From the archives: Don’t forget to promote your website
As the Internet has boomed into something most people use nearly all day, every day, a store’s web presence has become increasingly important.
Though it’s great when customers find your dealership through a search engine, it’s even better when they remember your site enough to type it directly into the navigation bar.
Last January, ARI’s Bob McCann shared advice to dealers looking to grow their web presence by getting customers to better remember their website address. Because these tips are still relevant, Boating Industry has chosen to again share his words of advice.
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Bob McCann, Director of Education, ARI
Want to generate more leads and sales from your website? Use a simple yet highly effective best practice: Promote your Web address! The most common approach prospects use to find a dealership is still simply typing in the dealer’s URL. It is a key element of your corporate identity and the address of your 24/7 store, so make sure that your Web address is everywhere, consistently and frequently promoted on- and off-line.
The rule of thumb is that it should be present everywhere your address and/or phone number appear, including all marketing and advertising materials, stationery, business cards, customer communications, on your display at boat shows, on your after-hours voicemail message, etc. But don’t stop at the obvious – Take this effort a step further and think of more places, big and small, where it would make sense to include your Web address. For instance, is it in the email signature of every person on staff? Speaking of emails, make sure that all members of your team have the same, consistent signature in terms of format, font type, color and content. Web address anyone?
How about your store front? Have you taken a look at it lately, from a customer’s perspective, and thought about how it could help your dealership generate more traffic? For example, you could include your Web address on an entranceway sign that lists your hours of operation, along with the message, “Sorry we missed you. We are always open at DealerWebsite.com.” Did you notice how I deliberately chose to spell the URL? It’s known as CamelCase, CamelBack (and many other names): It makes your Web address easier to read and remember. And don’t worry, the link will work regardless of the case visitors use when typing in your URL.
The many ways you promote your Web presence enables you to consistently raise your dealership’s profile and drive more traffic to your site to increase leads, and ultimately, sales. This simple effort seems basic yet the importance of its impact on a dealership’s awareness is often overlooked. Take a few minutes to sit down and make a list of all the avenues you could use to publicize your Web address, compare it to your current visibility, and add your URL to places and materials you have yet to leverage.