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Autoshop Solutions, SEO, AdWords... Shine some light on my web presence.


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Hey guys,

 

I recently opened my shop (2 months) I started with autoshop solutions, I got their customer website package and 300 of google adwords per month. The folks over aut AS told me before hand that it woudl take time for the SEO to mature and to start getting results from google etc. Well its been 3 months since the site has been up and I have yet to get ANYTHING from google or the internet in general. When I logged into my control panel and took a look at the keywords they set me up with they were completely unrelated ie. "transmission shop" when I specialize in European makes. Ive searched high and low and have other people search and when looking for bmw, mercedes, audi service Ive gotten as far back as the 9th page with nothing. Has anyone had a similar experience with AS? I have someone who has a proven record of SEO whom a fellow shop owner friend of mine uses and swears by that says he can get me on the 1-2 page in 60 days. Thoughts? I feel like I am throwing away 1100$ a month. :wacko:

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Neat little trick our IT guy figured out, the landing pages we are using now go through a google registered domain, and the links point to our regular domains, anyhow, the SEO guys have us come up 10x on the local searches, have notice a very substantial change. I am very happy with the results.

Edited by HarrytheCarGeek
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which is a scam? Autoshop solutions or HarrytheCarGeek's IT guy's trick?

The whole, "Hey, we're from google and can get you on the front page for a low monthly cost of xxx.xx", then you find out they are not from google and they have done nothing for you.

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I was with AS also . I gave them 6 months and I had the same problems. Their response was to ask for more money. I fired them and switched to Kukui and have been very satisfied with the results. We are in a large metropolitan market, Phoenix AZ, so it is harder to move up in ranking.

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I was with AS also . I gave them 6 months and I had the same problems. Their response was to ask for more money. I fired them and switched to Kukui and have been very satisfied with the results. We are in a large metropolitan market, Phoenix AZ, so it is harder to move up in ranking.

 

That was the answer I got as well, First it was lets increase your adwords budget from 300 to 400. Well with each relative click for me costing +/- $6 with a $300 budget that leaves me with $10 a day, thats less than one click a day so in my opinion its completely ineffective.

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I spend less that that with kukui and am rank top 2 on google searches. Your way over paying. I'm not thrilled with kukui, I feel like we got screwed when they set up our website ( different thread for that story), but for what I'm paying them, I'm getting way more that you are for $1100.

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I spend less that that with kukui and am rank top 2 on google searches. Your way over paying. I'm not thrilled with kukui, I feel like we got screwed when they set up our website ( different thread for that story), but for what I'm paying them, I'm getting way more that you are for $1100.

 

Ho wold is the website? How long with KuiKui?

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Euro,

 

$1100 a month is HUGE! For that, they should be walking you thru how to make an additional $3000 a month.

 

Did you get together with them to pick the Ad Words? They can search the actual use of each word or term.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just an update, Ive cancelled the adwords with AS after reviewing it my budget of 300 a month was bring me less than 2 clicks a day. I am thinking about leaving AS but they are trying to tell me I would have to buy out my contract. I am not sure how good it would be for my web presence either to jump ship right now.

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I am in the process of switching my website campaign. They told me have the domain transferred to godaddy. That way I own the domain. Just ask for the domain auth. code # and tell them unlock the domain. That way you keep your presence online except about 2 weeks for everything to get everything done.

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  • 8 months later...

We've been watching this thread carefully and now is a good time to respond. Every shop is different, both in a geographic and demographic competition. In competitive markets we have had many shop owners move over to our services, save money and still spend well over $ 1,100.00 a month because our specialization allows us to keep our costs low. We also have many shops that absolutely dominate their marketplace and spend less than $ 500.00 a month. There is no one size fits all solution.

 

Funny enough, the competitor some shop owners claim "fixed" their ranking problems used every word of content from the website we developed. That means, that Autoshop Solutions can still take credit for ranking results, sometimes it just doesn't happen as fast as the shop owner would like it too.

 

Sometimes you can spend more and get better results, sometimes no matter how much you spend it just takes a while for Google to move you up on the list. A confirmed fact is when you are brand new on the scene; it's going to take longer to rank than a business that has an established web presence, especially when you are in Los Angeles, CA.

 

In the end, it's all about partnerships, we work with professionals all around the country. In this case, we struggled to build a relationship as we continually had billing issues and the account was left with a significant balance.

We welcome constructive criticism, it's how we grow, we also want to make sure both sides of the story get told.

 

Anyone may feel free to contact me directly.

 

Danny Sanchez, CEO Autoshop Solutions

Edited by Autoshop Solutions
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I spend roughly $500/mo with adwords... it's ok... I probably need to up my budget but $300 doesn't get you much at all. I spend $425 with Yelp, I think that's a waste of money.

