How important is photo size to online automotive shoppers? Well, based on the data reflecting website engagement, we believe it’s pretty significant.
The Dealer eProcess website platform leverages large photo size and exclusive interactive features in a number of unique ways to drive maximum engagement, lead conversion, and sales.
To start, let’s look at the four main website providers‘ Search Result Pages (SRPs) and compare SRP photo size as well as functionality on SRPs that might maximize the impact of vehicle photos.
All screenshots for all providers below were captured at the same 100% screen resolution. Let’s take a closer look.
DEP platform – offering the largest SRP photo in the industry (375×281 pixels), allowing shoppers to efficiently scroll through listings and quickly identify vehicles that appeal to them.
We don’t stop with just a large primary photo; shoppers also have the ability to click through all vehicle images (controls highlighted in Blue below). Clicking through the photos on the SRPs is the number one site usage metric on DEP’s website platform. This metric typically ranges between 50% to 80% of all clicks/interactions with the website.
Additionally, DEP’s SRPs offer access to a dynamic gallery (View All) and within the Gallery feature, shoppers can expand any photo to a full-screen view. No SRP offers this photo size or interactive features.
Further down in this blog, we’ll look at Google Analytics tracking events that show engagement on these photo display features – with 4 of the top 5 website usage metrics all related to photo engagement.
DEP Gallery Feature, available on both SRPs and Vehicle Details Pages (VDPs):
Full-screen image available by clicking on any photo in the Gallery. Shoppers can’t get any closer to a vehicle without driving to the dealership and standing next to the car:
Competitor 1 – the smallest SRP photo displays (240 x 180 pixels) with no access to additional photos or ability to increase photo size.
Competitor 2 – the next largest SRP photo after DEP. DEP images are 47% larger than DealerInspire’s (254 x 190 pixels). As with Dealer.com, there is no access to additional photos or ability to increase photo size on the SRP.
Competitor 3 – DEP SRP images are approximately 60% larger (243 x 162 pixels). There is no ability to click through the SRP thumbnail photo but the “Sneak Peek” does open a small gallery under the listing. However, there is no ability to view full-screen images on SRP (or VDP).
The following Google Analytics data helps us understand why the large photos and interactivity to engage with the photos is critical to increasing engagement, time on the site, and ultimately leads. The CPE Tracking events screenshot below illustrates that 4 of the top 5 usage events on DEP websites are related to photos and photo engagement.
As mentioned in the DEP section above, CPE-Photo-Gallery-Next, is the #1 website usage statistic on the DEP platform. This action represents users clicking through the images at the SRP due to our large photo size and interactive capability. The next item, CPE-Scroll, is shoppers moving up and down the SRPs looking for vehicles that grab their attention (which, with our largest SRP photo size, allows shoppers to skim through listings much more quickly and efficiently).
Item #4, CPE-Photo-Gallery-View is shoppers clicking on the Gallery link on the SRPs, allowing their computer/tablet/phone screen to explode with photographic content. And lastly, CPE-Photo-View-Larger represents shoppers clicking on photos in the Gallery for a full-screen display. The only way to get more visual information on a vehicle would be to drive to the dealership and stand next to the car, truck, or SUV.
As a result of the large photos, interactivity, vehicle information, and variety of calls to action at the SRP level, the majority of leads on DEP sites are submitted at the SRP, producing higher overall lead conversion levels compared to the other platforms mentioned above.
Lastly, the Google Analytics integration with the DEP website dashboard provides a powerful subsection of usage stats. Looking at the section in red, readers of this post can see the growth in engagement for a new Lexus client that launched July 11th As shoppers interact with our platform, watch how the three photo engagement features (Gallery Next, View Gallery, Enlarge Gallery Photo) increase in usage and the resulting impact this engagement has on other Vehicle Stats as they also increase (New, CPO, Used VDP views, etc.).
In conclusion, automobiles offer a lot of visual content and that visual content significantly influences which vehicle a shopper might want to buy. Shouldn’t dealers have a website solution that maximizes the influence those photos generate for online automotive shoppers?
Dealer eProcess recognizes when there is a problem in the automotive industry – and quite frankly, these can be FRIGHTENING for your dealership. This Halloween, follow us as we count down the 13 most frightful problems dealerships face digitally, and learn how Dealer eProcess takes the tricks and turns them into treats!