Online and Mobile Consumers: How to Get Your Dealership Marketing on Board

Mobile devices are rapidly changing the way that consumers research, shop and make purchases. According to the J.D. Power 2015 New Autoshopper Study, 51% of respondents said they used a smartphone or tablet to help find the make, model, price, and dealership that best suited their needs.

And once a consumer arrives at the dealership, they continue to use their mobile devices for additional research. Did you know that consumers using a mobile device are 72% more likely to visit another dealership than those who were without a smartphone or tablet while car shopping? And 33% of customers went to another dealership based on a mobile ad they saw while shopping for a car. (Source: Placed, Inc. and

In 2015, the auto sector spent $3.43 billion on mobile ads in the U.S., representing 47% of the industry’s total digital ad spending, according to eMarketer. Beyond ads, consumers interact with mobile in other ways on a daily basis. For example, dealerships who say they are not investing in mobile and prefer to stick to a channel such as email, the reality is that 45% of these emails are opened on mobile.

Mobile usage by consumers is skyrocketing and automotive marketers must respond in like with mobile messaging. Here are some ways your dealership can get on board with mobile.

1. Fast-Loading Websites are a Must

The design of your website should be mobile-responsive, but be sure to also pay attention to the loading time of your pages. According to Gartner, 43% of customers are unlikely to return to a mobile site that loads slowly and 74% of mobile site visitors wait up to 5 seconds, but 60% wait less than 3 seconds and never return.

2. Optimize Mobile Landing Pages

The goal of landing pages is to get a quick conversion. Many dealerships spend a large portion of their budgets creating great ads. Once a consumer clicks on an offer, coupon, or ad, the landing page must be designed to convert mobile users. While a landing page viewed on desktop can include more text and visuals, a mobile landing page will need to follow different design protocols.

Some great tips to follow according to research by AutoHook include:

  • Keep headlines very short, no more than four or five words
  •  Is the text large enough? Zooming should not be necessary
  •  Make sure everything is visible on one screen so the user doesn’t have to scroll down
  •  Call to action (CTA) must be the first thing the user sees
  •  CTA goal is to get the user to perform one action, typically to click a link or a button
  •  One objective per landing page
  •  User should know exactly what they get when they perform the CTA

3. 80% of Consumers Redeem Mobile Coupons

Eighty percent of shoppers say their perception of a retailer improves when the retailer offers mobile deals and coupons, according to Mobile Commerce Daily. In 2016, an estimated 104+ million consumers will redeem mobile coupons, reports Statistica.

In addition to emailing coupon offers, other channels for promoting mobile coupons include Facebook, Twitter, and mobile texting campaigns. Several dealerships are also using Mobile wallets to promote coupons. 70% of consumers will save an offer to a mobile wallet when presented with the option. These offers have a 64% higher conversion rate over static mobile web coupons. (Source: Vibes)

With Apple Wallet and Android Pay mobile wallets, a customer can click on a mobile offer such as a coupon or ad, and store it. Once the offer is inside the mobile wallet, a dealer can easily update the digital passcode and can send customers push notifications offering them new coupons or specials.

4. Add Personalization to Your Mobile Email Messages

Personalized emails improve click-through rate by an average of 14% and conversions by 10% (Aberdeen). When sending email campaigns (mobile-optimized messages of course), use personalization as a key tactic to increase engagement and encourage more visits to your dealership.

According to a report by the Relevancy Group, when consumers were asked about what they disliked most about receiving email messages on their phones, 39% responded that the emails were not relevant. (And keeping in line with the importance of being mobile optimized, 32% stated that the email was too small to read and interact with and 26% stated that, “when I click through it’s too hard to see their full website on my mobile phone).

dealership email marketing mobile

If you don’t have the data you need to send personalized email offers, consider using a third-party data source to append your prospect records. Common types of data that can be added for personalization include:

  • Demographics: age, occupation, gender, hobbies, purchase behavior, and lifestyle interests.
  • VIN Data: Make, model and year of the car currently being driven, Kelley Blue Book and Black Book data, or even very specific data including engine size, fuel type, drive train, engine block, and engine cylinders.

In nearly every industry, shoppers have come to expect a fully interactive mobile experience that offers easy access to the product information on any device. This means mobile-first design and mobile-optimized experiences for dealerships who want to maintain and enhance their competitive advantage.

Download our Automotive Marketing Success Kit for more great tips and strategies on how to target and acquire today’s car shoppers.

Automotive Marketing Success Kit

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