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6 Digital Marketing Strategies for Car Dealerships in 2024

Learn about some of the fundamental and most effective digital marketing strategies and take your automotive business to the next level.

In today's digital age, it's more important than ever for automotive businesses to have a strong online presence to reach customers and sell cars. One of the best ways to achieve this is by implementing various digital marketing strategies. 

From search engine optimization to social media marketing, you can use many tactics to boost your sales and drive traffic to your website. In this article, we'll explore some of the fundamental digital marketing strategies that car traders and automotive professionals can use to increase the online visibility of their businesses and reach more potential customers. 

Whether you're just starting with digital marketing or looking to refresh your existing strategy, this article is a must-read for anyone looking to take their automotive business to the next level.

 Digital marketing strategies for car dealers

1. Know your target audience

2. Optimize your website

3. Be present on social media

4. Local Google search results

5. Show credibility with reviews

6. Build an email list



Before we even start discussing any marketing strategies your car dealership should adopt, we need to start from the basics of marketing - knowing your target audience. 


What is a target audience?

A target audience is a group of people you want to reach so they can buy from your business. A target audience is the very foundation of any business and all your marketing efforts.

You might think you can skip this step, but we promise it will make all the other steps so much easier. When you know exactly who you are writing for on your website, in your email, and all your other marketing, content will practically write itself. Knowing who you write for will also influence your tone of voice, use of emojis, colors, graphics, etc.

And not only that, your audience will automatically be more engaged with your brand/company. That’s how you build trust and long-term relationships with your customers.

Knowing your target audience is valuable information for making business decisions further down the road. You’ll know exactly how your audience behaves and what makes them buy.

How to find the target audience for your car dealership?

If you've already been in the business for a while and you're interested in getting to know your audience better, you can:

  • Think about your past and current clients - A simple brainstorm about your past and current clients is sometimes all you need for this audience research. Think about who they are, where they are from, and even how they dress or talk. You’ll be able to make a pretty comprehensive picture of your audience based on this small exercise.
  • Review all your social media channels - who interacts with your content? What are their gender and age? Where do they live?
  • Review your Google Analytics - Google Analytics hosts an invaluable variety of information about the people who visit your website. It will also show you where these people spend their time on your website, allowing you to conclude what they're interested in the most.
  • Talk to your clients or conduct a survey - You can also just talk to your clients and get to know who they are: what they like, how they use your product, why they chose you amongst your competition, etc. Surveys allow you to get into the nitty-gritty of things. You can get to know your past customers on a deeper level (and gather a ton of information to build your target audience). Additionally, you can ask how to improve your business or how to help them solve their problems.


Once you have all this valuable information, go ahead and create your buyer persona! Your imaginary buyer persona, who you based on all that amazing data you gathered, will be at the foundation of every marketing effort you make.

When you’re writing a piece of content, like a blog article or social media post, imagine you’re writing it for this one exact person. You can even name them! For example, if you’re a car trader who sells cars to private customers, perhaps your target persona will be Mark - a 30-year-old graphic designer who knows nothing about cars and needs help and guidance from a friendly dealership. Mark is also a millennial, so he enjoys memes, informal conversations and hates calling.

There’s so much valuable data in those two sentences that could shape your business approach.

Go ahead a create your own target persona and audience!


Now that you know your target audience, developing your website to address that particular audience will be much easier. Your website is your digital storefront and will be the cornerstone of your digital marketing efforts.

Website marketing comes down to many elements, but we’ll focus on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and break it down into two categories: content and design.

Content optimization

You’ve probably heard the term SEO thrown around the internet or mentioned by your employees, but what does it mean? Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) basically means how much Google loves your site. You’ll rank higher in search results if it likes it a lot. If it doesn’t like it, you’ll end up on page 5 or further. Or nowhere at all. 

So how do we make Google happy? Thankfully, there’s a lot of information out there and even more step-by-step guides, but we will highlight some of the most important things you can do to optimize your car business’ SEO results.

  • Do keyword research - Just as audience research was the starting point for your overall marketing strategy, keyword research will be your starting point for developing your website marketing strategy. Keywords are terms that people type into Google when looking for something they need. For example, someone looking for used cars in France will type in “used car dealership France”. You’ll want to determine what keywords you want to rank for in Google and then implement them throughout your website. There are plenty of beginner-friendly keyword resources online, but you’ll probably want to hire an SEO expert to help you with this.
  • Keep your content updated - Google loves fresh content! Keep your website updated, as it will signal to Google that your site is active and improving. Since Google’s primary concern is that the content it’s displaying is valuable and informative to its users, it also favors sites that keep their content always fresh.
  • Invest time in your blog - This continues on the point made above. The easiest way to keep your site updated and active is by posting regularly on your blog. If you don’t already have one, make one! Post news about your company, what you’re working on, how you help your customers etc.; the possibilities are endless.

Design optimization

SEO doesn’t stop at content and keywords. It also extends into the realm of design. Good design will keep your potential customers browsing your site for a long time, signaling to Google that your website is engaging and helpful.

