Dealership Marketing Blog

Relevant articles about how to market your car or RV dealership online

September
28
September
28
On the strength of solid demand despite rising interest rates, North American new vehicle prices reached a record high of $45,844 through the summer of 2022, meeting the industry’s forecast from earlier in the year. Coming hot off the heels of chip shortages, supply chain woes, and a global pa...
September
21
September
21
We spend a lot of time thinking about how our individual choices impact our communities, and many of us have made the switch to reusable water bottles, paper straws, cloth grocery bags, and the like. But larger businesses also shoulder a lot of responsibility when it comes to environmental stewardsh...
September
13
September
13
Electric vehicles (EVs) have been around in the market for a while but have only recently gained popularity. This is due to technological advances that have made them more practical in terms of transportation and cost, not to mention added pressure to work towards more sustainable transportation sol...
September
12
September
12
Out of all of the content we’ve seen so far at ASOTUCON 2022, this panel was one of my favourites. Fleming Ford’s panel with Gregg Ciocca Sr., Scott Simons, and Dawn Williamson was one that I believe would benefit all dealerships. The key takeaway? Treat Your People Like Family After ...
September
08
September
08
Leads, leads, leads! We hear it daily: “hey, FlexDealer - we need more leads.” And trust us - we can get ‘em for you! But what happens after those leads come in? How many of them are you shirking off as “bad leads?” What quantifies a “bad lead?” Is there suc...
August
30
August
30
High employee turnover rates in dealership companies is a problem for many business owners. It can be tough to keep moving the needle forward when you are frequently putting resources into hiring, onboarding, and training, only to have those employees leave before making it to their one-year anniver...
August
29
August
29
A professionally managed SEO campaign is essential for any dealer website. SEO provides the highest return on investment of any marketing option and can make a drastic difference for both new and used car dealerships. How, you ask? Essentially, SEO can help you to target your website's content ...
August
25
August
25
In Q1 of 2022, FlexDealer became a Trusted Partner in the Google Vehicle Ads (formerly Google Vehicle Listing Ads) alpha program. This was an exciting step for our team, our clients, and a bridge that has connected us to many other wonderful partners. 9 months later, things have changed and we'r...
August
24
August
24
Batteries are a crucial component of many electronic devices because they provide power to the device. Without a battery, most devices would not be able to function. However, batteries aren't exclusive to smaller electronic gadgets any longer, and a perfect example of this is the creation of ele...
August
22
August
22
Working from home is becoming increasingly popular as technology allows us to connect more from anywhere, anytime, around the globe. It was once pretty challenging to imagine having auto industry employees working anywhere besides at the dealership, but the past few years have created new ways of do...
August
09
August
09
Though digital retail continues to take off in the world of automotive, the majority of customers still want to visit your dealership and work with a real person before pulling the trigger on that new car. In fact, we shared a 2-part blog post about this exact topic when it comes to car sales in the...
August
04
August
04
Making decisions about vehicle inventory is one of the toughest parts of managing a dealership, particularly in our rapidly changing world. How can you maximize profits on your used cars? How can you leverage your data to make informed choices about ordering new vehicles? How can you acquire qual...
August
02
August
02
An auto dealership is an establishment that needs effective leadership to succeed - and if you’re reading this blog post, then you likely already know this to be true. A business person needs to be familiar with not only the many aspects of a dealership, but also how to successfully lead the p...
July
20
July
20
Over the last 15 years building FlexDealer, I’m proud of the work we’ve accomplished in seeing ahead of the curve and influencing the direction of the market. For example, we were one of the first automotive website companies to include a robust and reliable inventory management system i...
July
19
July
19
Ranking your local business on the search results of Google can be hard. It becomes even more challenging when the industry you are in is over saturated. How do you make your business stand out from the hundreds of thousands of other businesses in your area? This is a problem that many car dealersh...
July
19
July
19
FlexDealer team members Sarah and Whit joined hundreds of dealers and vendors at 2022 Canada's Used Car Week in Toronto. Whit kicked off day one by leading an insightful workshop for dealers about how to maximize your Google My Business profile to attract more eyes and clicks, and both Sarah and...
