Coversion Rate Optimization

A 15-Minute Check Can Create More Opportunities and Sales!

Feeling like your web presence just isn’t clicking the way it used to? Not getting enough business? Worried about the competition?

Many of our customers come to us with the same questions. If you’re searching for answers, a fresh website is a great place to start.

Often, the solution is usually much simpler and is a better use of your time than a massive overhaul: your SRP and VDP probably just need to be revisited. With some minor changes, you could see a massive boost to your lead generation!

In this article, we’re going to share our secret sauce for generating high-quality leads. These are easy to do yourself without bringing in support teams.

What Is Conversion Rate Optimization?

Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is a way of increasing the number of users who perform an intended action on a website, which can be buying a product, signing up for a service, or clicking ‘add to cart’.

Why Should You Care About CRO?

Because that’s how you sell more cars! Your operational management team’s goal is crafting your floor team into a conveyor belt that turns customers into sales. Why wouldn’t you want your website to operate on the same principle?

There is a ton that goes into a successful website and CRO is among the most important items. CRO is about the long game. You’ll find it well worth your effort.

How Do You Calculate Conversion Rates?

Conversion rate can be calculated by using this formula:

(leads generated ÷ website traffic) * 100 = Your conversion rate %!

So if your website gets an average of 200 leads and 5000 sessions (using Google Analytics as a tracker) per month, your conversion rate would be:

(200 ÷ 5000) * 100 = 4% Conversion Rate

 

What Counts as a Conversion?

This is the part that we believe some people overlook. In our humble opinion, you should only be reviewing anything that can be converted into a sale.

This means calls, website chats, and lead generation forms (inventory, finance, trade-ins, service requests, etc.) that lead to sales.

This does not mean form starts (but not finished!) or landing page views.

Landing page views and form engagement are incredibly important to building an audience profile, but they do not count as conversions.

How Do You Track Your Conversions?

There are several tools available to you that you can use to track your conversion, such as

  • Google Analytics
  • Adobe Analytics
  • Your website CMS

Ask your website provider how they track conversions and if you need assistance setting them up. They might already be tracking them as far as you know!

If you are using a 3rd-party provider for your financing applications, get in touch with your support representative and they will most likely know how to connect all of your conversion tracking tools to your analytics platform of choice.

What is a Good Conversion Rate?

Now that you understand what CRO is and how to track it, what do you do if you find out your results are poor? Do you need to change everything up or make minor adjustments?

The answer is the most important response in all of web design. Ready?

It depends.

That’s not very helpful, we know! Let’s dive in and get to a more actionable solution.

The commonly accepted average conversion rate for web leads in the automotive vertical is around 1.5%.

This number will fluctuate. Don’t panic if you’re at 1.51% and a new study comes out that says the floor is 1.75%.

Why? Ultimately, this number is useless for you. This may be surprising due to all the sales pitches from digital marketing companies. But it’s the truth.

The reason why it’s not very useful is because your conversion rate depends on several factors completely out of your control. These can be:

  • Location: Rural vs. Urban
  • Region of the Country: (the southeast of the U.S. is far more hospitable to a Get Best Price button than the northeast)
  • OEM: A Honda dealer will receive more leads than most Acura dealers. If you can afford an NSX, you probably aren’t likely to put in a lead online.

If you’re a Chevrolet dealer near Atlanta, GA, you would not be as shocked to learn that your website operates on a 10% conversion rate on web leads. If you said that you’re an Acura dealer in the northeast and you are pulling a 6%, we’d be more impressed.

Keep this in mind!

 

Your Website is Your Digital Showroom

Here are some tricks and strategies to help you improve your website conversions.

SRPs and VDPs: Keep It Simple!

First things first, a clean, simple website will usually outperform one that is a visual nightmare. If things start to look busy to you, the website owner, they are likely twice as confusing for a customer. Good UI/UX (user interface/user experience) is crucial!

In short: simplicity wins.

 

Call to Action

Automotive Dealer Inventory Calls to Actions

 

Your call-to-action (or CTA) should be readable and clickable on both mobile and desktop. These are the most important items on your site besides your inventory!

On your SRPs, keep your calls to action minimal. Remember, this is the first time a customer is viewing this inventory. Reduce your CTAs to the absolute minimum.

