This research project started out very biased. If you’ve followed Search Engines MD for any length of time you will see we interact constantly with another Minnesota based business who has a patented solution for advertising lease and finance specials called Dealer Teamwork. Having been close to these guys for many years we came into this project with the idea that they were just going to dominate the lease keywords.
For all of the Minnesota terms we used, like “Jeep lease deals Minnesota,” they had at least one of their clients show up in the top three, and sometimes they took up all three spots. That is where their home office is, and absolutely makes sense why they dominated the market there. They were also the a top three result in any market that we encountered their solution in, so it is easy to see that their solution is very effective for these terms.
What was eye opening about the results was that the specials themselves weren’t the major indicator we had assumed they were going to be. Having actual lease offers, monthly payments and the rest of the details, wasn’t critical for rankings. In fact, we saw websites in every market rank for these terms without a single actual lease offer on the page. This was the strategy utilized by one of the largest auto groups in the nation, and they were frequently in the top three results, and almost always first, when they had a dealership of that OEM in the market. Their text leaned towards frequently asked questions.
We also saw a lot of instances of the “Global Incentives” or the stock incentives pages from the website companies ranking really well. OEM relationships will skew which company does best for these terms, such as Sincro for Chevrolet stores, but overall we saw Dealer.com, Dealer Inspire, and DealerOn have incentive pages rank for these terms. They did have additional modifications to have content below the incentives, a text block talking about leasing that manufacturer, but the content tended to be on the shorter side. When testing to see if we could modify these pages we typically needed to talk to the website company to have them add the text to the page. Your access may vary, but this is an option if you want people to land on a page talking about your current incentives without having to force them to another page to see what is actually available.
How to Rank For Lease Keywords
1. Prioritize the Location, The OEM, and the Word “Lease” in the Title Tag
The dealerships that ranked in the top three spots constantly started their title tags like “Ford Lease Deals in Denver.” The biggest indicator was the word “Lease” as one of the first few words of the title tag. Our testing for this is starting simple with phrases like “OEM Lease Deals City State.”
2. Create Content That Answers Common Lease Questions
This one was oddly the least straightforward. Reading it now makes complete sense, but we did come into this audit with the idea that the actual offers were going to be the most important factor. Frequently asked questions are an easy way to demonstrate expertise, and seeing many dealerships rank really well with this style of content makes sense now.
3. Have Top Level Navigation Links Pointing to Page
Having a link in your top level navigation, also known as your top menu, with the word “Lease” in it was also a positive indicator for rankings. Internal links are a critical part of any SEO strategy, and putting your lease pages in the menu makes for much simpler indexation and ranking.
4. Make Your Page Useful
Having SEO text and a link from your menu will make your page likely rank for your lease terms, but without useful information, or at least a call to action to send people to your specials page, you may just be wasting your customer’s time. Make your pages useful, and don’t just chase rankings.
How to Get Started
The first step is to talk to your website or SEO company, and ask them to create a lease page on your website. You can also work with a company that has a specialized tool for lease offers. The most basic keyword is going to be “OEM Lease Deals City,” like “OEM Lease Deals Miami.” Start there for your SEO content, and then modify once you see what your actual terms are when auditing in Google Search Console. We saw four markets in our research that searched differently, and your market may be one of the select few.
The second step is to monitor and adjust. Creating new content gets all of the love in SEO packages, but monitoring and refining old pages can often provide the most value for your dealership. Use Search Console to find your gaps and improve.