 

Really, what helps the most is to be the top 3 organically on google places. I made my own website and I dabble here and there in SEO. When I first started, my business didn't even show up. After a few months, it was on page 5. Now it's on the first page but fluctuates from page 1 and 2.

 

Top three are always the same and they're always businesses that's been around for a while (like 20yrs...)

 

Make sure you ask every customer for a google review, that seems to help. If you're top 3 on google places for your zip code, then you've got it made. My friend owns a shop and he comes up number 1 for his zip code and he is the busiest shop by far.

 

Never heard of AS BUT I do appreciate their response and what he said makes sense. Not the defensive answer I would expect from most companies

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Hi Jay, thanks for the compliment. We just try to put our customers first and let everything else fall where it does.

 

On your website:

 

1. Content is king - you don't have very much written content for Google to help understand where to place you

 

It's not just about ranking #1 for keywords, it's about ranking page #1 (or listing #1 is great!) for the RIGHT keywords. Conversions happen (phone calls and cars in your bay) when the right visitors find your website using the right keywords. You can be number one for lots of keywords and still not have the phone ring with the right customers - if the phone rings at all.

 

2. Love your videos! :) Unfortunately, Google doesn't read videos :(

 

Videos can be part of your conversion strategy, I know it is an important part of online marketing and you've got a head start. Unfortunately when it comes to helping you rank for the right keywords, it offers very little SEO. It does, however, show Google you are trying. That may be much of the reason you have had some success moving up the ranking list. In order for Google to move you up higher, you'll need to give them more written content.

 

3. SEO is not all about getting Google to place you high on the list.

 

SEO is all about giving the user a great experience on your website, and Google will reward you for it. If you focus your attention on answering the right questions for people looking to get their car serviced, there is good chance your content will be very favorable to helping you achieve your ranking goals. Great websites are built to deliver the user to the most relevant content as quickly as possible, removing any obstacles that may get in the way of the ultimate goal, the customer calls to make an appointment! There are many tools in the SEO toolbox and every business needs something different!

 

4. PPC Budgets/goals

 

Google Adwords or PPC is an amazing tool to drive traffic! PPC performance is directly related to the quality of the website. Meaning, Google gives every website a quality score for the keywords you would like to compete for in Adwords. If you have a low-quality score, your PPC performance will be poor. You can't "buy" your way to better performance either, throwing more budget won't solve the problem. We find most shops can spend less on PPC budget with a higher quality website and get better performance. I can't guaranty much in life but I can assure you, your PPC performance is lacking. You just don't have enough quality content on your website, no landing pages (that I can see anyway), or unique written text to relate to keywords.

 

Lastly, Don't trust your ranking results on your own computer. Your browser is tainted with your preferences and aside what some may try to convince you, you can't get real ranking results on your own browser when you've been searching the same keywords over and over. Unfortunately, real ranking results are not available to the casual internet user or small business. There are many companies like ours that do have tools to monitor and report true keyword rankings. BTW, using "incognito mode", does not work! That only hides your activity from others using your computer! Lately, we've heard companies spreading this as a solution.

 

You've got a nice brand image, and a nice headstart on most shops that are missing the fact that in order to be successful, you have to compete online. Keep it up!

 

We are in your backyard - Our office is in Apex, stop in anytime and I'll be glad to show you more!

 

Danny

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  • 2 months later...

Update as of March 28th, 2017, please see the screenshot for a graphical view of Eurozone Motors' Google Rankings. The results were climbing very quickly until he lost faith and couldn't understand that a brand new business isn't going to climb the ladder in just a few months, at least not in a major market. I hope that by posting in here I can show that no one should jump to conclusions on the performance of any vendor without first seeing the evidence. At any point, we would gladly welcome back Eurozone Motors and get back to work on making his account perform successfully.

If nothing else, please take away this...  No reputable SEO company will ever guarantee #1 placement.

Have a great week everyone!

Danny

58da6fe8ec5ed_ScreenShot2017-03-28at10_08_31AM.thumb.png.fb3ef9965b1c87b81cf8df980b3a45af.png 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'll confirm most of what Danny at Autoshop Solutions says. The problem is business owners who don't have experience with websites, usually those who have started a new business, expect "instant" return on their website spend. They also don't realize the amount of time and cost it takes to generate the quality website content now required to achieve good organic search position. Especially if shop is in big city or has lots of aggressive online competition.

Google has hinted for many years that they suppress search position of new website/domain for a period of time. They place a 'handicap' on new domain names/websites that is rolled back in 6 month steps taking 24 months to gain full ranking position. They do that to prevent spammers from throwing up multiple junk websites targeting specific keywords (remember the micro-website SEO craze years ago). The delayed ranking is frustrating for legitimate businesses but just what we have to work with. And as Danny said there is no way to buy your way to good ranking on new website. Money can help somewhat but not to the degree owners expect.