Customers can become paralyzed by choice and will ultimately decide to move on. If you keep your CTAs simple, it’s easier for a customer to focus on finding a vehicle with the right price and less on all myriad of options and considerations they could be making.

CTAs should also create a sense of urgency.  “Check Availability” is one of the least performing CTAs you could possibly use. Most customers know that if they see the vehicle on the site, you most likely have one in stock. And if you don’t, they definitely know you can get them one.

If you’re adding a third or more CTAs, ask yourself: “Is this absolutely necessary to have right here on this page?” If it’s not, dump it. Your customers will appreciate it.

Price is a larger determining factor for a customer’s inclination to submit a lead. “Get Our Best Price” is still one of the best lead-submission generating lines around.

If you have digital retailing tools, focus more on utility. “Get Financed” or “Start Checkout” do not really cut it in our experience. You’re more likely to pique someone’s interest with “Build Your Deal” (as they aren’t feeling the pressure to finish right here, right now).

Images

Another important piece is ensuring your vehicles have images of the vehicle. The vehicle could do well to swap out the stock photo for an actual image. Seeing the vehicle is one of the largest deciding factors to whether or not someone submits a lead!

Pricing

It may seem obvious, but you could have a website designed by Amazon themselves and if your truck is $3,000 more expensive on your site than a competitor’s down the road, customer are not likely to give you their information. They’re calling the other listing.

Make sure your pricing is competitive. We recommend tweaking the following:

  1. Showing discounts before or after the Best Price lead is submitted.
  2. Deciding whether to use Best Price at all.
  3. When compliant, using a red strikethrough to indicate a greater price beyond the Best Price.

If you change your pricing, be sure to change your CTA verbiage as well to match. You do not want to claim there is a better price beyond a CTA only to show nothing!

Forms

This one also seems relatively simple, but it’s missed all the time. Make your customers do the least amount of work possible. That means lowering how many forms you require them to submit or filling out the least amount of information on them. This applies to your service forms, credit applications, SRP/VDP Best price forms; all of them. If you don’t like filling them out yourself, your customers won’t like them either.

Requiring a name, address, phone number, and email address is often too much. If you’re struggling to generate incoming leads, only require name, address, and your preference between email or phone number. Another possibility is to let your customers choose which of the two they prefer. Requiring both can be overkill.

Think Outside the SRP

Reviews also play a huge part into a customer’s likelihood that they submit a lead.

There are two factors that goes into this: average rating and number of reviews. If you have a 5.0 rating on Google, that’s great! If there are only two reviews, that’s less great.

Think of everyone’s favorite ecommerce site: Amazon.

Amazon Shopping Review Features

 

Obviously, you shouldn’t copy everything from Amazon. We created a three-part feature on that mindset, after-all.  But there are some features that are worth mentioning.

Amazon lets you sort through their inventory from highest to lowest reviews.

Anecdotally, most people who use Amazon swear by shopping with this filter. It’s human nature to not to be first to take the plunge on a brand-new

Ask yourself: why would a customer take a chance on your dealership if you’re sporting a 3.0 average and only 20 reviews? Quality and quantity count.

Customer service very much translates into the digital world. Keep this in mind and get happy customers to leave you glowing reviews online.

Videos – More Important Than Ever

A massive change from 2020 to 2021 is the necessity to have video content on your website. Due to COVID-19, shoppers became accustomed to shopping online at a rate that has never been seen before.

No longer will your text descriptions and feature lists suffice!

Now, you’ll need to showcase your inventory with video walkarounds and feature overviews so that customers can have the showroom experience right from the comfort of their couch.

Our recommendations for improving your video walkarounds can be found in this article made by fusionZONE Automotive. The key points you should take from it are:

  1.  Schedule your videos in advance
  2. Take your time and be thorough / be detailed
  3. Have a way for your customers to follow-up for more information

Don’t feel pressured to make a video for every vehicle on your lot tomorrow. Do them in chunks, week by week, and make it a habit Before you know it, it’ll be a natural part of your process and you’ll reap the benefits of a higher time on site and more conversions!

Test, Test, and Test Some More

One of the best pieces of advices is to take it slow and change only a few small things at a time. A/B split-testing can help save you a lot of headaches in the future! Believe us, it’s the worst feeling changing a website’s layout only to find it performs worse than before and getting a third of the leads. For example, you could change one vehicle’s layout, then see if it’s working over the course of a month, then apply it to the rest.