July
06
July
06
No matter what question a person has in mind, their go-to place to look for the answers will surely be the internet. Whether it's about your health, proving yourself right during an argument (not saying we’ve ever done this…), or about buying a new car, you’ll find the answers...
June
20
June
20
As a car dealership, we understand that your bottom line is ultimately to sell more cars. And although there is much more that goes into selling vehicles than just your digital strategy, you at least want to see that new potential customers are viewing your website inventory or getting in contact wi...
June
15
June
15
Technology has had a significant influence on the automotive industry, as it has on any other industry today. Various procedures in all areas of dealership administration have been greatly enhanced for the benefit of both the client and the dealer as a result of some ground-breaking technology innov...
June
14
June
14
With the number of automotive dealerships today, there’s no doubt that competition is steep. If you’re one of them, there’s no better way to thrive than to stand out in this digital age. Without further ado, read on to discover these common digital marketing mistakes to avoid for y...
June
06
June
06
Content marketing is the process of developing and distributing helpful content to a specific audience to increase brand loyalty and sales. The search visibility of your car dealership website will improve considerably due to excellent content, resulting in more visits and leads. Why is Content Ma...
May
31
May
31
We’ve all been there. The honeymoon phase is over. You had expectations for the kind of results you’d get from your website provider, whether you set them yourself or they were set by the person who sold you the website. Maybe it’s happened before and you’re thinking, “...
May
30
May
30
For years, word-of-mouth has been a go-to method for individuals looking for tips when buying certain products; but in our digital era, more and more people are relying on online searches. This is especially true when it comes to buying cars, where the majority of shoppers now head online to look fo...
May
27
May
27
Many businesses are relying on the capabilities of online marketing methods to ensure that they gain traction over time, given that more and more people may see what their venture is all about. Car dealerships are also getting in on the act, marketing their branches until they gain more leads. Now,...
May
24
May
24
There are so many marketing strategies you can explore if you want to bring your car dealership to the next level, from regular social media engagement, to paid ads on Facebook and Google, to in-store events, and beyond. But most adults prefer email as a mode of communication, so email marketing can...
May
18
May
18
These days, an online presence seems necessary for a business' success. The internet is an excellent medium to market products and services, since you have the opportunity to amplify your reach in today’s digital age. It's no different for car dealerships. Online Presence and Content ...
May
09
May
09
Nowadays, many businesses utilize the Internet to reach a broader audience. There are many ways of doing this, but one of the more well-known methods is content marketing. Content marketing is creating valuable and relevant content for your audience to consume. This content can then be distributed ...
May
06
May
06
If you run a car dealership, it’s pretty important to have a website and local listings that can rank high in search engine result pages (SERPs). After all, your digital presence is the number one way that potential customers find businesses they want to interact with these days. But your...
May
03
May
03
Your website is a more effective tool than ever in today's marketing landscape. Your website, like a 24-hour salesperson, can be your most valuable asset and the focus of your marketing efforts. It's no secret that if you want to be a successful business, you must deliver an incredible expe...
April
29
April
29
  Now more than ever, dealerships are looking for new and unique ways to generate more profit: not just more car sales. This requires getting creative with how you’re connecting with your community.  I firmly believe that creating a lasting impression of humanity and authenticity ...
April
27
April
27
Today, many businesses rely on social media for various reasons, but none are more compelling than increased reach. However, you won't achieve your desired reach without running ads. While most social media platforms allow marketers to run ads, Facebook is perhaps the leading platform for social...
April
22
April
22
Does your online business invest in content marketing? Given all the content people scroll through daily, it may be hard to get your brand noticed even if you manage to make it to your audience’s feed.  Content marketing is a collaboration between traditional marketing and technology. Th...
April
17
April
17
It’s no secret that there are some big issues with inventory right now. From supply chain to allotment, new vehicle dealers are experiencing shortages like never before. So what’s the best way to keep selling new vehicles that don’t yet exist? Factory orders!  Let's look ...
April
13
April
13
In recent years, more and more marketers are taking up digital marketing as their primary revenue-generating channel because it's more efficient and yields better results than traditional marketing like radio and newspaper.  However, digital marketing is not a marketing arm that you can us...
