Category

Wednesday Workshop

Get the Most Out of Your Homepage (Part 2)

Get the Most Out of Your Homepage


Transcript

Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

If you want your business to thrive, you need your website to be its best. Today, we’re going to go over a few tips on how to use certain design elements effectively and ensure that your site is gathering leads and looking great at the same time.

Let’s start with banners. How many should you use and what kind?

With banners, there’s a tendency to overdo it. We recommend no more than three to five. Too many banners run the risk of overwhelming your visitors and reducing the chance of them interacting with any one offer. If you do use a lot of banners, make sure that the most important are first.

When using banners, you don’t always have the choice of where to put them. Some OEMs require any banners to be placed above the fold.

DealerOn’s standard banner sizes are 880 by 320 pixels and 1920 by 600 pixels. These are the most common sizes for OEM banners. If you aren’t sure which to use for your site reach out to your vendor to confirm the size before posting the banner.

Headers come with a variety of design challenges. How many nav links should appear?

In terms of usability and memory, seven is the magic number of nav links in a header. More than seven links can easily overwhelm your visitors.

When adding additional links to your header, be mindful at what the scaling-down process will do. The best headers are clean and unobtrusive with only the most vital information present.

What information should go in your header?

All the basics. Your OEM logo, if it’s not already part of your dealership’s logo, your dealership’s name and/or logo, phone numbers, and nav links. Other links to consider would be a link to Google Translate for your non-English speaking clientele, social media links, links to service schedule, a map, and contact info.

What’s a homepage block?

A homepage block is a container for content. It can contain any number of things, including but not limited to, a widget such as a search bar or model bar, a form, text, images, or carousels. Homepages can have up to 10, one of which is customarily reserved for the inventory search widget or search valet.

How many blocks should you have on a page?

The more blocks you add to a page, the less likely a visitor will interact with any single one of them, and too many runs the risk of completely overwhelming customers. For a streamlined design with good interactivity, we recommend between five and seven distinct sections of content.

Pages with seven or fewer blocks have consistently higher rates of interactivity and conversion.

That’s all for today’s workshop. As always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for watching. We’ll see you next week for another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

Get the Most Out of Your Homepage (Part 1)

Get the Most Out of Your Homepage (pt1)

Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

When it comes to the design of your homepage you want to put the very best foot forward. The “intro widget” is what your visitors will see at the top of their browser window when your site loads and will therefore be the first impression you make. DealerOn’s innovative and effective designs include four basic options, and today, we’re going to go over the pros and cons of each so you can make the decision that’s right for your dealership.

Option one, the split hero.

The split hero is an image that goes across the top of your site, that is split between two options. For example an inventory search function and your service department.

This option allows you to equally emphasize the two most profitable parts of your business, as well as making your navigation convenient for your two largest customer bases. Your hero image can have many different links to lead-generation pages. And it does this without sacrificing a clean and attractive design.

Option two, full video.

A video is exactly what it sounds like. Drone footage of your inventory can be an attractive and eye-catching option. You can convey a lot about your dealership in a short video.

For best results, use a short video, without text, that primarily showcases well-lit exterior locations.

Option three, the grid.

The grid is something of a compromise among a bunch of effective options. You will be able to have multiple search options and navigation bars immediately obvious to your visitors.

Option four, the banner search.

This option is the most straightforward. You put your offers front and center as the very first thing your visitors will see.

The intro widget is a vital part of your site. When you’re picking one, think about the impression you want to make, and from there, we can personalize it into something that reflects the unique qualities of your store.

That’s all the time we have for today’s workshop. As always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for watching. We’ll see you next week for another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

What is Display Advertising?

What is Display Advertising

Transcript:

Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

Display advertising has been around almost as long as the concept of making money on the internet. Initially taking the form of banner ads, display advertising has undergone advances as technology has improved and websites have found new ways to monetize content. This week, we’re talking about display ads and answering any questions you might have on how to get the most effective ones for your dealership.

Most display ads you see online will be either Facebook or Google ads. They will be targeted to you by harvesting information from your browsing history and featuring related products – this is generally referred to as a re-marketing ad. Others will use that same browsing history or likes to determine if you match a certain audience – if you do you’ll be served up relevant ads.

Because the ads are tailored specifically to the individual’s browsing history, likes, or engagement, they’re more likely to get in front of a user who wants the product or service in question.

For a significant number of users, your display ad will be the first impression they have of your dealership, so make it a good one. The design should be dynamic, with clear branding, and the offers presented should be relevant to the consumer. Your goal is to get a user to click through that ad and wind up on a place where they can submit a lead.

Avoid overly complicated designs and use as little text as possible. You want something simple that can catch the eye, and obvious enough that the customer knows what they’re getting into. Simple and clean are the watchwords of an effective display ad.

