Digital Marketing for the Automotive Industry

In the automotive industry, it’s critical that you know your target audience. Often the best definers of audience within the auto parts industry include age, gender and available disposable income. However, there’s a difference between marketing for a service-based automotive business – like an auto body shop – and marketing for an ecommerce or auto parts retailer.

For service-based repair shops, dealerships, and franchise service centers, paid search will allow you to target new and existing customers within your local area. For automotive ecommerce businesses selling parts and accessories, listing your inventory in Google Shopping and Amazon can be extremely profitable.

What should I know about using Amazon to sell auto parts?

Here are a few methods we suggest Amazon sellers use to improve product sales in the automotive industry.

Amazon Optimization for Automotive

It’s crucial to optimize your product content. Amazon considers keywords in a product title when ranking listings, and with a maximum character limit of 200, it’s best to do some keyword research to determine what keywords have the highest search volume.

Add Customer Reviews

Studies show that nearly 90% of consumers pay attention to online reviews. Reach out to customers who’ve purchased your product or contact local people you know who’ve had a positive experience and ask if they’d write a review. If you have a new product, it’s a good idea to offer it for free in exchange for reviews. This can significantly impact your Amazon rankings and improve visibility.

EBC for Auto Accessories

If you have Amazon Brand Registry, you can differentiate yourself from the pack using Enhanced Brand Content. EBC allows you to create a content-rich shopping experience for your consumers, including graphics, video, expanded listings, and brand information.

Offer Competitive Pricing

In Amazon, the key thing that differentiates one merchant from another is price. And though it’s not the only consideration, price is an important part of the Amazon algorithm that determines Buy Box eligibility. A seller doesn’t have to have the cheapest price – since other factors also go into determining the Buy Box – but pricing (including delivery) needs to be competitive.

How can I leverage Google Shopping for automotive products?

Google Shopping for the auto industry should be based on a comprehensive plan that includes product optimization, strategic campaign segmentation and bid strategy.

To capture the correct audience, make sure your product information is optimized with applicable keywords and product details. This makes it easier to be found based on customer search queries. To further narrow the audience and ensure quality traffic, make use of negative keywords to prevent wasted spend.

Segmentation of automotive product groups in your Google Shopping campaigns plays a large role in the efficiency of your ad spend. Through the proper use of campaigns, ad groups, product groups, custom labels, and a bidding strategy, you can target your audience through easy-to-manage product breakouts.

Is it beneficial to use Google Search Ads for automotive?

Google Ads search campaigns can generate positive results in local search within the auto parts industry. When someone is searching for an automotive part, they often need it quickly. This sense of urgency can be leveraged with targeted search ads for auto parts to bring customers into your shop for parts or service. To get optimal results, you’ll want to focus on SEO before launching into Google Ads.

Should I implement MAP monitoring in the auto parts industry?

If you manufacture a product that is sold by various resellers, MAP (Minimum Advertised Price) monitoring is critical. Manufacturers should work with resellers to maintain a friendly relationship, rather than create cutthroat competition. One of the best ways to establish a good relationship with resellers is to establish proper MAP agreements that establish pricing tactics, where resellers can and cannot compete with the manufacturer. Vertical Rail has helped our clients to create and enforce these guidelines.

How can a small company compete with the automotive giants online?

There are a variety of factors that can affect the success of small businesses facing large competitors.

  • Customer service: Consumers want excellent customer service, along with competitive pricing. Customer service is key – offer live chat or easy access to support if customers need help finding a particular part or if they need assistance getting the right fit. It’s critical that your customer service team is knowledgeable and can assist customers who have detailed questions about parts and services.
  • Simple returns: One of the simplest ways to gain customer loyalty is to offer easy returns at no cost to the customer. Hassle-free returns can go a long way in building trust.
  • Word of mouth: With the rise in social media marketing, the better your service, the more likely your small business will spread across channels, building recognition and a following.
  • Reviews & testimonials: A small auto parts company should also concentrate on gaining reviews on Google Shopping to build trust and confidence in consumers.

What is our experience in the automotive industry?

Vertical Rail has enjoyed a 15-year track record of successful marketing programs for the auto industry including in the Amazon marketplace and Google Shopping.

As a Google Premier Partner, we have a higher level of support available for our advertising across Google. That means if one of your products has an issue, we are more connected with support teams at Google to help us resolve the problem.

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