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Buying a car is one of the biggest investments most Americans will make.
It’s not a decision to take lightly. Most of us do a significant amount of research before making a purchase. And since it’s 2015, we’ll likely start that research online.
For all you Lincoln dealers, it’s vital for you to show up when a potential buyer starts to research. Fortunately, it’s not difficult to get yourself in the rankings. It all starts with a little keyword planning.
Think like a buyer
Your marketing plan likely includes a few buyer personas (fictional representations of your ideal customer). When you’re considering online searches, you need to think like that persona, not like a dealer.
That will help you target keywords future Lincoln owners are looking up. You probably know what you want them to search for, but our wishes don’t always match up with reality.
So let’s take a look at the data. These are the top three terms Americans are using in Lincoln searches.
- Lincoln MKZ: The top-ranking keyword for Lincoln is MKZ, with an average of 83,410 hits a month. This is one of the most popular models for the company, so there’s no surprise it’s at the top of the list.
- Lincoln MKX: Just below the MKZ is the MKZ, with an average of 60,620 searches. Again, it’s no surprise to see this model near the top; however, it likely falls lower because the number of luxury car shoppers looking for a crossover is lower.
- Lincoln Navigator: The Navigator averaged 59,950 monthly searches. This one gathers a lot of attention because it was Lincoln’s first SUV, giving it more than a decade of name recognition. Its model name might be another reason it ranks higher. Unlike MKZ or MKX, it’s easier for some buyers to remember.
Localize your search data
You can take your keyword planning even further by localizing your search data.
Google’s Keyword Planner will allow you to define searches by brand, product category, location, and language. You can get super specific — searching for Lincoln, under cars and trucks, in Bismarck, North Dakota. Or you can search only Lincoln across the U.S.
This keyword planner is a free element in Google AdWords, so it’s only a matter of taking the time to dig into the data. If you already have a basic Google account, setting up AdWords is a snap.
After signing into your AdWords account, select “Keywords Planner” from the “Tools” dropdown menu.
Begin your search by typing your keyword in the “Your product or service” box. After that, customize as much as you would like, just make sure your target country is set to the United States.
After you click “Get Ideas,” you’ll be able to see your keyword results, which you further narrow down by competition and suggested bids.
This is particularly helpful if you plan to use your keywords beyond SEO applications and into AdWords campaigns. You’ll want to know the right keywords to catch Lincoln shoppers in your area — without breaking the bank.
Put your keywords to work
Once you’ve generated a list of popular Lincoln keywords for your area, it’s time to put them to work.
You can sort keyword results by average monthly searches, but once you start targeting, you’ll want to consider competition as well as traffic.
Google makes it more difficult to rank for a certain keyword if there’s high competition, but if you narrow your focus down to your local area, it should be easier to gain ownership of those high-ranking terms. Competing locally will increase your chances of showing up for Lincoln shoppers.
When you’ve picked those top terms, make sure they show up in your meta data, blog posts, landing pages, and URLs. Changes won’t happen overnight, but within a few months, you’ll start to see the fruits of your labor.
This is a great place to start your Lincoln dealership’s SEO practice, but like most things in the digital world, it’s constantly changing. Check out our free eBook, “Learn SEO from the Experts,” to get more automotive SEO tips and tricks.