Optimizing Your Dealership Web Site for Mobility

When you visualize digital marketing, you may be picturing customers sitting at home on their desktop computers. The picture needs to change, however: research by Google has found that more than 70 percent of vehicle shoppers’ activities take place on a mobile device.

In other words, you don’t have a big screen in which to display your digital marketing efforts. You have one that’s a few inches square, and it’s going to require rethinking your digital marketing strategy. The good news is that mobile devices help shoppers receive the information they want in the format they like best, with the communication media they use the most built right in.

Building a mobile marketing experience from the ground up (“mobile first”) begins with ensuring your is optimally displayed in a mobile format. It should be designed to load easily, display in a small space and be based on conversational keywords that will turn up in a voice search. If your web site has been correctly mobile optimized, you’ll have a clear path to other channels, as well, such as SMS (text) marketing and customer support.

Ensuring Your Web Site is Mobile Friendly

Today, Google’s algorithm ranks sites lower if they’re not optimized for mobile, so it’s critical that you follow the guidelines for mobile web design. The original full-featured desktop experience is too complex for a mobile device. If users are having to pinch and zoom around the screen to find information, it’s not properly optimized.

Some tips for better optimizing your web site for mobility include:

Testing your site with Google’s mobile-friendly tool. This tool will help you design the best way to display your site in a mobile environment.

Use a responsive WordPress theme. Web design tools like WordPress can help you ensure your site is going to load quickly on a mobile device.

Be sure you have a reliable Web host. This can make all the difference in speed to load.

Remove the clutter. While you may think it’s artistic, unnecessary design elements don’t translate well to the mobile display. Remove or redesign any pop-up elements.

Create a mobile app. If a customer is truly engaged with your dealership, they will take the time to download your mobile app, allowing you to communicate more easily with them and even personalize the experience.

Stop using unoptimized images. Images are often what cause slow responsiveness, so be sure any you use are optimized for mobile.

Measure Your Efforts

As with any marketing efforts, be sure you have a way to measure your performance metrics. (As the old saying goes, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.”) Metrics that can help you keep a handle on quality include:

Basic responsiveness. This is a measurement of how quickly your website changes to fit a mobile device. Nobody likes to wait for a page to load on a phone, particularly when it’s so easy to navigate to a competitor’s site. Google’s PageSpeed Insights can help with this.

Call-to-action. A mobile web site should have a call-to-action high up on the page. If your response rate is low, it’s possible your CTA is in the wrong place. Consider reducing the size of your copy, including images that are less vertical and making the call-to-action more visible.

Click-through rate (CTR). CTR should be measured on Google both from desktop and mobile devices to see how the two compare. Google Search Console can give you some idea of how you are performing when your page shows up in mobile search results.