I read this article on Searchengineland.com the other morning. The basic point is this: brick-and-mortar stores that have ecommerce websites (so that they can conduct actual click-to-sale transactions online from their paid search advertising) receive $6 worth of OFFLINE, IN-STORE sales from their paid search spending for every $1 they receive in click-to-sale revenue online.
I find that to be a truly startling statistic. If a brick-and-mortar business that sells online is only looking at click-to-sale ROI, are they under-counting the return on their paid search by a factor of 600%?
The ramifications for car dealers are tremendous. If you are only evaluating your PPC from the website leads and subsequent sales that your ad budget is generating, you may be dramatically mis-evaluating your program and mis-allocating your marketing budget.
According to NADA Data 2011, only 24% of the average franchise dealer’s 2010 marketing budget is Internet-related spending. The average dealer spent $6,600 per month in online advertising in 2010.
Here’s a quick breakdown of Dealer Spending by Marketing Channel in 2010.
As you can see, while online spending is higher than any other single channel, it is still not even a quarter of a typical dealer’s total spend. I wonder if dealers aren’t spending more online because they are under-valuing the return on their paid search budgets by only tracking form submissions. I always recommend to our dealers that if you are doing paid search advertising, you should ABSOLUTELY use call tracking so that you can account for the phone calls you’re driving with your ad spend.