Whether you’ve been to a conference, or just had a visit from your factory rep, you’ve probably heard Google thrown around a lot. There are many different components to how Google can benefit your dealership. Did you know there are 34 billion searches done on Google every month in the U.S.?
Chances are, you or your digital marketing agency are using Google to deliver Pay Per Click (PPC) ads, and you might be using the Google network to deliver display ads. There’s another component many dealerships overlook or take for granted. This “forgotten” feature is the Google My Business profile. Is your dealership listed? You might not even know! Many times, one person from the dealership is tasked with setting this up while other managers or employees might not even be aware it exists. Another common problem is that an employee was responsible for setting it up and managing it but is no longer with the company. This happens everywhere – not just automotive. This can lead to issues, however, and it’s very important for someone to keep track of logins so you’re never without the password for any dealership platform.
If your dealership isn’t set up on Google My Business, it’s time to get started! First, you’ll need to find your listing. If your dealership isn’t listed, or is listed but information is missing or incomplete, you might have to verify the business with Google. There are a few ways you can do this. The easy way is that you have the password for the Google account, and you can login and select one of two ways to verify the business. The first way is to have a code sent to the associated phone number. If you have the password, you probably know who set up the account or what phone number is attached to the account. That makes it a lot easier. It will tell you the phone number, so you’ll be ale to recognize it right away. If you select this option, a code will be sent which you can enter and begin verifying or editing information on your listing.
The second option is a little bit slower, but unfortunately, many dealerships have to use this process if they don’t have access to the account or don’t have access to the phone numbers associated. This option is by mail! Google will send a postcard to the address of the dealership with a verification code. Once the postcard is received you can put in the code to begin.
Once you’ve gone through this process, it’s a great time to start a password sheet. Add your Google login to this sheet and start tracking all logins so you won’t have any issues in the future. This seems like a very obvious tip, but as an automotive digital marketing agency, we see many dealerships that have simply been too busy to take this step. However, it will save you and your employees a lot of time in the end!
Keep It Up!
If someone else in the dealership has been tasked with setting up the Google account, make sure the track the login and share it with all appropriate employees.
If you’ve successfully verified your account and logged your password, you’ll want to assign someone to manage the account if it’s not going to be you. This is very important. You’ll want to make sure the phone numbers are always up to date, the hours are correct and noted for holiday changes, and you’ll want to upload new photos as new cars come in and the seasons change. It seems like something you set up and leave alone, but it’s not. Before you know it, the service phone number changed, or they’ve extended hours on Saturdays and your listing isn’t up to date. So, be sure to set a point person for your Google listing.
There are so many ways to leverage the power of Google for automotive digital advertising and reputation management. Check back for part two and three of this blog series to learn more about Google and your dealership!
If you need more help with Google, you can come watch my session at the Digital Dealer Conference in August in Las Vegas. We will be speaking on all the ways Google can help you! You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christine has spent the last 13 years strategizing, executing, and optimizing digital campaigns. She is certified in a variety of digital tactics including SEO, SEM, Social Media, Display Advertising, Email Marketing and Mobile Advertising and has been published several times on PRDaily.com. She has hosted digital trainings, been a guest lecturer for Graduate classes, and has spoken at the Digital Dealer conference. Outside of the office, Christine is a roller derby coach and also teaches Digital Marketing at William Paterson University.
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