April
10
April
10
One of the easiest ways to get inventory in front of buyers is to leverage it with an eye-catching special. This is something I can’t argue with. We’ve had clients jump over to Flex tech from other website providers for this one single feature - something that we thought was pretty simpl...
April
04
April
04
The OEMs sure do, and rightfully so. Does that mean that your dealership should?  Let’s find out if model landing pages make sense for individual dealerships. What is a Model Landing Page? A model landing page, or MLP, is a page on your website that tells your visitors all they need to...
March
28
March
28
With many dealers struggling with allocation on new units and finding used inventory regardless of trades and other acquisition methods, it’s an interesting time to be a marketer. In this post, I’m going to share where we believe dealers should put their marketing dollars depending on th...
March
27
March
27
If your marketing campaigns are not producing the desired results, it is a solid sign that your digital marketing strategy is failing. The reality is that until you know which metrics to analyze and how to track them, you will have no idea how effective your marketing is. Before you invest too much...
March
17
March
17
Are businesses still blogging these days? You better believe it! In fact, many business owners plan to add blogs to their content marketing strategies for the first time ever in 2022. Blogs are a way to present information, educate, and connect with your audience. They can also be a way to help boos...
March
15
March
15
FlexDealer CEO, Michael Cirillo was a featured guest on the popular Facebook show, “Live With Lopes,” hosted by industry veteran Frank J. Lopes.  During the program, Frank inquired as to what the main buzzwords of the exhibition might be, to which Michael shared his honest impressi...
March
14
March
14
Do vendors and solution providers own your data tracking tools?  Does their reporting have the info you care about?  Is their reporting clear and easy to understand? Does the info align with the performance you’re seeing in-dealership? If these questions spark concern or make you...
March
08
March
08
There’s a lot of talk about Web 3.0 and the metaverse in the car business, but what does that really mean for your dealership in 2022 and beyond?  Google lists content as one of its top three ranking factors, which means that dealers who create and share more content are going to have a ...
February
21
February
21
Similar to my recent post about a 75-year-old family member purchasing a new SUV, this post highlights the buyer’s journey of a less-decided 77-year-old family member, her joys, complaints, and thought processes around buying a new vehicle in the age of digital retailing. The purpose of this ...
February
15
February
15
Moving into 2022, one of the expectations I have as a marketer is that we’ll see dealers experience a turn of the tides back to creating in-person dealership experiences that go above and beyond. Your digital efforts are still incredibly important, but what happens when you get on the phone wi...
February
09
February
09
Like any great automotive marketer, I pelt everyone I know with 101 questions about their purchase experience when I see they have a new vehicle. Recently, two of my aunts purchased new SUVs. They’re 75 and 77 respectively, and in this two-part post I am going to share their experiences and my...
January
31
January
31
If there is one thing we’ve witnessed over the past two years in retail automotive, it’s that car dealers can adapt and pivot faster than they thought. The narrative over the last 10 years has largely been a warning cry from analysts in the industry that, in the near future, car dealers ...
January
24
January
24
Sometimes it can be tough to stand up to the OEMs. But franchise dealerships are facing more restrictions than ever from the manufacturer and are looking for new ways to connect with their customers, including via paid ads. Demand for used cars has exploded as inventory issues plague the new-car ma...
January
19
January
19
As a trusted partner in the Google VLA program, we’re committed to ensuring that our clients are in-the-know when it comes to their VLAs. Here are the questions that we encounter most often when it comes to signing up for Vehicle Listing Ads.   VLA Question #1: What is a Good Budget for ...
January
11
January
11
I bet you’ve been hearing about Google VLAs - and it’s for good reason! Google VLAs are a new spin on the world’s most-used search engine and marketplace. Better yet, it’s not over saturated, giving you the best opportunity possible to take advantage. Let’s dig in. &nb...
January
06
January
06
The unique thing about the automotive industry is that it seems to change faster than most industries, despite being so often stuck in the past. Here’s what I believe we have in store, en masse, for 2022 in the automotive industry.    1. Brand Will Matter More Than Ever Before ...
January
04
January
04
Independent dealers are facing the fact that a strong online presence and digital marketing efforts are essential if you want to grow your business in 2022 and beyond. As walk-ins and street traffic dwindle, it’s vital to start thinking about your homepage as your storefront, your Instagram gr...
