Organizing Your Web Pages

Last month we learned how to build credibility with a polished, professional looking homepage.

You’ve probably realized by now that long gone are the days when you could rely on the Yellow Pages phonebook to bring in a lot of your business.  Many people I know never even looked at one.

So, over the next several months we’re going to start learning how to organize your website’s individual pages, by department. For this blog, I’ve created an easy plan for your major unit Inventory/Showroom section.  There are just a few things you need to accomplish; your customers will do the rest.  So, let’s get into the details…

KNOWING WHAT MATTERS

To understand how customers are finding your site (and what they are doing when they get there) I strongly suggest using an “analytics” program. Wouldn’t it be helpful to know how many customers are coming from your Facebook page, how many minutes people are browsing, which pages are the most popular, and other statistics?

If you’re wondering how to start, I suggest using the free Google Analytics program, or any other program designed to measure your website activity. You can set up Google Analytics through this link http://www.google.com/analytics/ ; or, ask your website provider if they already have a built-in website analytics program available for you– most will.

Whether or not you use analytics, did you know that the first through fourth highest ranked pages of your website are usually the HOTTEST AND MOST POPULAR UNITS YOU HAVE FOR SALE? That is right! In general, your homepage is actually going to rank a distant fifth or sixth.

What this all really means in the aspect of “searching online” is that most people are finding your site on Google and other search engines because they’re looking for vehicles for sale in your area. Let’s use this fact to our advantage.

DISPLAY EVERYTHING!

Does your website showcase EVERY major unit you sell? As we learned from the above section, many of your customers are finding you online because of your products—it’s not always because of your home page’s general information.

I cannot count how many times I’ve had conversations with cross-over dealers while never knowing they were cross-over dealers! Imagine all the revenue they lost because their website was missing those products!

You should realize there are two types of customers:

  • Those who are familiar with OEM brands and their specific models.
  • Those who are not as familiar with OEM brands, but still have a desire to purchase.

By going to the magical land of everything anyone could ever dream of with unlimited options, Google, people search for specific models, or even general terms like “used motorcycles.” People have the ability to research what they are looking for, what they think they are looking for, and what they have yet to discover.

Then they start comparing you with the competition. They compare units available. They compare the details. They compare pricing. Not having a unit listed might cost you a phone call or a visit. See why it’s important to display everything?

Look around your showroom floor—is every unit on your floor also listed on your website? If so, great! If not, no worries, let’s get moving – you got this!

ORGANIZING YOUR INVENTORY

Now—before you start loading all your units for sale, be sure to get your website’s inventory section categorized. Yes, it is important to have things like OEM logos branded on your website, but it’s even more important to display the category of units you sell for those who don’t know exactly what they are looking for.

Inventory Section – The inventory tab should have a drop-down menu which displays every vertical you sell. For instance, if you sell snowmobiles, ATV’s, motorcycles, lawnmowers, and generators under inventory, it should display this:

  • Showroom Models (20xx)
  • New Inventory (New Non-Current)
  • Used Inventory (Previously Used, Pre-Owned Certified, Pre-Loved)
  • Custom Inventory
  • Snowmobiles
  • ATVs
  • Motorcycles
  • Lawnmowers
  • Generators
  • Value Your Trade (optional)
  • Specials

If you are exclusive to one OEM brand, listing the models in the drop-down menu is also something you could do. So, if you are a Harley-Davidson® dealer, it could look like this:

  • Showroom Models (20xx)
  • New Inventory (New Non-Current)
  • Used Inventory (Previously Used, Pre-Owned Certified, Pre-Loved)
  • Custom Inventory
  • Sportster®
  • Dyna®
  • Softail®
  • V-ROD®
  • Touring
  • CVO™
  • Street
  • Trike
  • Value Your Trade (optional)
  • Specials

There are a lot of different ways to word your inventory sections. You have to choose what describes your store personality, and how you want to convey this message. Though, the concept is the same— display EVERY major unit you have to sell!

FINAL STEPS

Now that you’re probably well on your way, here are some awesome things you can do to ensure you generate more business…

  • Verify that all displays of inventory, unit pictures, OEM brands, and drop-down menus LINK to the appropriate places.
  • Have a “monthly unit special” separate from what the OEMs offer as rebates. These specials might promote clearance units or stagnant units you’d like to finally sell.
  • Place an advertisement of your special in the image rotator on your site. Ask your website provider if you need help getting this done.
  • Also, place an ad of your special on free sites such as Craigslist or Facebook.

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Let’s review…

  • Display and showcase EVERYTHING you sell. (I cannot stress this enough.)
  • Display OEM logos.
  • Display units by categories.
  • Make sure everything links properly.
  • Advertise monthly specials for units which are separate from OEM specials.

I hope you’re starting to understand your website really does work for you. By keeping it organized, it will have a maximum effect for your business, and you’ll gain credibility and sales. Remember…you’re the EXPERT!

Stay tuned for next month’s edition – organizing your F&I pages.