Booking Sales Without Selling Direct on GeneralTire.com
Consumers in the U.S. mostly purchase tires at big-box automotive chains or local mom and pop shops. Places where you can buy your new treads and get them installed on your car at the same time.
So when we set out to redesign GeneralTire.com for our client, direct e-commerce on their website was not a top priority—but still, how do you help influence that sale from your site? What would the new experience need to do?
First Things First, Finding Customers and Defining a “Sale”
We wanted to build a new site that mimics the IRL sales experience online. So, a little branding, detailed product info about what makes our product better and customer reviews, done. But what are your KPIs sans a sale? For us, it would be a new tire selector and dealer locator tool—this is as close as we can get to an actual sale by sending the customer off to a dealership with their choice in hand.
Now, how to get customers in? Solid SEM, of course. 85% of people turn to Google when searching for a product and tires are no different. So we identified the terms that are most likely to be used if someone is in NEED of tires, not just casually researching. This allowed us to maximize the efficiency of the budget and maintain a low cost per site visit and cost per conversion.
To bring this “sales” experience to life meant seamlessly negotiating, integrating, testing (and trying to break) multiple third-party APIs. A new navigation system that guides users through tire choices. And bringing customer reviews to product pages—a must in the modern era of e-commerce.
Finding the Right Stuff
It’s tricky finding a tire when most people don’t know their tire size. So we added search by car with a simple step through wizard.
Even cooler and more fun—we also made it so you can also search by license plate. And we modernized and optimized the dealer search to find in store.
Adding a Dose of Emotion to all that Rational Tech
To make sure the brand didn’t lose in this new shopping-first environment we gave the site a rugged, grungy look and copy took a gritty, colloquial tone over normal e-commerce jargon. A new section “Why GT” talks about history, technology and what makes GT different. And the biggest Brand win of all—a new experience named Our World to highlight the newly minted Team GT to spotlight athletes and partners in racing, fishing and even tornado chasing that use GT in their professional and personal lives.
Handing Over the Keys
There’s tons of the stuff to manage on the new GeneralTire.com—the dealer directory, seasonal products, product updates, new specifications and technology, Team GT news and more. We did a full CMS migration and complete ground up (re)build from ExpressionEngine to Drupal 8 to make things easy for our client. Now GT can edit from any device, anywhere with simple edit tools, drag-and-drop image uploads and real-time previews.