Sad thing is that by the time the newbie business owner jumps to another website provider/SEO the results are just starting to get some traction... and new provider takes the credit for all the hard work of first developer... also if the new provider copies all the work of previous developer and then they can put more effort into SEO which further helps search position (and their false bragging). In the end the business ends up spending more than if they had remained with their first website provider and had more patience (or spent the money required to get what they wanted in first place). There is a website provider (mentioned elsewhere in this thread) that is notorious for doing this and preying on inexperienced or uninformed shop owners.

SEO is just another form of advertising that requires regular work (cost). And a lot more initially with a new website. Any website provider that says SEO is "included" is not being honest with you. Those days are long gone... It takes effort and patience. SEO is a long term play. The return is tremendously better than any other form of advertising, IF customers are actively looking for your services, BUT you must have the patience for SEO to work. Most advertising is a one shot deal. Websites and SEO have on average about 5 year life. So when prorated over that time period the value is very good. But sadly most shop owners can't see that value.

PPC also depends to a certain degree on time online and quality of business online presence. And in my experience any PPC budget below $1,500/month really isn't going to produce much when you look at the cost of quality auto repair keywords in major cities. Also, quality PPC managers can't do an adequate job for less than $1,500 a month. Just think about what you charge per hour and then do the numbers on how much time they have to spend managing your account... to say nothing of the overhead cost of training to keep up with rapid rate of change with Internet marketing. Just try managing your own Adwords account for a while so you can appreciate what it takes to do a good job... So for a pro to do PPC your spending $3,000/month just on PPC. The alternative is minimal/low quality management and just pour more money into the ad spend (shotgun approach). Google will gladly take all the money you throw at them!

Edited by RobMax
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Good topic, gonna chime in. I agree with @Autoshop Solutions and also agree with @RobMax on the work behind quality SEO. The techniques used today are enhanced and not the same as we could get away with 5-10 years ago. I have a few sites that dropped off in rankings and required a new SEO strategy to adapt to Google's algorithm changes over the years. The right content is very important as is domain age/relevance, keywords in page titles/content (not so much meta keywords anymore), quality back-links, screen rendering/responsive designs, coding with the right markups behind the scenes, SSL, etc. 

Designing a local site is a bit different than designing a site meant to target a broader geography. It's true that in busier metro areas with many competitors, it's that much more difficult to beat them within the organic search results, so it can take time and creativity (this is where adwords can make up for that). Think about what your customers are typing into Google and use those words and phrases in your content and page titles and make sure your site is user friendly and encourages time on the site and page clicks. I find that many shop owners don't really check their site that often, it's a good exercise to see if you can find yourself...looking for a specific service. 😁

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Nice update @RobMax and @Alex. You both make excellent points. I hope everyone reading this can conclude every shop is different and every market is too. Just duplicating what another shop owner may be doing might not be enough or could be way too much. A good marketing company can help you navigate your marketing budget. 

 

 

 

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

         5 comments
      I recently spoke with a friend of mine who owns a large general repair shop in the Midwest. His father founded the business in 1975. He was telling me that although he’s busy, he’s also very frustrated. When I probed him more about his frustrations, he said that it’s hard to find qualified technicians. My friend employs four technicians and is looking to hire two more. I then asked him, “How long does a technician last working for you.” He looked puzzled and replied, “I never really thought about that, but I can tell that except for one tech, most technicians don’t last working for me longer than a few years.”
      Judging from personal experience as a shop owner and from what I know about the auto repair industry, I can tell you that other than a few exceptions, the turnover rate for technicians in our industry is too high. This makes me think, do we have a technician shortage or a retention problem? Have we done the best we can over the decades to provide great pay plans, benefits packages, great work environments, and the right culture to ensure that the techs we have stay with us?
      Finding and hiring qualified automotive technicians is not a new phenomenon. This problem has been around for as long as I can remember. While we do need to attract people to our industry and provide the necessary training and mentorship, we also need to focus on retention. Having a revolving door and needing to hire techs every few years or so costs your company money. Big money! And that revolving door may be a sign of an even bigger issue: poor leadership, and poor employee management skills.
      Here’s one more thing to consider, for the most part, technicians don’t leave one job to start a new career, they leave one shop as a technician to become a technician at another shop. The reasons why they leave can be debated, but there is one fact that we cannot deny, people don’t quit the company they work for, they usually leave because of the boss or manager they work for.
      Put yourselves in the shoes of your employees. Do you have a workplace that communicates, “We appreciate you and want you to stay!”
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