Welcome!

News Feed Item

New Research: "Deep Linking" Delivers Twice as Many Real Shoppers - and twice the shopping engagement of traditional SEM Campaigns

Data indicates dealerships need to re-think their paid traffic spend

NEW ORLEANS, Jan. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- LotLinx, developers of the auto industry's first deep-linking inventory serving platform, today released key findings at the 2014 National Automobile Dealers Association Conference from a national Dealer Tracking Study comparing Google AdWords' campaigns against a new search strategy: Deep Linking inventory results on over 100 leading auto vertical search sites. The results of this month-long research were eye opening: while Google AdWords spend was significantly higher, driving more raw clicks per dealership (736 vs. 489), inventory syndication at shopping search sites drove double the rate of true, in-market shoppers (489 vs. 233). And Google was dramatically more expensive across all fronts, including critical metrics like Cost-per-VDP-View ($18.55 vs. $3.17) and Cost-per-Shopper ($73 vs. $3.95).

"Since Google AdWords launched in 2000, dealerships have spent literally $billions to drive direct-to-site traffic. Search engine marketing (SEM) currently represents 55% of their total digital spend[1]," said LotLinx Founder Len Short.  "But the auto Internet landscape, consumer behavior and the shopping funnel have profoundly changed over the past decade and inventory search is now the #1 online auto shopping activity.  This research takes a hard look at how that AdWords spend delivers vs. a Deep Link strategy."

How the Test Worked: The study was conducted among 55 nationally representative dealerships in November 2013. Google Analytics data was used for monthly keyword spends, and all comparative site metrics like monthly visitors, VDP page views, etc.  Dealerships' live inventory was syndicated[2] at 130+ popular auto search sites – these 130+ inventory-search sites reach the vast majority (85%) of auto shoppers each month and excluded classified sites like AutoTrader and Cars.com, which don't allow shoppers to click through to dealer site VDPs.

KEY FINDINGS:

PPC vs. Search Site Inventory Syndication: Shoppers vs. Visitors (Monthly)




Visitors

Shoppers

%Shoppers

%New

Monthly Cost

Inventory Syndication

489

489

100%

94%

$1,933

Google AdWords Total/Avg[3]

736

223

30%

81%

$17,444

 

Inventory Syndication Drives FAR More Shoppers: This chart clearly reveals that while a hefty Google AdWords spend delivers dealerships traffic – it is inventory presence on auto search sites that delivers far more true shoppers. The average dealer reported that while AdWords delivered 50% more monthly visitors (albeit at a much higher cost-per), a deep link inventory syndication strategy drove 120% more actual shoppers a month. "Shoppers" are defined here as people that navigated to the dealership site via a specific inventory listing, or went on to search inventory at the dealer's site, i.e. viewed a VDP (vehicle detail page).

One hundred percent of visitors delivered via inventory postings at auto vertical sites were identified as real shoppers, more than 3 times the rate of visitors from AdWords: 2 in 3 Google ad-clicks result in a "bounce", or non-shopping activity (i.e., seeking service, contact or general info.) Worth noting is that competitive keyword campaigns (where dealers spend 2/3 of their PPC dollars, bidding competitively with OEMs, third-party sites and other dealers over key terms) represent the highest per visit cost, and yet deliver traffic with the lowest percentage of shoppers, and the lowest VDP views per visit.

This visitor/active shopper AdWords divide indicates that car shoppers tend to rely on Google at the early or "discovery" stage of their shopping journey(1-6 months out from purchase). Google's own research[4] validates these findings: the #1 thing car shoppers use Google for is "to obtain general info," while only 19% use it to research where to buy.

Inventory Syndication Drives More New-to-the-Dealership Consumers: This new dealership data indicates that the majority of site visitors (94%) generated by inventory syndication represent consumers that never visited the dealership website before – while Google AdWords' campaigns drove a lesser, 81% new traffic. Inventory exposure across "shopping search" sites drives both more – and more new – customers for dealers.

PPC vs. Inventory Syndication: True Cost of Shoppers & VDP Views (Monthly)








VDP Views

VDP Views/Visit

Mo. Cost

Cost/VDPView

Cost/Shopper

Inventory Syndication

609

1.08

$1,933

$3.17

$3.95

Google AdWords Total/Avg[5]

900

1.06

$17,444

$18.55

$73

 

VDP Views Cost 6X More with AdWords: Research from Cobalt[6] shows that VDP views trounce all other behavioral metrics in identifying the very lowest-funnel shoppers and a looming sale. Of course, unlike AdWords traffic, all visitors generated via deep link clicks have already viewed a dealer's VDP, and the chart above shows that they subsequently view more vehicle detail pages per visit (1.08) than visitors generated by the average AdWords campaign (1.06 views/visit).