December
30
December
30
The last day of the business year is one that often feels like it’s in limbo and it's as if there’s no clear path on what to do or what matters most. That’s okay: I have your back! Here are some easy ways to positively impact your business on this oddly slow yet relevant day. ...
December
08
December
08
Welcome to FlexDealer’s December Office Hours recap! Each month, we host a virtual fireside chat where we discuss important topics that impact both our clients and the automotive industry as a whole. Our goal is for each call to inspire our client partners with relevant information that can he...
October
26
October
26
Are you using targeted email campaigns as a part of your marketing efforts? If the answer is ‘no,’ then this blog post is for you. Targeted emails continue to be one of the most effective marketing channels available to any business owner. A recent study by McKinsey & Company found ...
October
25
October
25
Welcome to FlexDealer’s October Office Hours recap! Each month, we host a virtual fireside chat where we discuss important topics that impact both our clients and the automotive industry as a whole. Our goal is for each call to inspire our client partners with relevant information that can hel...
September
27
September
27
Welcome to FlexDealer’s September Office Hours recap! Each month, we host a virtual fireside chat where we discuss important topics that impact both our clients and the automotive industry as a whole. Our goal is for each call to inspire our clients with relevant information that can help make...
September
16
September
16
If you’re worried about how the recent loss of Facebook Marketplace Automation affects your business, you’re not alone. Previously, Marketplace Automation would allow your inventory feed to automatically populate vehicle listings on Facebook. With the new changes in place, you’ll n...
August
27
August
27
Welcome to FlexDealer’s August Office Hours recap! Each month, we host a virtual fireside chat where we discuss important topics that impact both our clients and the automotive industry as a whole. Our goal is for each call to inspire our clients with thoughtful and relevant discourse that can...
August
18
August
18
In a recent episode of The Dealer Playbook podcast, I had the pleasure of interviewing Alex Flores, a 26-year veteran of the automotive industry. Alex is the owner of Bravo Chevrolet Cadillac, Bravo Cadillac and Used Car Depot, Seguin Chevrolet, and the CEO at AF Dealer Consulting.  Alex has b...
August
10
August
10
Welcome to FlexDealer’s July Office Hours recap! Each month, we host a virtual fireside chat where the Flex team, our clients, and an esteemed guest speaker dive into topics that directly impact the automotive industry. From leveraging social media to attract more customers to new car-selling ...
July
13
July
13
I was recently on Facebook and saw a question asked by a dealer in one of the automotive groups. Jeff, a marketing director for a Toyota store, asked: “Hey all! Quick question and I thought maybe other people might be in the same boat...  so we are currently losing sales in our own PM...
June
29
June
29
If there’s one thing that’s going to help you sell more cars, bicycles, trumpets, or widgets, it’s going to be your USP. Let’s start by getting clear on what a USP is: in short, a USP is your unique selling proposition. It’s something that your brand does differently ...
June
18
June
18
Welcome to FlexDealer’s June Office Hours recap! In previous months, we’ve been joined by Head of Automotive at Facebook, Bob Lanham, and CMO at Roadster, Michelle Denogean. This month’s featured guest speaker is Ali Reda, a master sales consultant at Les Stanford Chevrolet Cadilla...
June
07
June
07
This year marks the seventh anniversary of The Dealer Playbook, a podcast that explores what it takes to create a thriving career within the retail automotive industry. Hosted by FlexDealer CEO, Michael Cirillo, each weekly episode features interviews with subject-matter experts from both ...
May
21
May
21
Welcome to FlexDealer’s May Office Hours recap! Each month, we’re inviting our clients to meet with our team and a featured guest speaker to take part in meaningful conversations about moving the car business forward. On this month’s call, we were joined by Bob Lanham, Head of Aut...
May
18
May
18
Last month, FlexDealer held our first official Office Hours! What exactly is ‘Office Hours,’ you ask? It’s simply a time when our team takes an hour out of the workday to make ourselves available for our clients - no appointment required! We generate a topic for each session t...
May
10
May
10
Here at FlexDealer, we aim to set the bar for a growth mindset. It’s important for us that our team is always learning, reflecting and sharing what we’ve learned with others. Not only is this how we foster growth within our team, but also how we grow together as a community. FlexDealer&...
