Pressing on the Gas: Driving Foot Traffic for Auto Dealerships


Consider how you shop for a new car. If you’re like most shoppers, you’ll talk to friends and family, read reviews on third-party sites like JDPower or MotorTrend or watch user-generated content on Youtube. The process also likely includes extensive research on features and pricing on cars that fit your needs. Each search executed, every article read and video watched all leave breadcrumbs that marketers can use to understand the intent of the car buyer and deliver targeted advertising during all steps of the path to purchase.

As a potential car buyer, after all this research, you now have specific cars in mind. It’s time to visit a few dealerships and hopefully, find your dream car. You’re pulling into one lot and you get a targeted ad for the competing lot next door. It features the make and model, even the color, of a car that fulfills your needs. Chances are, you’re going to visit that lot and test drive that car.

Before visiting a dealership, car shoppers spend 59% of their time researching online (Autotrader) and for 61% of people considering a purchase, their first contact with the dealership is a walk-in visit. All in, the average consumer dedicates 14 hours and 48 minutes to researching and purchasing a car (Cox Automotive).

If you’re an owner of a dealership or in charge of marketing for an automotive brand, you’re well aware of this recent shift in consumer behavior. Shoppers are more informed than ever before due to the proliferation of content and easy access to information at their fingertips, no matter where they are.

The potential to reach the buyer doesn’t stop once they’ve completed their research and are in route to the dealership. At this point, the primary driver of generating increased foot traffic is done through targeted mobile advertising.

Geo-Fencing with Conversion Zones Increases Foot Traffic

Here’s a real-world example of our client, an auto dealer, with multiple locations across Texas. They were faced with the exact scenario, commonly seen by dealers nationwide. The client wanted to reach a highly qualified audience of car buyers as they visited nearby competitor locations and ultimately bring in more foot traffic to their dealership.

So, we put our tech to work, using’s new Geo-Fencing technology with Conversion Zones. The advertiser identified the top dealerships across Texas with the greatest need for increased visits and sales. The team developed a comprehensive geo-fencing strategy and set up custom target zones surrounding competitor lots and various other relevant locations. And, we didn’t stop there.

The team and our multivariate algorithms continually optimized the campaign based on latitude and longitude data within local competitors’ dealerships. The team also removed poorly performing target zones and blacklisted certain domains mid-flight to increase CTR and reach even more car shoppers.

To date, has delivered more than 1,000 conversions and a .38% CTR, 
nearly quadrupling the industry average CTR of .08-.1%. Additionally, our auto dealer client can now measure which foot traffic was naturally converted vs. influenced by an ad with’s new Geo-Conversion Lift metric.

Need help increasing foot traffic to your dealership? We’re experts in reaching car buyers through localized programmatic and we’d love to talk. Get started by reaching out to