AdWords campaigns delivered more VDP views/month/dealership than an inventory syndication strategy (900 vs. 609), but at a dramatically higher cost. The real cost to drive a VDP view via AdWords was $18.55, while driving one via inventory syndication at shopping search sites was a low $3.17 – six times less expensive.

Cost-Per-Shopper 19X Lower through Inventory Syndication: And the cost differential for a dealership to generate a true shopper (i.e., one actively searching a dealer's inventory) was even more extreme: $73 via AdWords campaigns vs. only $3.95 through broad inventory syndication. So, while dealerships have been narrowly focused on cost-per-click metrics, touting the couple of dollars it costs to drive a visitor, this new data indicates that the key, new metrics that should be added to all AdWords (and digital marketing performance) reports are Cost-per-Shopper (CPS) and Cost-per-VDP-View (CVV). In this head-to-head comparison, inventory syndication at 130+ automotive shopping-search sites drove twice as many shoppers to dealership websites – at an overall cost of 8X less a month – 6X less per VDP view - and 19X less per shopper.

"Dealerships may still be refining their AdWords strategy, but this new research clearly shows that they also need to aggressively expose their inventory outside general search, concentrating on shopping search platforms where 85% of car shoppers find the inventory that leads to a lot visit" continued Short. "This may represent their best opportunity to use technology to improve both sales volume and velocity."

About LotLinx
LotLinx is the auto industry's first direct-linking technology platform and connects over 6.5 million consumers searching vehicle inventory online every month directly to the dealership websites where that inventory resides. Founded by a team of veteran automotive and digital innovators, the company's mission is to tear down the third-party wall between dealers and their customers, and provide a more positive and efficient experience for dealerships and consumers alike. LotLinx's patent-pending technology replaces lead forms on third-party sites with direct links that transport consumers searching for inventory directly to the dealer's Vehicle Detail Page (VDP), all at a higher conversion rate and fraction of the cost of other online options. LotLinx is based in San Francisco, CA.

Media Contacts
Melanie Webber, mWEBB Communications, 949-307-1723 / [email protected]
Crystal Hartwell, mWEBB Communications, 714-987-1016 / [email protected]

[1] Dataium report, "Rethinking Online Media Attribution," 2012
[2] Dealership inventory syndication to these 130+ sites was performed by LotLinx, for a fixed monthly fee.
[3] An average percentage, or aggregated total, combining branded and competitive keyword campaign results and spend.
[4] Google/Compete "Auto Shopper Behavior Study," 2011
[5] An average percentage, or aggregated total, combining branded and competitive keyword campaign results and spend.
[6] Cobalt Business Intelligence's VDP Study, 2012

SOURCE LotLinx

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Conference Guru has been named “Media Sponsor” of the 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to gre...
DevOps is under attack because developers don’t want to mess with infrastructure. They will happily own their code into production, but want to use platforms instead of raw automation. That’s changing the landscape that we understand as DevOps with both architecture concepts (CloudNative) and process redefinition (SRE). Rob Hirschfeld’s recent work in Kubernetes operations has led to the conclusion that containers and related platforms have changed the way we should be thinking about DevOps and...
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develop...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
The next XaaS is CICDaaS. Why? Because CICD saves developers a huge amount of time. CD is an especially great option for projects that require multiple and frequent contributions to be integrated. But… securing CICD best practices is an emerging, essential, yet little understood practice for DevOps teams and their Cloud Service Providers. The only way to get CICD to work in a highly secure environment takes collaboration, patience and persistence. Building CICD in the cloud requires rigorous ar...
Companies are harnessing data in ways we once associated with science fiction. Analysts have access to a plethora of visualization and reporting tools, but considering the vast amount of data businesses collect and limitations of CPUs, end users are forced to design their structures and systems with limitations. Until now. As the cloud toolkit to analyze data has evolved, GPUs have stepped in to massively parallel SQL, visualization and machine learning.
"Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
"ZeroStack is a startup in Silicon Valley. We're solving a very interesting problem around bringing public cloud convenience with private cloud control for enterprises and mid-size companies," explained Kamesh Pemmaraju, VP of Product Management at ZeroStack, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
"Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Enterprises are adopting Kubernetes to accelerate the development and the delivery of cloud-native applications. However, sharing a Kubernetes cluster between members of the same team can be challenging. And, sharing clusters across multiple teams is even harder. Kubernetes offers several constructs to help implement segmentation and isolation. However, these primitives can be complex to understand and apply. As a result, it’s becoming common for enterprises to end up with several clusters. Thi...
"Infoblox does DNS, DHCP and IP address management for not only enterprise networks but cloud networks as well. Customers are looking for a single platform that can extend not only in their private enterprise environment but private cloud, public cloud, tracking all the IP space and everything that is going on in that environment," explained Steve Salo, Principal Systems Engineer at Infoblox, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventio...