Lauren McLean

Editor’s Note: The following blog is authored by Lauren McLean, public relations manager for Dealer Spike, a company that provides websites as well as a suite of online advertising solutions designed to help dealers increase sales and service profitability.

As we close out 2017 and move closer to 2018, it’s clear that the majority of digital consumption is shifting toward mobile devices. We know that mobile use of the Internet is only trending upward as well, according to research collected by resources like comScore.

Have you ever noticed what a search engine results page looks like on a smartphone screen? On a desktop screen, the paid advertisements typically appear in the top 2-3 spots, but several organic search results are also visible below. On a smartphone screen, there is usually only enough space to show the top two search results at most without having to scroll down – we call these “top of the fold” results. This means that SEM ads are taking up 50-100% of top-of-fold screen space for smartphone users. Is your dealership showing up in that spot? If you haven’t signed up for SEM services yet, then the answer is no.

If you think potential customers in your local area aren’t  going to search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing before your dealership website – think again. Research from the Local Search Association found that 80% of Internet users prefer search engines as their first choice (digital or non-digital) to find information about local businesses. Those search engine marketing (SEM) ads drive value for your dealership – and if you’re not implementing SEM strategy, you could be losing more potential sales with time. Search engines certainly aren’t going anywhere fast, and Internet search via mobile is only becoming more popular as smartphone technologies improve. Missing the boat on SEM ad opportunities for your business could be detrimental to your bottom line.

With best practices applied, SEM ads are highly efficient, because they drive the most qualified traffic to your website, resulting in more conversions to sales. The best search engine marketers for RV dealerships create highly relevant ads for Internet users who search keywords related to the industry. Local consumers who are in the market for a new RV are likely typing in search queries like, “2017 Coachmen RV in excellent condition, reclining driver and passenger seats, and back-up camera in Austin TX.” Paid ads for your Austin-based dealership that include some of these keywords will appear at the very top of the search results page for these consumers who are ready to buy.

When these ads appear above organic search results, and especially above your competing local dealership’s search result or ad, you increase your dealership’s chance of earning those impressions, clicks, and potential sales.

Research from HubSpot found that one third of users will click on the top Google search result. On a mobile screen, your chances are already limited due to the smaller amount of space to work with. Don’t limit yourself even further by relying on organic search results alone.