How Digital Advertising Can Help You Finish the Year Strong Despite an Auto Sales Slowdown



Today marks the first business day of October 2016. For those of us in automotive, that means it’s industry sales day, where all the manufacturers report sales for last month.


It looks like the industry is going to be down two percent from last September, with the average transaction price down $82 from August 2016 – both indications that sales across the industry are softening a bit.


Data from across the platform is consistent with those results. Compared to last month, website views per dealer are down seven percent and vehicle details page views per dealer are down nine percent.


With the sales slow-down, the arrival of next year’s models, and pressure to meet annual sales goals, it’s no wonder you might be feeling the pinch.


But there’s hope! And plenty of it, as digital advertising can transform sales performance – in this case, helping you move aging inventory through strategic campaigns and specials that, above all else, will keep a keen eye fixed on your dealership’s bottom line. Here’s how:


Digital Advertising costs in Q4 historically increase as dealers and manufacturers look for a strong finish to close out the year. Last year, for example, paid search cost-per-click increased 6.5 percent from August to September. This year, cost-per-click is only up three percent, which indicates a potential buyers’ market for digital advertising.


Your dealership has an opportunity to capture additional impression share at a seasonally-discounted rate, which may prove critical to helping you finish the year strong despite the industry-wide sales plateau.


You rarely read of anything getting more affordable these days, but that’s the case if we’re talking digital advertising. Stretch your ad budgets further with a multi-channel ad campaign strategy to reach high-quality end-of-year shoppers, many of whom will be looking to score a great deal on last year’s inventory.


James Grace is the director of analytics product management at