Sometimes even asking the question sounds strange. Is less, more? I guess that would depend on what we are talking about. If we look football the more touchdowns you have is better, but in golf the less strokes you have the better you played. When it comes to working with a company to build a website for your car dealership then I would have to say that Less is More.
I have been researching my competition for almost a year now. I look at the products they offer on their website, and I look at the end result of what they develop. Some impress me and some make me wonder what they were doing. For the companies that impress me I looked at what they offered for products and services and then I did the same for the ones that did not impress me. Here is what I found.
As I look over a car dealers website there are a few things that I want to look at first.
- Does the website have Relevant Content relating to the auto industry or the dealership?
Relevant Content is what the search engines need to find you online. If you don’t have relevant content then you just have a billboard of a site and the only people that see it are the ones who know about it or you direct there yourself.
- Does the website have a Bio or About Us page and is it up to date?
The Bio or About Us page lets the customer know about the dealership before they get there. If the developer pushed to have accurate information and not some generic BS then they care.
- How many pages does the website have?
The number of pages on the site directly relates to the site’s SEO. Did the developer take the time to create relevant pages for the client?
- Are the pictures from a 3rd party or did the dealership take them?
So companies offer to come out and take pictures of your vehicles once a week and load them to your site. Dealerships that are one man shows like this service. Most of the time companies that offer this service have under performing SEO and the site does not rank well at all with search engines.
- How many pictures of each vehicle are there?
Some companies will charge more monthly based on the number of pictures you have per vehicles. It is crazy to see but I have see prices jump from 35 a month for 3 pics per vehicle to 55 a month for 7 pics per vehicle.
- Does the site have a Blog or are they active on Social Media?
The Social Media integration will create more inbound links to the site and the blog will start to increase the size of the website and give it more relevant content.
- Does the site have firm Call to Action buttons on every page?
The Call to Action buttons request the customer’s info or lets them ask the dealer for more info. This is the endgame of the website. Get the customer to want to give the dealer their information. I look for the size, color and quantity of the call to action buttons. I am looking to see if the developer just knows about SEO or does he/she understand the whole package? Do they understand how to get the customer to stay engaged on the website? Do the call to action buttons draw the customers attention or do they blend into the background? A good developer knows not just websites but the car business.
Why do I look at all of this? This information will let me know if the person or company that developed the site was just building a site or if they wanted to help the client by taking every step the could to build them not just a website but help them develop a web presence.
As you read about what I look at in a website you might have picked up on a few things. The companies that develop websites that impress me focus on building quality sites and customer needs. They have only a few key products that they offer. For the larger companies, the website development side is completely different from the site that, say makes the Dealer Management System.They do that because they understand the importance of focusing on the client. Now with this comes a big price tag, anywhere from $300 to $600 a month.
I feel that the companies that offer other products and services are doing it because they do not create quality and effective websites. In order to get clients they have to offer other “packages” so the customer wants to say with them. The problem is that the dealership doesn’t know that much about websites and what is right and wrong online. That is part of the reason I enjoy writing this blog. I want car dealers to know that sometimes more is just more and free just doesn’t work.
If you want to do better online, look for less to get more.
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