We hope you find these tips and tricks useful! For more exclusive strategies on how to boost your online presence, subscribe to our newsletter! We’ll send the latest issues directly to you so you can stay ahead of the curve.

We all know the importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It’s how we get Google to rank our websites and businesses at the top of the search results page. Now that you’ve done that, you’re hearing you need something called Local SEO, and you’re probably wondering, what is local SEO?

National SEO focuses on Google searches happening across the country, while local SEO focuses on a specific area.

Local SEO is essential to businesses that operate regionally, not nationally. A company like Amazon doesn’t need Local SEO because Amazon is everywhere. However, a local mom-and-pop bookstore or car dealership that serves their customers face-to-face needs local SEO. Any brick-and-mortar business that operates in a specific city will benefit from maximizing its local SEO efforts.

Which, of course, begs the question, how do you maximize your local SEO? Here are four quick tips on how you can optimize your local SEO.

Doing so will bring more traffic to your website and help you convert search traffic to sales.

     1. Create a Google My Business Account

A Google My Business (GMB) page is a great tool to boost your local SEO. When you create a GMB, you must complete all the fields on the form with accurate information. Answering every question is essential and will ensure that your customers can find you and prevent anyone from updating your page with inaccurate information.

Standard fields include business name, address, phone number, email address, and operating hours.

A GMB page will appear in Google search results and help bring awareness to your website. An added benefit is Google will automatically create a Google Maps location for your business, immediately boosting your local SEO efforts. If Google knows how to find you, it can help your customers find you, which is the name of the game.

You should also include pictures and videos of your business and upload new content weekly. By continually updating your GMB page and curating it, you will engage with your customers and make them feel like they already know their way around your store before they step through your doors.

     2. Request Reviews From Your Customers

Before Arrowhead and Sparkletts came along, humans drank from watering holes. But how do you know if the water’s safe to drink? You watch your friends drink first. If other people are drinking from the waterhole, you assume it’s safe.

The idea of social proof and peer affirmation is still in our DNA today. People buy from who they know and trust. Referrals are a great way to generate business, but if someone stumbles upon your website through a Google search, they’ll likely want to see what other people have to say about you. They’ll also want to know how you handle both positive and negative reviews.

By getting reviews from your shoppers, you begin to build a watering hole that’s familiar to locals. But it’s not enough to only request reviews. You also have to respond. At first, when you’re only receiving a few reviews, it’s important to respond to all of them. If you start to receive more than 25 reviews-per-day, you can be more selective.

By engaging with the people who leave reviews, you can help your search results because more people interact with your page. Your answers are also a strategic opportunity for you to include SEO keywords.

Reviews help your business stand out and make your GMB take up more real estate on the Google Search Results Page. A positive review can help you rank higher than almost any other SEO best practice.

     3. Optimize Your Website For Mobile Devices

More people search the internet on their phones than on their computers. If your page doesn’t load correctly and quickly on a mobile device, people won’t look at your page. They’ll hit the back button and go onto the next page. It’s as simple as that.

If you have an iPhone, Google your page. Does it load quickly? Is the formatting correct? Now borrow somebody’s Android and do the same thing. If your website isn’t loading for you, it’s not loading for your customers.

The first thing you need to do is compress all photos and videos on your website. Big file sizes slow down the loading speed of your website.

Optimizing your website for mobile use is critical to Local SEO because people will find your website when they’re out and about. People will be out shopping, realize they need the thing you sell, Google it, and your business will appear. Then they’ll click on it to call you or see if you have the item listed on your website. When your website loads quickly, people will find your business, walk through your doors, and you’ll get more in-store traffic.

     4. Incorporate Local Attractions

Think about popular searches in your area. Do any popular attractions or landmarks immediately come to mind? If so, incorporate them into your meta, URL slug lines, and content. If you own a restaurant in Anaheim, California, include references to “restaurant near Disneyland” or “happy hour near Disneyland.”

You have a local business, and you want Local SEO for it. Including local attractions will ingratiate you as a local.

By creating an accurate GMB, engaging with your customers online, optimizing your website, and incorporating local destinations, you’ll boost your Local SEO rankings and increase your sales.

The first question you might be asking is, what is a Google business profile?

