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Building the future of auto sales


Mobile First: The Key to Successful Website Design

Dealerships are always looking for the newest and most effective ways to reach potential customers. Over the past several years, we’ve seen a drastic shift in advertising spend away from television and printed media and towards the internet. Now more than ever, marketers are using Twitter, Facebook and other online distribution tools to generate leads.

The tools available are many the ways to use them even more. It can be challenging to navigate an ever-evolving digital environment and it’s easy to get lost. One thing that many dealerships tend to ignore or forget about at best, is their mobile presence. In a day an age where people spend more time browsing the web on their mobile phones than on their desktops, its critical that dealers start thinking seriously about mobile optimization.

If you’re a dealer, your website is an extension of your showroom — it’s often your first impression with customers. You certainly wouldn’t tolerate a messy or disorganized showroom. Yet an astounding number of dealerships have websites that look cluttered and confusing — especially on a mobile device—while savvy ecommerce focused dealers that do have a good mobile website design are eating their lunch.

Online retailing for dealerships is here to stay, and it’s going mainstream rapidly. In a 2015 study by global consulting firm Capgemini, 75% of consumers said they would consider buying their next car completely online. While websites used to be limited to capturing lead information, they can now be optimized to move buyers partially or all the way down the funnel with online checkout tools that lets consumers order the vehicle they want without even stepping into a dealership. The majority of these customers are doing their car buying from their phone.

Do me a favor — pull out your phone and examine your website. Search for your best selling vehicle. Is it easy to find quickly? If not, that’s a read flag. If you have a lead capture tool or another online retailing tool, try filling it out. If the buttons are hard to use on your mobile phone you are almost certainly missing out on sales. Your customer will likely move on from your website and check out another dealership.

It may be tempting to ignore these seemingly abstract problems and instead focus on your day-to-day sales activities. But this would be a huge mistake. Online car shopping is only getting bigger. When we first launched Drive Motors two years ago, 2% of car shoppers were buying online. Today, that number has increased to over 9%. If the trend continues in the same pace, 43% of car shoppers will be buying online by 2019. Even a conservative assumption with half the growth rate puts the portion of car shoppers who place an order online at 21%.

In either case, you can’t afford to miss out on this rapidly growing segment of car shoppers. Any forward thinking dealer who wants to stay current with changes in consumer behavior needs have a working mobile website design.

Learn more about Mobile First and how you can improve your mobile design by downloading your free ebook here:

How to Sell More Cars with Mobile First

The Auto Dealer's 5 Step Guide to Making $ with Ecommerce (Part 2)
How to Evaluate Vendors at Your Next Trade Show

About Author

Rune Hauge
Rune Hauge

Rune Hauge is the Head of Growth at Drive Motors. He is experienced in ecommerce and digital media and is excited to share his expertise with dealerships to improve the car buying experience.