An ecommerce auto parts site is always competing. Keeping your store’s marketing efforts fresh and updating content is imperative in this highly competitive arena.
A Baker’s Dozen of Parts Marketing Ideas
Produce an installation video. Sharing know-how and offering some live-action tips can go a long way with bringing in new customers. YouTube is one of the largest drivers of auto parts and accessories online, so filming an installation is a great opportunity to grow sales (or help your retailers grow sales, if you’re a manufacturer).
Sponsor a build. Contributing parts and/or funds to a project vehicle is an way easy to gain exposure on social media. Sponsoring a build puts your business’s name in front of other enthusiasts online, at a car show, and in newspaper and blog write-ups. You might even use the finished car as a focal point at your SEMA booth.
Hold your own car show. Car shows are the place where car people gather. While this can be a big undertaking, the payoff is exposure. Car shows connect with local enthusiasts, and the ‘buzz’ they generate can create interest on social media as well as the local news channels. The fact that you have a car show can be used to build links to your website too.
Pro Tip: Find a cosponsor for your car show – like another automotive company in your area or a local charity – to reduce your workload and increase your odds of success.
Dyno test performance products, and promote the results. Whether you sell performance parts or manufacturer them, there’s no substitute for dyno testing. Performance enthusiasts want details about power and torque, even if they’re not actively in the market. Dyno test results generate interest on social media, links from forums, and more. The dyno testing process also makes for some great video.
Offer a price match guarantee. It’s no secret that consumers are driven by pricing. If you can offer a price match guarantee, you reduce the odds that a shopper will leave your site to hunt for a better price (the guarantee tends to make consumers believe that you have the best pricing). Price match guarantees also help you “steal” business from competitors who offer better pricing, but who can’t match your company’s service.
Ask for reviews and testimonials. Consumer reviews and testimonials are immensely influential – numerous studies have shown that consumers place a lot of trust in them. Consumers often look for positive reviews before buying products from a company they haven’t done business with before.
Start putting freebies in every box that goes out the door. What’s better than a surprise gift? There’s a lot of data to suggest that including a free gift with every order – from T-shirts to stickers – boosts consumer loyalty. If your company is hoping to turn a one-time buyer into a lifetime buyer, a freebie should go out with every order.
Cross promote with another automotive company. Somewhere, there’s another company trying to reach the exact same potential consumers that your company is trying to reach. If you can partner with this company, you can help one another grow.
Offer free shipping, either as a special promo or a new standard policy. Free shipping is a staple of ecommerce. While it’s difficult to offer free shipping across the board (most auto part and accessory retailers exclude heavy or bulky products), a basic free shipping policy is often a great way to boost sales. If your company can’t afford to offer free shipping all the time, consider a free shipping promotion.
Run a Facebook contest. A good giveaway can boost your fan base, raise awareness of your company and/or your products, and even generate a few sales. Facebook’s massive popularity makes it the ideal platform for giveaways and contests.
Start Retargeting (aka Remarketing). One of the biggest challenges in marketing is putting the your message in front of the right people at the right time. With retargeting, it’s possible to show advertisements (banners and text ads) to people who have visited your website. It’s possible to target people by actions they took, like showing ads to people who looked at a particular product page, ads to people who started to checkout (but didn’t finish), etc. Retargeting can also be used to help move people towards a purchase.
Forum sponsorships. While we have some very specific warnings about buying forum advertising (read the link to learn more), forum advertising can be a good way to generate visits to your website and awareness of your company.
Finally, from our article Five Ways To Instantly Boost Parts Sales, here are some easy marketing ideas that your company is hopefully already doing:
- Start an email newsletter. Email isn’t the latest and greatest online marketing “trick”, but it’s a proven way to keep your business’s name in front of customers. Just make sure your emails aren’t purely promotional – try to share useful or interesting content in addition to discounts and promotions.
- Launch a pay-per-click ad campaign. While pay per click advertising is deceptively simple (too simple, if you ask us), it should be part of every company’s marketing mix.
- List products on eBay, Amazon, WalMart.com, etc. It’s not always easy, but listing product for sale on Amazon, eBay, and other large marketplaces (like WalMart.com) is a good way to drum up interest in your products. This is especially true if you have a new product – consumers put a lot of trust in brands that are listed on popular and well-known ecommerce sites (like Amazon).
- Streamline the checkout process on your site. It’s not a marketing idea, per se, but it’s a damn good idea. The easier you make your checkout process, the more orders you get.
- Make sure every page has unique content (and good META tags). Google and Bing always rank a page with unique content higher than a page without content, all things being equal. Same goes for pages with META descritiption and HTML title tags.
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