Here are some things you’ll want to consider when it comes to design optimization:

  • Make it responsive - Many people nowadays browse the internet on their phones. Google also introduced mobile-first indexing a while ago, meaning it will first rank your website based on its mobile version. That means your website’s design needs to look great not only on desktop but also on mobile and tablet. Hiring a graphic designer to help you with this or buying a responsive template for your website is a must.
  • Speed - The speed of your website will also be a huge factor for your clients and your SEO rankings. The faster your website, the better your Google position. Also, if a potential customer lands on your website and needs to wait 5 seconds or more for it to load, the bigger the chance they will click out and abandon it altogether. Speed depends on a lot of technical factors, so best outsource this part to a freelancer or employee! Quickly and easily check your website speed via this handy link.
  • Photos - High-quality images signal customer trust and professionalism, but they also add another layer of SEO optimization. By adding alt tags to your images, you are signaling to Google that you care about your website being user-friendly. And we know what that means already - better rankings! Check out our guide on how to take better photos for your business and boost your sales! Better SEO and better sales, it’s a win-win situation.


Like it or hate it, social media is an ever-present part of life for many people, including your customers. After work and during breaks, it’s where we go to relax and connect with people and brands we care about. You don’t want to miss the opportunity to be in front of your customers’ eyes, so get your social media rolling!

There are plenty of social media channels to choose from, but you’ll want to base this decision on where your target audience spends most of their time. For example, younger people will gravitate more to Instagram or TikTok, while an older audience will be more likely to spend time on Facebook or LinkedIn. 

The social media landscape is changing all the time, but don’t let that scare you away. Just pick a few channels and stick with them!

Social media will allow you to instantly share anything with your potential customers. You can run ads or giveaways (everyone loves a good giveaway!). And you can connect with your clients directly through dms or direct messages, answering their questions quickly and directing them toward your website. As a bonus, your Facebook or Instagram page can boost your SEO rankings, although their primary purpose will be building brand awareness.

You can go even further by making your social media the core of your business. Some traders only feature and sell their cars through Facebook and Instagram, which essentially act like their storefronts. Social media possibilities are endless!

If you need a bit of inspiration to kickstart social media for your car business, check out our LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook pages.



Did you know that 46% of all Google searches are looking for local businesses? (source) Did you also know that 88% of all Google searches for local businesses end up calling or visiting the business within 24 hours? (source)

If your business is not optimized for local google search results through Google My Business, you might be missing out on many potential customers and sales!

Having a Google My Business page is also great for, yep, you’ve guessed it - SEO. Additionally, optimizing your My Business page, regularly replying to reviews, and keeping your info updated will position your business higher in the search results on Google Maps, directing even more potential clients your way.

How to get started with local SEO?

  1. Open a Google My Business page.
  2. Populate the page with as much information as you can (address of your business, working hours, etc.)
  3. Add photos of your business's interior and exterior, cars, or any other relevant images.
  4. Use Google Posts regularly within your My Business account to show Google you’re an active business. 
  5. Ask or incentivize your customers to leave reviews.
  6. Genuinely reply to every review that comes in, positive and negative alike.



This point ties directly into our previous one about local search results. One massive benefit of having a Google My Business listing is that it will allow you to accumulate reviews. Many people decide whether or not to buy something or engage with a particular business based on reviews alone.

If you’re just starting with this strategy, ask your past customers to leave a review on Google and build from there.

Negative reviews will inevitably happen as it’s pretty impossible to please 100% of your customers 100% of the time, but don’t let that get to you. You’ll want to reply to every negative review in a genuine and positive way. Acknowledge, apologize and try to offer a solution in your reply. We strongly believe that responding to a negative review can sometimes signal more about the credibility of your business than receiving a 5-star one with no comment. 

A great thing about reviews is that they won’t just help your marketing efforts. They will also help you actively improve every aspect of your business and make adjustments so that your future clients will get an even better experience with your service. 

Replying to reviews means you care about your customers and their thoughts, whether they are positive or negative. We also suggest you respond to positive reviews as well. If you answer only to negative comments, the people who take the time to leave a positive review might feel unappreciated for their good intentions.


Email marketing is one of the cornerstones of marketing in general. Having a solid email list to fall back on is a great way to market directly to your target audience. The beauty lies in the fact that the people on your list have either already purchased from you or are interested in your offer and ready to hear what you have to say.

If you need some numbers to back this up, here’s what Hubspot says: “40 percent of B2B marketers say email newsletters are most critical to their content marketing success, and 73% of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via email.”

Email lists will allow you to build personalized content uniquely relevant to your target audience. Social media may come and go, but you’ll always have your email list to fall back on. 

Start by creating a newsletter sign-up on your website or add a checkbox during the registration process. Check all the GDPR rules first to make sure you’re compliant with current regulations! Once you build a sizeable email list, you can use any email marketing tool to design email campaigns, like MailChimp, Sender, or Campaign Monitor, to name just a few.

Best digital marketing strategies for your automotive business in 2024

As technology continues to evolve, so do the new ways of reaching our customers. A digital marketing strategy has become more of a requirement in this digital age than something optional for any business. 

With the help of these digital marketing strategies, your business will evolve and prosper. By incorporating these strategies into your marketing plan, you can effectively drive traffic to your website and boost sales for your automotive business. The key is to figure out which strategies work for YOUR business and audience. Adapt to the digital landscape, keep testing new ideas, and you’re on a great path to success!

If you need a bit of inspiration to kickstart your marketing efforts for your car business, check out our LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook pages. Leave us a comment on social media and tell us your favorite marketing strategy!