A Google My Business (GMB) profile is a one-stop-shop for a customer to learn all the necessary contact information for your business, such as the address, hours of operation, phone number, website, customer reviews, etc.

It is a great way to boost your business’s visibility and increase your SEO rankings at the same time. The point of SEO is to make your website appear at the top of Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), and a GMB helps to do just that.

The idea of GMB is for business owners to continually manage their online presence and update the information that we used to find in the phone book.

Since a GMB includes your location, or it should, creating a listing is a great way to get local exposure.

So, what should you include in your GMB? And once you have a GMB profile, how do you make the most out of it?

Two common questions. Let’s answer them.

     1. What Should You Include In Your Google My Business?

When you create a GMB, you’ll receive a form questionnaire from Google. It’s important to answer every question and provide accurate, detailed information. Standard information is your business address, hours of operation, business category, reviews, phone number/email address.

There are three reasons why it’s crucial to answer every question:

  1. You don’t want a customer searching for your phone number and being unable to find it.
  2. The general public can fill in any missing information to your listing, so you don’t want to risk inaccurate information.
  3. When you enter an address, a Google Maps location automatically generates for your business. And you want people to find you.

In your business description, you have 750 characters to add some strategic SEO keywords that tell someone a bit more about your business and what makes you unique.

     2. How do you make the most of your google business profile?

You’ve done it. You’ve created your profile. Now what? Here are three quick tips that will help you make the most of your GMB.

     1. Add Pictures and Video

People like to see content and get a sense of your business. With photos and video, you can showcase what makes your business stand out and give people a sense of what to expect when they visit you, so they feel like they’ve been there before.

By adding pictures and video, you create a sense of familiarity. Bonus tip: when you upload photos, be sure to label them appropriately and with SEO keywords. If you own “Bob’s Chevy Dealership in California,” instead of uploading “001.jpg,” label the photo “BobsChevyCAShowroom.”

     2. Engage with Your Customers Through Reviews

When someone takes the time to review your business, take a moment to respond. You can thank the person for leaving a review and visiting your business, but it’s important to acknowledge their review. Responding to a review will also give you a chance to include SEO keywords in your reply, but be sure to keep it sounding like a human wrote it.

If there’s a negative review, don’t let it go unchecked. See what the issue is, acknowledge it, and show other potential customers how you handle a complaint.

Reviews are a common way for customers to ask you questions. Maybe you’re opening a new store soon, and they want to know when it’ll be open. Perhaps a new model is coming out, and they want to see if you have it in stock. By answering questions, you bring in customers, boost your engagement, and improve your SEO ranking.

This brings us to our final step.

     3. Check it regularly

After you create your GMB page, you have to check it regularly.

How often do you come across another business’s GMB page and find the wrong information? Maybe you call the phone number or try the email address, and they don’t work?

Are the hours correct? The last thing you want is for an excited customer to arrive at your front door only to be greeted by a Closed Sign.

How many customers is that business losing because their contact information is wrong and they’ve failed to update their information? Don’t let that happen to you.

Don’t let your GMB Page sit idle. A GMB is a living document and not something you can set and forget. By posting weekly photos and responding to reviews and questions regularly, your business will grow a local customer base, and your SEO rankings will rise.

You’ve done it. You’ve finished your website. It has video content, beautiful graphics, and blogs full of SEO keywords, all to boost your search results on Google. You’re doing everything right, but your page is slow to load. Now what?

People will never see your site because it takes a one-Mississippi to load. A slow-to-load website can be devastating to your business. In the time it takes to buffer and load, someone’s already hit the back button and is onto the next search result. Your website’s been dismissed before anybody ever saw it.

Page speed is critical in user experience, converting searches to sales, and search engine optimization (SEO).

In a time when the need for immediate gratification has never been more prominent, today’s internet surfer expects pages to load instantaneously. If your site doesn’t, that customer will catch the next wave.

Several factors impact page load speed. If your website is slow to load, here are two quick tips on boosting page load speed.

COMPRESS YOUR IMAGES AND VIDEO

People want beautiful images, and you’ve got them. The only trouble is, all those high-resolution images take forever to load. There are two factors to address here: a) the size of each image and b) the number of pictures or videos loading simultaneously.

You need to address both of these issues by reducing the file size of all images and videos. Before you upload that full-size image, be sure to resize it first. If an image is going to display at 400 pixels, don’t upload it at 4,000.

