Google AdWords is less expensive than most other marketing techniques and can vastly improve a mechanical repair shop’s reach, but few business owners properly know how to use it.
“It’s Google’s world and we’re living in it. We need to play by its rules,” says Ryan Garrow, Enterprise Digital Strategist at Logical Position.
Logical Position is an award-winning digital marketing agency and a Premier Google Partner that specializes in pay-per-click (PPC) advertising.
With over 3,000 clients, 120 billion ads and 93 million conversions, it’s clear the digital marketing agency knows what it’s doing. That is, the agency gets its clients in front of the right audience by utilizing Internet marketing tools such as AdWords, a service that allows businesses to set an advertising budget that only charges if someone clicks on the ad. Logical Position doesn’t stop there. Once the ads are in place, the company works with clients to monitor the market and identify opportunities.
“We work with our clients to answer the question, ‘How do we keep customers coming back?’” Garrow says. “It’s easy to nurture people back in the mechanical repair sector. We can walk a client through that process.”
Garrow shares a few of his top tips for making the most of AdWords and getting to the top of search rankings.
Make the Investment
“When you spend money with Google, there’s a huge opportunity to let it go to waste. Google AdWords is always changing,” Garrow says. “Google sets things up for its benefit, so in order to succeed, you need to work with someone who knows what they’re doing.”
For shop owners that are already up to their elbows in managing their own businesses, partnering with Logical Position is an easy way to save time and ensure that your shop will perform well in Google searches.
If you’re making the investment, it’s important to track the results. Logical Position will do this for you. The agency will work with clients to see where customers are coming from and what techniques are working.
Create a Website
“Google controls almost 70 percent of all searches,” Garrow says. “If you want potential customers to find you, you need a presence online.”
Garrow says that in the mechanical repair industry, there are still many shops that either do not have a website or have something very basic that won’t show up in search results. In today’s digital era, this is a sure way to lose business.
Beyond just having a website, Garrow stresses the importance of a mobile-friendly site.
“Most people are on their smartphones throughout the day,” Garrow says. “If they’re driving and they discover a problem with their vehicle, chances are they’re going to hop on their phone and search for a mechanic.”
If your site isn’t mobile friendly, your shop will not appear in these searches and you’ll lose out on these customers, Garrow explains. Even for searches that are not done on a phone, it’s more important than ever to have a mobile friendly site. Google looks at the mobile version of a website before looking at the desktop version to determine ranking.
Logical Position can also help its clients optimize for click-to-call ads, which are great for emergency situations that often occur with vehicles.
The more places you can list your shop online, the better. A website, social media presence and review sites will all increase the likelihood of having a higher search ranking, but there’s a common mistake that many shops make.
“Make sure you’re consistent in all of your listings,” Garrow says.
This means checking that all of your contact information is the same across platforms— such as business name, address and phone number. If your website says Bill’s Automotive, but your Yelp page lists it as Bill’s Auto, this will hurt your listing.
Focus on Keywords
“The mechanical industry has limited real estate,” Garrow says. “Keywords make a difference.”
Logical Position can help decide which keywords you should be using and which do not make sense. For example, many people use “brakes,” so it may not make sense to use that word unless you’re willing to spend a lot of money, Garrow explains. Using “alignment” may be the better choice.
Not only is the choice of keywords essential, it’s also important to use those words in the right way. Keyword match types help control which searches trigger ads. Many repair shop owners set all their keywords to “broad match,” which allows ads to show for synonyms and other words. This means that if “alignment” is selected as your keyword, a broad match will show your ad if someone searches “skateboard wheel alignment.” That is not the type of search that is beneficial to your shop.
Logical Position goes beyond selecting the right keywords to make sure its clients are using Google’s keyword match types that make the most sense.
Use Location to Your Advantage
For mechanical repair, customers are not going to drive out of their way for service. It’s important to take advantage of the area in which your shop is located.
AdWords allow you to use specific location targets and hone in on a radius around your location.
“If you know that your customers are willing to drive up to 15 miles to come to your shop, you can target a 15-mile radius of your location,” Garrow says.
“When people are looking for repair shops, most look at reviews,” Garrow says.
That’s why it makes sense for repair shops to post reviews.
“Think about it: Most people aren’t going to go out of their way to review a great experience at an auto repair shop,” Garrow says. “They will take the time if they have a bad experience, though. So, if customers have access to positive reviews, they’re more likely to come to your shop.”
Logical Position partners with companies that can help ensure that potential customers are seeing positive reviews. For example, if your shop performs well on Yelp, but struggles on Angie’s List, Logical Position will ensure that customers are directed to Yelp first.
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