December
28
December
28
Let me start off by saying that I generally dislike the descriptors “small” and “big”. Generally, they’re overused and not very creative. In this case, they’re the most accurate way to describe these examples. Let’s dig in!   Why Choose Us? When cl...
October
15
October
15
FlexDealer’s own Briar Latam was a keynote speaker at the fifth annual Women & Automotive Conference earlier this week, where she delivered an insightful talk about remote leadership, and strategies for promoting a successful work-from-home culture within your business. When Briar agreed ...
September
23
September
23
Shawn Armorer, The BDC Alchemist, has perfected a business development process that truly works and has made him well-known within our industry. During today’s event, Shawn, Michael and event guests discussed this new BDC model in our current reality, as well as how we can learn from CarVana a...
September
21
September
21
When it comes to optimizing your dealership’s Google my Business page, most dealers say: “What is that?” To which we reply, “A free and incredibly important tool available on Google - the box that you see to the right about your business (hopefully) when you search for it!&...
August
25
August
25
2020 brings a few widely-used words to mind: pivot and unprecedented. For those of us in the automotive space, the buzzword for the year has been digital retailing. In the first Kijiji Autos DealerTalk series event of 2020, FlexDealer’s CEO and host of The Dealer Playbook Podcast, Michael Ci...
June
02
June
02
When it comes to looking at ads, critiquing them, and nerding out about them: we love it. Our team is always sharing what we think of ads of all types, including national videos. Many are boring and don’t stand out from the crowd. Some are creative and engaging. Others are hilarious. The res...
April
10
April
10
Did you know that your ads are out-spending your hard-earned dollars on BOTS late at night? Yup... it's true. We originally published this blog back on October 30, 2017 but have found it to be an even more timely message today. Digital advertising, in many regards is what has helped many dea...
April
09
April
09
If you've ever wondered what you can do to enhance your search engine ranking, pay attention. There's something online called citations, and you want them.  Why? Citations are an online reference to your dealership name, business address, and phone number. Google uses them to evalua...
April
06
April
06
Many dealerships can't see the value in blogging. They find it difficult to see how something as simple as a blog can contribute to a sale. Of course, without the proper strategy, blogs might appear as measly old journal entries that you hope will draw an audience. But blogs CAN be much more ...
April
02
April
02
You CAN Innovate during a market contraction. That's the message that FlexDealer CEO, Michael Cirillo shared with Canadian Auto Dealer. Earlier this week, the popular retail automotive news magazine reached out to interview Michael to learn about what he is seeing in the industry today. Ther...
March
31
March
31
If there is one thing that we know, it's that the COVID-19 pandemic has leveled the playing field. There isn't a person or business that isn't or won't feel the impact of it in some way or another.  Luckily, we live in an era rich with abundance. Even when there are unknowns,...
March
30
March
30
Social distancing doesn't mean customer distancing. When faced with a challenge, people either buckle under the pressure or get creative. In particular, the new challenges related to COVID-19 have demonstrated who is truly genuine and authentic in their business and those who offer "custom...
March
26
March
26
Edmonton, AB - Michael Cirillo, bestselling author and host of the wildly popular podcast, The Dealer Playbook, has recently published a brand new eBook that aims to spark creativity and hope for retail dealerships during uncertain times. Michael shares his experience weathering the economic s...
March
19
March
19
We're living in a pretty crazy world right now. The spread of COVID-19 and the regulatory lock downs of many businesses have dealerships around the world worried. While many are closing their doors for the next two weeks, I would like to submit that there are ways to remain active and keep buil...
March
17
March
17
oday, while news here in Canada isn’t the brightest, times feel uncertain, and consumers are acting irrationally, we had two approaches to client marketing cross our desks: - A small, independent dealer upped his ad budget by 50%. - A large, franchise dealer in a smaller city suggeste...
July
04
July
04
We’re going to go out on a limb and guess that you, or someone in your dealership, might be the owner of a smartphone. With the cameras in smartphones getting better with every new release that passes, we have some tips and tricks to help you take advantage of the speed of tech advancement and...