JPGs are your friend. A JPG is a compressed image that still retains the integrity of the image. A JPG won’t become blurry or pixelate when it’s compressed. How do you know if you’re using JPGs or not? When you look a the file name of the image you’re uploading, it will end with a period followed by a few letters. If those letters are JPG, you’re all set. If those letters are TIFF, BMP, PNG, then you’ve found one of the culprits slowing down your page.

Have you compressed all the photos on your page? Even if an image is the correct size for a space, it should still be compressed. Compressed files are faster to load and won’t impact image quality.

If you’re exporting an image from a program like Photoshop, there’s a “save for web” option that will compress the image for you when it saves.

You’ve probably heard that video is a great way to drive people to your website and improve your search ranking on Google. And this is true. Video content is a great way to bring people to your website, keep them there, and sell a product. The only problem is, video can be slow to load. Especially high-definition videos.

The same rule for images applies to videos: compress them all.

Another trick is to limit the number of images and videos on a single page. The more things that need to load, the longer it will take. The idea is to strike a balance between user experience and website design.

Have you ever been to an Ikea? Ikea’s are designed so you have to walk through the entire store before you can leave. Even if you’re running in for a single item and know exactly where it is, you still need to go through the maze. Because, undoubtedly, a set of hangers or dish rack will catch your eye on your way out, and you’ll buy something else.

A website can do the same thing. You don’t need all your images and graphics on the homepage. Guide people through your site with CTA buttons and hyperlinks, so they’ll discover things along the way.

FIX BROKEN LINKS

Have you had the experience of visiting a website, finding precisely what you’re looking for, clicking on the link, only to be taken to a page that says, “404 Error?” What do you do when that happens?

If this happens to one of your customers when visiting your website, they’re going to do the same thing you do: go to someone else’s website.

An easy way to ensure that your pages are all working is to click on them. Go through your website.

If you owned a restaurant, you might ask your friends to go in for dinner one night to test the guest experience, so they can tell you how the food tasted and if the service was up to par. Owning a website is no different. The good news is, you can check these things yourself because your website doesn’t know the boss is having dinner at table six and needs five-star service.

For websites with hundreds of pages, there are programs you can download to regularly test the pages, such as Screaming Frog SEO Spider and Ahrefs. There’s no reason you can’t use both of those or similar programs to double-check the work. When they all come back with zero broken links, you know you’re good to go.

Many factors can slow download times, but compressing images/video and fixing broken links are two quick fixes you can make on your own.

If you’ve made these adjustments and are still having problems, talk to a web developer like fusionZONE Automotive. An experienced web developer can look at factors such as minimizing HTTP requests, using a CDN, configuring server settings, putting CSS at the top and JS at the bottom, etc.

For a diagnostic of your website, get in touch with fusionZONE Automotive today!

When you want to use social media, your website, and other digital marketing tools to drive customers to your dealership, video content is a great way to do it. The good news is, you don’t have to be Steven Spielberg to do it.

By now, we’ve all heard that search engine optimization (SEO) is critical to your website’s success, but SEO isn’t limited to text. It can be boosted by video content as well.

Here are four ways that video content can improve the effectiveness of the SEO on your website and get people through your front door.

1. It All Comes Down To Google

If Google cares about video, you need to care about video. And Google cares about video. So then the question becomes, how do you use video content effectively to improve your SEO in Google’s eyes?

For starters, Google cares about the quality of your content and its relevance to what someone types into Google’s search bar.

When you search for something, Google looks at the text on billions of websites and other types of media that might answer your question to help you get the best answer to your question.

The same is true for your customers. When they search for a particular vehicle model or want to know how often they should rotate their tires, Google searches for text and videos that answer this question. If you have a video that answers this question, Google will point people to your website.

2. Video Generates Traffic

One of Google’s methods to determine search rankings is the amount of traffic going to a page. The thinking is, if a website has a large number of people visiting it, then it must be doing something right. If other people find the content relevant and informative, then you probably will too.

When building a website and social media presence, you want to be that website that draws the traffic and catches Google’s attention. How do you do that?

Engaging video and entertaining content. More people are likely to discover your website through a YouTube or Instagram video than through a specific Google search.

The more videos you make, the more traffic you can draw to your pages. You don’t need to turn your showroom into a soundstage by any means, but consistent content that pertains to your industry will help build your awareness.

