We have been helping auto repair shops improve their digital marketing and keep their repair bays full since 2005. Here are some tips we have discovered to help your shop grow:
1) Start with Your Website
Your website is your greatest marketing tool. Apart from the cost to design and develop your site and minimal hosting and maintenance fees, it is essentially free to add content to your website. Unlike traditional advertising that requires you to distill your message into a few hundred words or a short sound bite, you are free to tell your complete story online.
Your website functions as a digital front door to your business. You know if you can get people in the door, you will be able to convince them your expertise is what they need. Just like your shop, your website's digital curb appeal matters. In the same way you put effort into how your shop looks from the street, making sure it is friendly and inviting, so should you make sure your online presence looks appealing and functions well. You have as little as .05 seconds to grab the attention of your potential customers. 75% of consumers say they make snap judgments about a company based on its web design. Furthermore, a website that looks good must be user-friendly. Your customers need to be able to find the information they need to pick up the phone or take their vehicle to your shop.
What can you do to ensure your website works for you?
- Consider hiring a professional and proven web design and development company
- Make sure your potential customers can find your website by practicing the right Search Engine Optimization practices (or pay for professional help)
- Make visually-appealing promotions easy to find
- Make sure people quickly find your phone number and location
- Give potential customers the opportunity to sign up for email updates
- Make sure customers can review you
- Feature some testimonials on your website's home page
If you already have a website, is it working for you? If not, Cube Creative would be happy to evaluate it to see how it can improve.
2) Social Media
Social media marketing provides you with some of the highest returns on your time and monetary investments. It is free to create personal and business accounts on most platforms. Facebook and Instagram advertising can stretch your marketing dollars while providing excellent data returns regarding how many people see and interact with your ads. That data is rarely available with traditional television, radio, and newspaper advertising. Many auto repair shops set up their social media accounts before investing in a website. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your social media:
- For auto repair shops, focus on Facebook first, then Instagram
- Use posts to send people to your website
- Encourage users to review you
- Post regularly, but not often more than twice per day
- Feature customers with interesting vehicles or mysterious problems you diagnosed and repaired (with their permission of course)
- Post sharable content (interesting videos, fascinating stories, and promotions)
You can take your social media presence to the next level with high-quality photos and videos. Videos especially can cover a lot of ground. You can publish it to YouTube, where it can help generate an audience, then Facebook and Instagram. You can use a good video to run adds on all three platforms, see what works well, then run new ads with the same film. You can use that same video to call people to click on links to your website.
3) Email Marketing
Email marketing can provide a great opportunity to connect with your existing and potential customers. Some tips for getting the most out of your email marketing, without it consuming all of your marketing hours include:
- Utilize a user-friendly service such as HubSpot, Constant Contact or Mailchimp
- Email content you make for social media and your website (blogs, stories, videos, photos, etc)
- Make sure your emails are simple, with clear calls-to-action
- Email promotions and exclusive service deals
- Start with a simple monthly newsletter
- Feature your mechanics
4) Remarket to Existing Customers
Your key audience is the one that already supports your business. Remind your existing customers of the great experience they had at your shop. Encourage them to follow you on social media, sign up for your email newsletter, and regularly visit your website. Ask them to follow you on your various platforms during the checkout process.
5) Push people to review
Your happy customers likely rave about your service and expertise in the shop. Ask them to share that via Facebook and Google reviews. Your web design and development company can implement systems on your website that makes it easy to review your business.
6) Digital CTA to any Traditional Advertising
If you choose to continue utilizing traditional marketing strategies such as television and radio advertising and sponsorship, billboards, and newspaper ads, include calls-to-action that send people to your website. This will help you track the effectiveness of those ads and provide your potential customers with means by which to follow your company even while their vehicles are working well, so they remember you when it is time for maintenance and repair.
For more information about how Cube Creative can help your auto repair shop grow through web design, development, and digital marketing, contact us. We have helped businesses like yours keep their phones ringing and repair bays full. We would love to tell you more about what we can do for you.