Doing paid search for some dealerships may seem like you are throwing money into a cash register and never actually buying anything. The best way to avoid this is to walk before you run and work closely with your vendor to set a clear objective.
Paid search can be very effective and can be used:
Before you approach paid search define what you want it to accomplish and establish what you are willing to pay to reach that goal. A couple of examples of goals may be:
Once you define your objective and your campaign you need to establish your keywords. There are many tools out there to do this but the most common one is probably Google Keyword Planner. The more refined your keyword list is the better audience you will attain and that will result in better results regarding leads and other website stats, like bounce rate.
Too many dealers out there let vendors write their ads with no input from themselves. This will not get you all the way to where you want to be. Generic ads like “Get a Great Deal on A New Grand Cherokee” or “#1 Jeep Dealer in Nebraska” just isn’t strong enough. It is okay, but you can do better.
Think about it like you would if you were putting together a display ad or a newspaper ad. Try an ad with offers. “Grand Cherokee leases starting at $299/mo” or “Over 400 Grand Cherokees starting at $29,999.” These types of ads will make you stand out from the competition, if your offers are competitive.
The work doesn’t end there. The more targeted the page is that visitors click through to the better. It also provides a better quality score with Google. So if I was wanting to run ads for Grand Cherokees, I would have visitors click to a page with the offer reiterated on the landing page and a selection of Grand Cherokees to choose from. This makes the conversion to a lead go up dramatically. Sure it is a bit of work, but very worthwhile.
Once you establish your campaigns and begin to see the results you will then be able to refine keywords and ads. This is the most important part. Many dealers just set and forget. Analyze the keywords and the ads that are associated with them. Analyze the bounce rates, time on site (TOS), and leads they produce. When you refine the keywords and the ads you will then be able to work on making your efforts very efficient.
There is so much more to set up and analyze with paid search but this should give you a great start.