Think about what people search for, then see if you can create a video that answers that question. Topics might include:

  • How to save on a new car?
  • Is it better to lease or finance?
  • What cars come with Apple CarPlay®?
  • How do I check my tire pressure?
  • How often should I rotate my tires?

YouTube and Instagram videos that answer these questions and link to your website will raise your awareness on Google.

3. Video Holds Your Attention Longer

Are you still reading this? Wouldn’t you prefer a video that explains this to you? The same is true for your customers. A video will typically keep your audience engaged longer than a blog post will.

This is important because Google tracks how long people stay on your website. If they stick around for a few minutes, Google infers they found what they were looking for. If they click away after a few seconds, Google concludes the opposite.
You want people to hang around. Video grabs attention and consistently holds attention for longer periods.

4. Views Bring Backlinks, and Backlinks Bring Authority

The more people who link to your content and share it, the more authority Google believes you have. This authority is another factor Google accounts for when ranking its search results.

When you want to be at the top of the list, you need to be the most authoritative. Views and shares bring this authority.

By posting video content to YouTube and social media channels such as Instagram and Facebook, you create an opportunity for more traffic to your website that will boost your rankings.

So, what does this all mean? When you create relevant video content that answers people’s questions and holds engagement, it will help tick Google’s checklist and boost your search results ranking.

What are you waiting for? Take out your phone, say, “Action!” and start posting. The more you do it, the more comfortable you will be and the more your search ranking will rise.

If you’re looking for new ways to boost your SEO, you’ll want to consider putting the power of schema to work for your business’ website.

What is schema?

Schema markup, via Schema.org, is code that you put on your website that helps search engines provide more informative results for users. If you’re familiar with rich snippets in search engine results pages (SERPs), then you’ll understand the idea and benefits of schema.

Schema can insert additional information about search results, including product reviews and ratings, hours of operation of a business or upcoming events and dates. The great thing about schema is that it’s beneficial for both the user and your SEO!

The website for schema markup, Schema.org, was created through a collaboration between Google, Bing and Yahoo and developed for users.

The goal of search engines is to provide the most helpful and accurate results for any search term. Schema helps reach this goal by telling both the search engine and the user what your website data means, not just what it says.

Instead of relying on just the meta title and meta description to provide a preview of the search result, schema markup adds other details that could help the user determine they’re on the right track. For instance, pricing and reviews can be added to the search result via schema markup, informing users before choosing to click through for more details.

Why is schema important?

Adding schema to your webpages can help build trust with users and even help them find the information they’re after more quickly, such as your service department’s phone number or hours of operation.

This markup is important for SEO because it helps your pages stand out in the SERPs!

While there is no conclusive evidence that schema markup improves search result rankings, there are some indications that search results with extensive rich snippets, such as schema, improve click-through rates.

If you’d like assistance with adding schema markup to your webpages or finding other ways to enhance your SEO efforts through rich snippets, feel free to contact the experts at fusionZONE!

The How & Why of Filtering Bot Traffic in Google Analytics

Google Analytics is an essential tool for many businesses to measure website performance and understand web visitors’ behavior. Since making any business or website decisions should be based on good data, it is critical that your Google Analytics reports are providing accurate information.

Bot traffic is one common source of misleading or meaningless data, so you’ll have to tackle this issue to help ensure your data is clean and represents real visitors to your site. Let’s look at how bot traffic may adversely affect your analytics reporting and what you can do about it.

What is Bot Traffic?

When you hear the term bot traffic, it includes not only bots but spiders and crawlers that interact with your website. These software applications run automated tasks across the internet, and while some can be helpful, they don’t represent human-generated traffic, so they should be excluded from your reporting data.

Some bots are good and some are bad: think search engine crawlers versus scrapers that seek to clone your unique content. No matter what type of bots are reaching your website, they’re giving you a false sense of reality — at least when it comes to your site’s legitimate user traffic.

Did you know that bot traffic now accounts for about half of all internet traffic? That’s a lot of false data! This surprising metric illustrates the importance of weeding out bot, spider and crawler traffic to your site, so let’s look at how to do so.

How to Remove Bot Traffic From Google Analytics

Bot filtering is available in Google Analytics, but it’s not the default setting. Therefore, site owners will need to turn on the bot filtering setting manually, but it’s an easy switch.

