"Websites for Car Detailers: 3 Common Mistakes"
January 03, 2012 05:59PM
Websites are possibly the perfect marketing tool for reconditioners. First, you offer a niche service that their customers won’t necessarily ask a friend about for a referral. Second, your job is VISUAL, and a website gives you opportunity to offer visual proof that you are, indeed, the expert you claim to be. And finally, detailing is not exactly cheap. Carwashes are cheap, and people rarely research them online. But for what they’re paying a detailer…people want the DETAILS. And though I’ve MAJOR ACCEPTANCE among detailers in the last 3 years, that website is NECESSARY, I keep seeing the same 3 mistakes that really kill an otherwise good effort.

1. Title must contain the SERVICES you provide and the CITY where your business is located.
There are hundreds of millions of websites on the Internet and many of them are competing against you every time a customer uses a search engine to look for ‘car detailer’. What the customer sees in these search results is the title of your business website. This title is your first contact with potential customers who, according to this study, spend less than 15 seconds on average, browsing an entire page filled with dozens upon dozens of links before making a decision. With less than a few seconds of attention, your website title must immediately let potential customers know that your business is in or near their city and that you provide the services they are seeking.

2. Not enough info about you, the owner.
It doesn’t take a study to know that people relate to people. Your website may be filled with wonderful information, but if you don’t personalize your information with photos of you and your staff, your potential customers might move on to another site that does. Create an “About Us” or “About Me” page that answers: How long have you been in business? How did you get into the business? Have you won any awards? What do you like most about your job? What do you do when you’re not detailing? Give your customers a little peek “behind the curtain.” Yes, they want to like your work, but THEY ALSO WANT TO LIKE YOU.

3. No specials or coupons.
A special or coupon can be that final little push that takes people down from “the fence”: those customers that just can’t commit to actually booking an appointment. You don’t have to offer a Groupon-like 50% discount to give your visitor a little “nudge” either. 15 – 20% off, offering a free service (like a premium wax upgrade), offering a seasonal service at a discount (interior only detailing in the winter @ 15% off), or combining services (engine deal with premium wax) at a combined discount can work. Expiration doesn’t have to be frequent. You can change up your specials and coupons by the season. So many automotive businesses do this very well: tire service, brake service, oil/lube centers, transmission shops, etc. You see their specials in the paper, on their street signs, and on their flyers…because they WORK. But reconditioners, as a group, can improve on the tactic of strategic discounting.

You can make these fixes…in an afternoon.
Take the time to gather and email pictures and bios of you and your employees to your web designer. Have him rewrite your title to: “[City] Auto Detailing by [Company Name]. Once a season, find a special that’s PERSUASIVE without being DESPERATE. These tweaks can make a tangible difference in the phone calls and emails your site generates.

Original Article: []

Robert Keppel
Applied Colors
Paint Touch Up Systems for Detailers
Re: "Websites for Car Detailers: 3 Common Mistakes"
January 03, 2012 06:25PM
Great advice!
Re: "Websites for Car Detailers: 3 Common Mistakes"
March 11, 2012 07:36AM
In regard to coupons :
Detailing services vary in quality, thoroughness, price and convenience . For this reason, a discount coupon may not impress a prospective customer very much. It isn't like discounting a known quantity ; a case of Mobil brand motor oil, a box of Kleenex . The customer may suspect that the prices are jacked up to compensate for the coupon savings .
By contrast, steady customers who know the value they receive may leap at a discount price for services they've bought before .
It is probably more effective to offer a free service with a purchase instead of a discount . Example : Free wheel well and tire dressing with every 'wash and wax' ( a $ 25 value ) . The customer might well imagine that it isn't costing you much to provide the extra service but he will realize he's getting something for nothing .

It is best to offer a dollar amount off of the price instead of a percentage off because cusomers are not interested in doing math problems to see how much they save .

Make the coupon simple and straight-forward . Use as little fine print as possible ; make the offer good on all vehicles, on all days, for both new and repeat customers . Remember that your shop's offer is only one of many things the customer has to think about .

Also : Always list an expiration date on the coupon .


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/11/2012 07:37AM by Doug Delmont.
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