As a dealership that likely sells mostly to people in your local area, how do you make sure that your content speaks to the people who live in that area?

The content you post on your website or blog plays two roles: it should both be valuable for the people who are reading it and should also be functional for search engines.

If your content hits both of these notes, it is going to help you perform well in local search results.

Local content is usually going to be more applicable and useful to your readers, but how can you keep your content local and still keep it relevant to the car-selling industry?

Here are some tips:

Get to Know Your Customers

You will naturally get to know your customers by interacting with them and selling them vehicles.

But it’s also important to do independent research when it comes to your customers, to find out what topics they are interested, what kind of research they do before buying a vehicle, and how you can become part of that research process.

The better you know your customers, the better you will be able to write content that is applicable to them.

Your brand likely already has some pertinent information about the demographics that are likely to prefer your brand of vehicle.

Getting to know the people that are likely to buy from your dealership specifically is the best way know what kind of content you should be posting on your website and on your blog.

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If your vehicles are most likely to be purchased by middle-aged professionals, the topics they care about will vary slightly from the topics that young families will care about.

While it is fair to assume that there is a car on your lot for every buyer out there, you should be looking for a way to cater to the majority of people who find your website or blog would want to read about.

It is extremely important to have more than just a general idea of who these people are.

Do you know them well enough that you can come up with topics you are sure they are going to be interested in?

They should be as easy to predict as someone that you know very well and have known for a long time.

During this process, it can be helpful to come up with what is called a customer “avatar.”

This a made up person that embodies your target audience.

As you are creating content or farming content out to a freelancer, you can then use that avatar to help shape the content and make sure that it is relevant and useful to the people who are going to be using it.

Evaluate Your Current Content

Unless you are starting fresh, right now, with a blank website, you probably have some content right now that either does or does not meet your needs.

If you have content on your webpage right now that is not relevant to your locally-based customers, it’s time to find it and revise it so that it is relevant to those customers.

Looking at the content you have right now and seeing how it has performed over time can also tell you a lot about your customers and what kind of content might attract them to your website and, eventually convince them to visit your showroom and make a purchase.

There are actually tools that will tell you which pieces of your content have been the most popular to your customers, but in general, you can look at your Google Analytics and find the pieces of content that have attracted the most people to your website.

Then, look at that topic, how visitors interacted with it (if applicable), and what that can tell you about your site visitors and, by extension, the people who buy your vehicles.

In this process, you will likely find content that does not really meet the needs of your customers or that has not performed well with them in the past. Take this opportunity to evaluate what has gone wrong with that content and revise it so that it better meets the needs of your target audience.

Not all content has to be hyper-local.

There is plenty of generalized content that is going to be just as attractive to local customers as it is to the global market, but if you do have the opportunity to make your content local, take it!

Look for Broad Interests, Local Focus

It’s time to set up Google Alerts for your brand and for vehicle news in general, if you haven’t already.

There are lots of places to find future content topics, and there are also lots of way to make those broader topics have a local focus.

Simply mentioning or recognizing your city or region when writing about a topic can be a great way to include a local keyword and to help even a broad topic relate to the local people who will be reading it.

Some topics are simply not going to be relevant to your readers.

 If you operate in a part of the country that never gets snow, topics about how to prepare your car for snow are likely not going to be of interest.

On the other hand, topics about protecting your car from the punishing desert sun are probably not going to be very helpful if you live in a part of the country that has mild summers and long winters.

With every topic you write, make sure to find a way to ensure it is interesting for your local audience.