To remove bot traffic from your Google Analytics data, go into the Admin View settings and check the “Exclude all hits from known bots and spiders” option. This list of known bots and spiders is regularly updated as Google finds new traffic sources that fit the bill. By taking this simple step, you’ll be eliminating the majority of bot traffic from your analytics reporting.

Maybe you also want to know how much of your default traffic data comes from bots. One way to get an idea of how much bot traffic hits your site is to set up separate views in Google Analytics and compare the data with and without bot filtering.

It’s also possible to manually filter out some of the remaining unknown crawlers, spiders and bots, but doing so is an intensive task that’s best left to the experts. But remember, excluding all hits from known bots and spiders will go along way in ensuring that you can rely on your Google Analytics reporting!

If you’d like assistance with interpreting your website’s performance and visitor behavior through Google Analytics, the digital marketing specialists at fusionZONE Automotive are here to help! Reach out to our team for more details on filtering bot traffic and other ways to gain insights from your site’s analytics reports.

How often do you update your onsite content, and why? We’re not just talking about updating prices or specials, but also the key content on your website.

Your website and its content aren’t a set-it-and-forget-it situation. Even if you’ve reached your goal of a stylish, informative and intuitive website, there’s always more that can be done to attract new customers and keep your visitors coming back for more.

If your onsite content has been stagnant for quite some time, you may want to think about some updates. After all, there are many benefits to fresh content!

Here are a couple of reasons why it pays to keep continually improve your onsite content:

Creating Value for Your Visitors

If you want your website to become an authority within your market of products and services, then you need to create real value for visitors.

Your site can have the most well-written content and most detailed information, but if it’s old and outdated, it may not be doing your visitors or your SEO any good.

To attract visitors — and the right visitors — you need relevant and fresh content.

For example, outdated content isn’t going to fly for new car shoppers. They want details on the latest vehicles and why the new model is better than the old model. They may not be looking for just any brand-new crossover or SUV; maybe they’re only shopping for models with Apple CarPlay and adaptive cruise control. If your onsite content is outdated and generic, how are you going to attract these buyers?

Likewise, drivers searching for a service center in their area want to know why they should choose one over the other, not just that you do indeed have a service facility.

Creating value for your visitors should be the goal of any website. But how do you attract visitors and potential customers in the first place? That’s right, with SEO! Improved search engine optimization is another benefit of updating your onsite content.

Enhanced SEO

If you’re looking to grow your customer base and attract more attention online, then search engine optimization matters. Creating fresh, tailored content around your targeted keywords is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve SEO and website traffic.

When search engines regularly scan your website to index pages, they’ll take notice of any new content on your site, whether that be new webpages or updates to current pages.

If search engines already recognize your website as a valuable resource for certain topics or keywords, then creating new content can establish even more authority for your site.

Maybe you haven’t quite reached where you want to be in terms of attracting traffic around certain keywords. But by continually refining and even expanding your site content, you can get there.

Have you ever come across a website or blog with lots of fresh content or frequent posts, but it was clearly written for search engines? Yeah, it’s not pretty. That’s why writing merely for SEO purposes won’t cut it.

Updating your onsite content is a great way to enhance your website, both from an SEO and visitor’s perspective. Of course, updating your site with just any content to keep it “fresh” won’t cut it: you need high-quality, relevant content. After all, they say “content is king,” which couldn’t be more true today and going forward.

Is Your Site Content Ready for an Update?

If you’d like some assistance with updating your onsite content, we can help. Reach out to fusionZONE, where we have dedicated SEO and Content teams and are committed to SEO best practices!

Does your website have duplicate content? Even if the content on each of your webpages is unique, the answer may surprisingly be “yes”.

How can this be? Search engines like Google consider every unique URL a separate page.

Imagine your website has the following URLs:

  • https://www.example.com/inventory
  • https://www.example.com/inventory?type=new
  • https://www.example.com/inventory?type=new&make=Toyota
  • https://www.example.com/inventory?type=new&make=Toyota&year=2021

These may have near-identical content based on the inventory search parameters, yet search engines will consider them distinct pages. This is where canonical tags come into play.

What is a Canonical Tag?

If you’re looking to avoid duplicate content issues on your website, then maybe you’ve heard of canonical tags. Canonical tags were developed by Google, Microsoft and Yahoo more than a decade ago to help resolve duplicate content on websites.

