A car shopper’s buying journey can begin anywhere, at any time, on any device. Most start their high funnel search for the right vehicle on a 3rd party marketplace or OEM website on their way to your dealership’s website. Some have already zeroed in on their favorite model and the dealership they want to buy it from, and turn to Google or Bing to get directions.
It’s important to be present everywhere shoppers are throughout that journey, and that includes having a strong local search presence at the bottom of the funnel. How to best optimize your dealership’s Business Profile on Google changes frequently, as Google continually tests, changes, and adds features.
We’re on top of all of them, and Google’s latest pilot will help you make your Business Profile more interactive and engaging by adding your inventory directly to it so people can see your available cars right from Google Search results..
We’re excited to let you know that Dealer Inspire has teamed up with Google to give you the opportunity to surface your cars for sale inventory directly on Google Search.
Every new Google feature or algorithm update can cause a lot of hype in the industry about how it will affect visibility, traffic, and conversions — so we wanted to provide a look at where they stand today. Let’s break it down.
No, the pilot only showcases your inventory within your specific Business Profile on Google, which typically appears when a user searches your exact dealership name or a local query like “BMW dealer Naperville.”
At this time the ability to provide Google with an export of your inventory feed is only available to select car dealers or their authorized partners in the United States.
Dealer Inspire is part of the pilot, so we can help you get the hook up!
There is no backend user interface to upload your inventory, nor does Google scrape your website to gather your available vehicles. Instead, your trusted marketing partner (hopefully that’s us!) will provide Google with a specifically formatted inventory feed which will contain all the data needed to populate the cars for sale section of your Business Profile on Google.
Currently, your inventory is only viewable on mobile platforms. It’s possible that at some point in time in the future, your inventory will be visible to users via the desktop experience, as well.
In addition to listing all of your in-stock new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, users can drill down to a VDP level experience to get more information about a specific vehicle, including:
Once your inventory feed is initially set up and sent to Google, no manual updates are required. Your trusted marketing partner will provide Google with a fresh inventory feed every four hours so that sold units and new arrivals will be accounted for in a timely manner.
At the moment, there is no traditional lead generation functionality (i.e. form fills) within your Business Profile on Google. However Google does present users with the ability to call your dealership with one tap, share the vehicle with someone else, or explore the vehicle in more detail on your website.
Google has not built out any native reporting for this pilot at this point in time.
In the meantime, you could certainly use UTM codes within the “Dealer Listing” CTA to track how many users go from viewing your vehicle within your Business Profile on Google, to viewing it on your website. Custom phone numbers are also permitted for call tracking.
By listing your car inventory on Google, there’s potential you will see:
If you want to improve your dealership’s presence and experience, it’s important to first start with the basics of optimizing your dealership’s GMB profile, by:
The car shopping experience is fragmented and takes place across multiple channels, online and off. To maximize your impact with local shoppers, you need to meet them with the best experience wherever they are, whether that’s at the top of the funnel on Cars.com or the bottom on your local Business Profile.
Overall, this seems like a great pilot that’s worth trying out to make your Business Profile on Google more engaging and interactive, and we’re excited to measure its impact with our dealers to try it out.
If you’d like to be among the first dealers to activate cars for sale within your Business Profile on Google, just tap the button below and let us know!
Sales: (866) 798-8335