Rank Highly in Automotive SEO by Backlinking Among Stores

Rank Highly in Automotive SEO by Backlinking Among Stores

Any agency will tell you that search engine optimization (SEO) is important for your website. (We spend plenty of time on it here at 9 Clouds.) 

Tackling the task of optimizing SEO for your automotive dealership is a large feat. We know time is money, but prioritizing your effort on the most important SEO tasks can be overwhelming. Where do you even start?

Think of all your SEO tasks like a traditional holiday meal. 

Backlinking is the side dish to the main course of your whole SEO menu. And dealerships owning more than one store have the advantage: they can backlink their own websites between locations (like bringing a dish to a holiday potluck). 

How can you capitalize on this unique opportunity? 

What Is a Backlink?

Let’s get down to business. A backlink is a link that sends people to your website from another website. You see text underlined or in a different color as you’re scrolling blog posts or websites. When you click on that backlink, you go to another page or another website. 

According to HubSpot, backlinks are important for three basic reasons:

  1. Driving visitors to your site who could later convert into leads.
  2. Helping search engines find and index all the content on your site.
  3. Telling Google how credible your site is, so it can determine when you show up on Google for different search terms.

All of these links in the paragraph and numbered list above are backlinks, FYI. 

How to Build Backlinks for Automotive SEO

This post by the SEO experts at Moz gives a great general overview for building backlinks for your website. Google releases updates to its ranking rules and algorithms multiple times a year, and Moz usually is right there to give us updates about how it affects SEO.  

See what I did there? Moz just earned a backlink by being an industry expert. I trust their expertise enough to share with you, and Google recognizes my backlink as an endorsement of their site, therefore increasing their SEO ranking. 

How does this correlate to your dealership? Moz’s expertise and livelihood is digital marketing. Your expertise is selling cars. And while you might not have the time to build an industry-leading blog, there are plenty of other ways to earn backlinks. 

Backlinking When You Have a Single Rooftop 

Some common ways dealerships earn backlinks include:

  • Advertising on sites like Autotrader.com or Cars.com.
  • Submitting websites to car-related directories. 
  • Linking out to other dealership or OEM websites (hoping they’ll link back to you).
  • Getting local news sites to link to you when they write or air a story about something related to your dealership.
  • Sponsoring local events and happenings in the hopes that they’ll return the favor and link back to you.

You should also practice internal linking, or directing traffic from one page on your website to another relevant one. For example, the “Why Buy” pages about specific models could link to your dealership’s about page or to an SRP page featuring that specific vehicle model.

Backlinking Between Multiple Stores

If your dealership has more than one store and more than one website, you control your own backlinking destiny. You now have the power to link websites to one another — building up each website’s automotive SEO. 


Let’s consider an auto dealership called “AutoPro” that has two physical automotive stores located in different cities. Backlinking between the two store websites allows AutoPro to cross-promote their locations to customers. 

For example, if a customer visits the website of Store A but lives closer to Store B, they could be directed to Store B’s website through a backlink, making it easier for customers to find the most convenient location. This can lead to increased foot traffic and potential sales at both stores.

Win #1: You are getting traffic to your second website. 

Win #2: You created your own backlink, increasing your backlinking authority with Google for all your stores. 

When creating content on your site, consider how it is beneficial to your audience AND to your industry as a whole. Google likes relevant backlinks, and if you stuff irrelevant backlinks into your site, it could hurt your SEO instead of helping it. 

Here are a couple good questions to ask yourself: 

  • Is this link helpful to the users on my site if they click on it?
  • If I was a visitor on this site, would I want to link this content on my own site?”

Again, Moz has some good insight here:

“Internal links that tend to perform the best … tend to be the ones that drive real traffic, and they sort of continue a visitor’s journey. They help people find what they’re looking for, and it’s also the case that the ones that … aren’t perceived as helpful seem to have less of an impact on the pages they link to.”

The same goes for backlinking. Remember to help the visitor (and potential customer) along their journey. Google will reward you. 

Other Areas to Place Backlinks

Here are a few other ideas to get you started on your backlinking journey.

  • Homepages: Take this opportunity to link your other locations or to inventory specials at the other locations. It’s ok to show visitors that you have other dealerships in the area. 
  • Navigation menus: A Chevy shopper might be interested in a dropdown option showing what your other Chevy dealerships in the area have in stock. You could include this in a “More Inventory Available” link. 
  • Contact pages: People might want to know how to contact your other stores. Links to the other dealership sites would help them. 

Amp Up Your Automotive SEO 

Backlinking between multiple store locations is like a Thanksgiving feast for your automotive SEO. Each link contributes a unique flavor to the overall menu, enhancing your online presence. 

By strategically connecting your websites, you create a network that promotes cross-promotion, directing customers to the most convenient store and boosting foot traffic. These backlinks amplify your SEO, drive traffic and create more potential for sales at your stores.

Want help building this Thanksgiving meal? Learn more about how we can help.

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