A canonical tag is a snippet of HTML code (rel=”canonical”) that tells search engines that a specific URL is the main version or master copy of a page.

Suppose you have the same or similar content across your website’s inventory pages. In that case, canonical tags can designate the primary page. This helps search engine crawlers understand which page needs to be indexed and ranked.

Why Do Canonical Tags Matter for SEO?

It’s common knowledge that Google and other search engines do not like duplicate content. After all, duplicate content makes it harder for search engines to provide users with the most helpful links to their search queries.

Google can penalize websites with duplicate content by displaying them lower in the search results pages (SRPs), either intentionally or unintentionally. If Google can’t determine which version of a page to index and rank for certain queries, it will pick one. The danger here is it may or may not be the one you had in mind.

For these reasons, canonical tags are imperative for any websites to distinguish duplicate or similar URLs.

Implementing Canonical Tags

Now that you understand the importance of canonical tags for your website, it’s time to implement them. You can specify canonical URLs through canonicalization signals via an HTML tag (rel=”canonical”), HTTP header, sitemap, internal link or 301 redirect.

If you have a fusionZONE high-performance website, then you’re all set: our team is already utilizing canonical tags on your site to help avoid duplicate content issues!

Feel free to reach out to the fusionZONE team for assistance with canonical tags, website performance or SEO solutions.

As we discussed in Part 1 of our series, video plays an increasingly vital role in your SEO, or search engine optimization. With search engines like Google placing more weight on quality video content, you don’t want your website to be left behind in search rankings.

This week, we’re looking at effective ways to improve your videos. With the following tips, you can not only enhance the look and feel of your business’ website but also work to enhance your SEO.

Keep these ideas in mind as you build out your business’ portfolio of videos. Your video marketing efforts could pay dividends as you start ranking on SERPs (search engine results pages).

Produce Videos That Inform or Educate

Don’t make videos just to have some video content on your website. If the video is only still images or text content already on the webpage, it’s not adding any real value to the viewer.

Video has some advantages over text and still images, so use them to your advantage. If you’re looking to add a personal touch to your website (and your business), and informative video hosted by an owner, manager or employee is a great way to do so.

In the following example, the dealership uses video to inform and elaborate on its new temporary service center location during construction. The video utilizes drone footage to show visitors where the new service and parts departments are located in relation to the dealership’s other facilities. The video footage is both engaging and educational, and it certainly adds value to the webpage and for any visitors.

The above video is also surrounded by context, which we’ll cover next.

Surround Your Videos with Context

Placing a video or multiple videos on a webpage and calling it good doesn’t do the trick. You want to lead into the video with some context. Introduce the topic through text above the video, then elaborate further below the video.

By surrounding your video with relevant written and visual content, you’ll create a complete picture of the video and page’s topic or goal.

Host Videos on YouTube

While it makes sense to promote your videos on your website and social media channels, it’s a great idea to host the videos on YouTube. For one, Google is much more likely to rank videos hosted on YouTube. Since Google owns YouTube, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they would rather promote content hosted on its property than somewhere else.

YouTube is the largest video search engine, so ranking high can be a win-win for increasing views and driving organic traffic to your website. Google and YouTube rank videos a bit differently, but increasing your views on YouTube can help your video rank higher on Google.

Consider the Technical Aspects

Creating videos for enhanced SEO isn’t as simple as shooting and editing the video and posting it on YouTube and your website. Search engines like Google utilize backend information to categorize, label and prioritize videos. With this information, search engine crawlers and YouTube can better promote your video to the right audiences.

Google and YouTube use various data to rank your videos, including:

  • Title
  • Description
  • Category
  • Keywords
  • Tags
  • Links to the video
  • Comments
  • Likes and dislikes
  • Video length
  • Audience retention
  • Subscribers after watching

Final Thoughts On Enhancing Your Videos

We’ve covered a lot in this short series on video and SEO. Here’s a recap of what we’ve discussed here:

  • Create professional, entertaining videos that add value and people will want to watch.
  • Host your videos on YouTube.
  • Embed the video on your own site.
  • Promote the video across your social media channels for more views.
  • Remember to consider the meta data for each video.

If you’d like further assistance with your video marketing efforts, contact the fusionZONE team. We’re experts in digital marketing and SEO, and we can help your business rise above your competition online!