. The keyword here, is relevant - don't just populate your blog with links or promotional content... always keep the reader's objective in mind.
Tell a Story with Reviews & Comparisons
Is the new version of the Toyota Avalon or Ford F-150 coming out next month? If so, begin by writing vehicle reviews. For SEO purposes, and to appeal to specific readers, consider creating multiple posts for a blog series: a full overview, an interior review, an exterior review, an amenities, options and technology review, and a vehicle a comparison report.
When writing vehicle comparisons, compare the 2013 and 2014 models of the vehicle, the vehicles biggest competitors (example: Honda vs. Toyota), or compare the difference in model class (example: Toyota Avalon XLE vs. Toyota Avalon Limited).
When posting this content, be sure to link to the same vehicle inventory pages to increase the likelihood of ranking for those vehicle terms.
Guide your Readers with Calls-to-Action
All of your blog posts should contain a relevant call-to-action graphic to grab the readers attention and lead them to the next step. For example, if you're explaining how to check tires to see if they need rotating or changing, offer a coupon for a free consultation or a discount on tire rotation to get customers in the door.
Lastly, one of the most critical tasks when creating a blog is to first outline a blog schedule that outlines a predetermined topic, keywords, the author, as well as the posting date. Make sure you post to the blog at least once a week, as you'll quickly loose new and returning visitors if you go weeks or months without posting new content.
Looking for more ways to get your auto dealership found by prospective buyers? Check out this free SEO eBook and learn the actionable tips and strategies to getting ranked in search engines and getting found by your potential customers (before your competitors!).
All the best,
James Forrest is an SEO Consultant at Stream Companies, a Philadelphia area advertising agency.