July
03
July
03
Whether our clients are on our FlexDealer website tech or using another vendor’s tech to be present online, one of the most common questions that we’re asked is how to improve PageSpeed scores.  Google has noted that for every second of added load time, conversions can decline by...
June
28
June
28
While there’s no substitute for a talented and skilled graphic designer and robust desktop software, sometimes you need to push your content out to the world right now! With these tips and a few great smartphone apps, you’ll be up and running in no time. Why these image apps? Speed: ...
June
24
June
24
That’s right, I said it. In a time when we’re seeing more requests than ever for local SEO services and more worldwide experts chiming in about how important it is, OEMs are falling backwards.  OEMs at national and international levels are continuing to put dealers into corners b...
March
14
March
14
Google confirmed a recent “broad core update” to its search algorithm this week so big that it was predetermined that they call it Florida 2. While Google makes updates to its algorithm almost daily, my research indicates that this is larger than normal.  Any time Google makes up...
March
11
March
11
Operating a tech company is an interesting and fun game to play. On the one hand, it’s a delicate balancing act between deploying more resources to develop “shiny new objects”, while on the other it’s about strengthening the foundation of what brings proven success to dealers...
March
11
March
11
Is age just a number? Yes. Does that number provide a benchmark for accomplishments? Absolutely! Today, we’re thinking about just how much 40 incredible young people have accomplished in under only 40 years to help push the automotive industry forward! Michael Cirillo Selected as one of Auto ...
February
14
February
14
Recently, at NADA 2019 in San Francisco, our fearless CEO Michael Cirillo and the voice of The Dealer Playbook Podcast sat down with Bill Zadeits from the Auto Remarketing Podcast to chat about what’s to come at the approaching Auto Remarketing 2019 event. What’s the Event? Coming to T...
January
28
January
28
Being in the dealership website and digital marketing game can often be a battle like a teeter-totter; balancing doing what we know is best for our clients’ performance, and also doing the things that matter most to those clients and their dealerships. Can I get a “no more sliders&rdquo...
January
18
January
18
At this point in the game, you really should have your 2019 marketing plan in place. With that being said, we’ve been in the dealer world for a long time. We know that it doesn’t always work out so smoothly, and that’s alright! Whatever the reason, we’re here to help you make...
October
11
October
11
Now that you’re a decade or more into marketing your dealership online, I think we can agree on one thing: if you build it, your audience won’t necessarily come. I don’t blame you. In digital retailing today, there are so many options to choose from, and even more mandates. Consid...
March
25
March
25
What do you get when you put hundreds of automotive general managers, dealer principals, marketing managers, with some of the brightest industry experts, in a room for eight hours? The Trillium Automotive Dealership Association’s (TADA) Auto Dealers' Innovation Series, of course. The TADA...
March
21
March
21
"Content marketing is the equivalent of healthy diet and exercise..." Tired of eating salad? You’re not alone. A lot of people are simply bored with salad. All that lettuce isn’t cutting it anymore. So, it isn’t surprising that you’re not winning any friends with ...
March
16
March
16
Almost everywhere you go, it seems that HTTPS has followed you there. What is HTTPS, what does it do, and how do you install it?   What is HTTPS? That’s a good question! HTTPS stands for hypertext transfer protocol secure; this means that the connection between the user’s compute...
February
17
February
17
"Millennials are lazy. They don’t really want to work. They live at home, the age of 30 looming on the near horizon, freeloading off of mom and dad’s groceries and the lure of free rent. They don’t have the money for fancy dinners or lavish vacations, let alone enough to buy a...
February
14
February
14
When it comes to increasing your professional knowledge, nothing beats attending a conference. From inspiring keynotes, and informative workshops to networking and making new friends, there are plenty of automotive conferences, workshops and seminars to go around. In fact, there are so many that it...
February
10
February
10
If you’re a dealer principal or general manager of a dealership, I can pretty much guarantee that you have heard the following from a handful of people over the years, “Your website IS your dealership!” For the longest time, it seems, many dealership owners and staff were hesitant...
January
27
January
27
I wish I started blogging sooner. That's one regret that most online marketers share, myself included. Why? Blogging has a unique ability to grow and nurture an audience of interested consumers. Many thought leaders today have become well-known because of their blogs.  What I'm abou...