Good marketing seeks to meet consumers where they are—and in 2018, that means reaching out to those who do most of their online browsing from a mobile device. Over the last few years, Internet access has shifted away from desktops and toward smartphones and tablets, which means any marketing plan that’s going to get results has to encompass outreach to these mobile users, in particular. And that starts with having a responsive website—a site that’s properly sized for easy navigation from a mobile device.
Do You Have a Responsive Website?
What do we mean when we talk about a responsive website? You probably know it when you see it. A responsive site is one that you can access from any mobile device and browse with ease; if the site forces you to zoom in, resize, or do a lot of navigating to find what you’re looking for, then it’s not a mobile-friendly website, plain and simple.
The best way to tell whether you have a responsive website is to access your site from a variety of devices—including both phones and tablets of different brands—and make sure that it is consistent in its appearance and ease of navigation. If you don’t have a responsive website, that’s something to discuss with your website developer right away.
Why Responsive Web Design Matters
Still not convinced? There are actually several reasons why responsive web design is so crucial for your dealership. We’ll list just a few of them.
- Responsive websites are prioritized in Google search results. Putting aside all questions of user experience for a minute, responsive design is also a critical component for SEO. Thanks to recent changes to Google’s search engine algorithms, mobile-friendly websites are ranked higher than those that aren’t. As such, responsive design is worth investing in for improved ranking potential alone. (Indeed, it’s worth noting that Google has expressly asked businesses to adopt responsive websites, affirming that more and more people search from their phones and tablets—and when Google says to do something, that usually means it’s a good idea.)
- Mobile devices are increasingly critical to the consumer experience. There is also the important fact that consumers on the go tend to turn to their mobile devices to help locate products, services, and local businesses; those who are looking for a dealership in their neighborhood are more likely than not to do so from their mobile device, so it’s important to roll out the red carpet for them with a sleek mobile-friendly website.
- Responsive websites lend immediacy, too. Imagine this scenario: Husband and wife are out running errands. They’ve been talking about possibly getting a new vehicle, and, on a whim, they decide to look up a local dealership and go scope out some cars. They’re obviously going to use their mobile device, not their desktop computer, to find that dealership—and if your dealership doesn’t have a mobile listing, you’re out of the running.
- Having a responsive website enhances your credibility. Another important angle: Websites that aren’t mobile-friendly simply don’t look as professional. Imagine: You use your phone to access a local business website and find that it looks sloppy and poorly-proportioned on your screen. It’s hard to read and unpleasant to look at. You’re naturally going to come away with a diminished view of that company.
- A responsive website is important for customer service, too. You want your customers to have a positive experience with your dealership from the very beginning of the purchasing process to the very end. Well, the very beginning is when the customer accesses your website—so you want to be careful to make it easy for your customer to find the desired information about your company and products, right from the jump. Basically: An easy-to-use mobile website will lead to happier customers.
- Your competition has a responsive website. Okay, maybe we can’t say this with 100 percent certainty—but what we can say is that non-responsive sites are going extinct, and that there are fewer and fewer of them all the time. Mobile is the standard, across all industries—and that includes auto industries. You don’t want to be the only dealership in your market that isn’t reaching mobile users, do you?
- A responsive website is good for your brand. The bottom line, really, is that responsive website design is timely and cutting edge; it’s what pretty much all serious businesses are doing. Adopting a responsive website of your own is important because it makes your site easier to find, and because it keeps your customers happy, but more than anything else it underscores that your dealership is up-to-date with technology; that it is relevant and professional. That’s very much what you want from your brand, because it ultimately helps you earn the trust of your customers.
Making Your Site Mobile-Friendly
The choice to go mobile may not be a choice at all, not for much longer: As Internet use increasingly shifts toward mobile devices, we’re seeing most non-responsive sites become totally obsolete. Before your hand is forced, then, it’s probably a good idea to make the switch to mobile-friendly design, assuming you haven’t already. Get a site that will rank well; that users will be able to find and to navigate with ease; that makes your brand look hip, relevant, and consumer focused.
If your site isn’t already optimized for mobile users, now is the time to head in that direction. Get some mobile devices out and test the site now—and if you don’t like what you see, contact a professional automotive website developer, like iClickAuto, and tell them you’re ready to go mobile today.