When you talk with a consultant about designing your display ads, give them plenty of examples of ads you like. Before committing to an approach, think about who your customers are and how best to address their specific needs.

Simplicity and familiar branding is best. Plentiful negative space is perceived as calming and welcoming, two things that are in high demand these days. Again, keeping your ad as simple and clear as possible will increase the likelihood that a customer will click on it.

With so many different advertising options at your disposal it’s easy to overlook display advertising. It requires focused attention to design best practices, which a lot of other ad formats don’t need to take into consideration. That said display ads can be really useful for re-engaging lost traffic or just plain old engaging with new customers who fit your target audience.

That’s all the time we have for today’s workshop. As always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for watching. We’ll see you next week for another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

4 Ways to Get Customer Testimonials

4 ways to get testimonials


Learn how to get more reviews for your store with these four easy tips! Customer testimonials can be a great way to advertise your store! This week, we go over four ways you can start gathering them.

Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

Customer reviews can be some of the most effective advertising your brand can get. Of course, there’s one big problem with them: unlike your other advertising, you have very little control over your customer reviews. When you get them, who leaves them, and what they say. But today we’re going to go over a few ways you can exercise what control you do have.

One: Check what you already have.

Your dealership should have multiple social media accounts on a variety of platforms. Google, FB, Yelp, and others are all vital parts of a modern social media presence, and potential sources for testimonials.

Go through each one of them and look at what reviews have already been left. The Recommendations and Reviews part of every page should have at least a few positive notes. So, feel free to encourage your followers to leave a review.

Two: Contact your customers immediately.

You’re always more likely to get a review, positive or negative, in the immediate aftermath of a sale. After a customer takes home their dream car, contact them for a follow-up. Ask for honest feedback about their experience. It very well might turn into a great testimonial. However, it also might not, which leads us to…

Three: Always get better.

Soliciting reviews won’t always net you the response you want, but a bad review can become a good one if you’re open to feedback. If a customer had a negative experience at your store, find out why, and if you can, make it right.

Your customer will feel heard and valued, and you have the chance to turn an unsatisfied customer into a loyal patron. After that, a good testimonial becomes a lot more likely.

Four: Google Alerts keep your eyes on the conversation.

It’s possible that you’re getting testimonials right now that you know nothing about. Having Google Alerts set up for your dealership helps ensure that when a customer does say something nice about your business in a public forum, you won’t miss out.

Google Alerts are designed to be easy to set up. And once they are, you will have a free service that updates every day, combing the internet for whatever terms you put in.

That’s all the time we have for today’s workshop. As always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for watching. We’ll see you next week for another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.

Client or Server Side? How Your Website Should Render

Client or Server Side

Client or Server Side? How Your Website Should Render

Transcript:

Welcome back to another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn. Every industry has a series of questions that are almost guaranteed to provoke arguments among professionals. Web design is no different. At risk of provoking one of those arguments, we’re going to weigh in on one of the central debates of web design: what’s better, client side or server side rendering?

As with any of these debates, the answer is “Depends.” In this case, it depends on what kind of site you’re running and who is designing and hosting it. Since you’re watching this, you probably have a site for your car dealership and in that case, the answer is clear.

You want server side rendering, which is what we provide for DealerOn websites.

The difference between server side and client side rendering boils down to who is loading your website when you get a visitor. A server side render means that we are loading the site on our end and delivering it in completed form to your visitors. This has several key benefits to their experience as well as SEO.

It delivers dynamic information as static HTML.

When search engines look over your site’s code, they are often unable to recognize dynamic content, seeing it instead as placeholder names that would be populated by specifics on a customer-facing page. For example, your sites might have “Make” and “Model” as placeholders in the design code, expecting customers to put the make and model of their choice, and allowing the site to populate the page with specifics. If the site is client side rendered, then the search engine will see this code and therefore might miss your site in a specific search. If the render is on the server side, the entire site will be loaded before the search engine categorizes it. Your SEO gets a boost and your customers get the experience they want.

The render is faster.

Because we’re doing the render on our side, the site loads faster. As you know, load times are a big part of SEO and user experience. As long as the company doing the render has invested in the equipment to do it well, and DealerOn has, the server side render is better.

It reduces or eliminates speed related budget issues.

In a client-side render, Google has to load the site in two phases. Practically, this means that the load takes extra time. Once loaded, there’s a chance that your dynamic elements will be missing, and Google might miss pages entirely. A server side render saves you this trouble.

As you might have guessed, at DealerOn, all of our sites are rendered on the server side. We’ve invested in our infrastructure so that your load times will be fast, and our dynamic programming means that your customers will always find exactly what they want.

That’s all the time we have for today’s workshop. As always, if you have any questions or comments, leave them below and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Thanks for watching. We’ll see you next week for another Wednesday Workshop from DealerOn.