Have you ever thought about posting your auto repair coupons online? If you’ve done even a little bit of research, you’ve probably noticed that few coupon sites accommodate small businesses. Coupons.com, RetailMeNot.com, and the like primarily distribute coupons for consumer packaged goods and big-box retailers. This leaves independent auto repair shops with limited options. So, how do you post auto repair coupons online?
There are a handful of options to get your coupon on the web. We’ll discuss each one, the pros and cons, and how to decide which one is best for your auto repair shop.
What Makes a Great Online Coupon?
To decide where you’ll invest time and effort into online coupon distribution, you need to compare your options. We’ll use four criteria to get a fair comparison:
- Visibility – How will people find your coupon? Will it be easily seen?
- Appeal – Will shoppers want to use your coupon?
- Profitability – Will your shop generate a profit?
- Ease of Use – What kind of skills/knowledge are required to post to the platform?
The Best Platforms to Post Auto Repair Coupons Online
- Google My Business for high visibility
- Groupon for out-of-the-box coupons
- Your Website for overall control
Google My Business
Best Platform for High Visibility
In short, if you’re looking for visibility, you’ll get it with Google My Business.
In 2019, Google added a new feature that allows business owners to add Offers to their Google My Business (GMB) listing. If you’re not familiar with GMB, get on it, stat!
Over a billion people use Google Maps every month, and 46% of those searches seek local information. The cherry on top is that Offers are designed to be highly-visible — appearing near the top of your profile on Google Search and Maps.
Creating a Google My Business profile is free. It doesn’t take a lot of skill, but you may miss the additional steps to verify your listing if you’re not familiar with the process. When it comes to creating the Offer, your coupon will be as appealing and profitable as you make it. A $5 discount on a $100 service will surely be profitable! But will it entice a shopper to choose you over the competition?
The entire experience is self-guided, which means you’ll be responsible for your success (or lack thereof). To ensure you set your campaign up for success, do a quick Google search on creating a Google Maps listing and best practices for making a profitable coupon offer. At the end of the day, the high-visibility will be worth the slight learning curve.
Best Platform for Out-of-the-Box Coupons
Groupon may be the best-known coupon platform for local businesses, but is it the best?
Your auto repair shop will need to create an offer through the Groupon Merchant Center to get listed on the site. The online platform is pretty cool. At nearly every step of the creation process, Groupon makes recommendations and provides templates for you to use. The whole experience is guided, which is great if you want to post a coupon online quickly.
For shoppers to find your coupon, they’ll have to seek out the Groupon website and search for coupons by location, category, or business name.
Once the results load, it’s likely that your coupon will be listed next to auto repair shops of all sizes. I.E., your coupon is competing against well-known brands like Valvoline and Jiffy Lube. This may make it more challenging for your shop to grab shoppers’ attention, especially if those franchises can afford to offer a stronger discount.
Even though it is free to publish a deal on Groupon, generating a profit has notoriously been tough for small businesses. Groupon recommends a 35% – 65% discount on every deal, plus they take a percentage of the sale. To be profitable through Groupon, you’ll need to ensure that every single coupon redeemed brings in a profit.
Again, the main benefit of Groupon is its Merchant Center. Setting up a coupon takes about 30 minutes and requires no prior skills or knowledge. So if you’re confident that your deal will stand out from the crowd and generate a profit on every single transaction, then Groupon is a great option for you!
Best Platform for Overall Control
Yes, your website is an option for posting coupons online! Many larger brands like Christian Brothers Automotive and Firestone list coupons on their website. As shoppers jump from website to website, comparing their options, the accessibility of coupons is likely a deciding factor. By adding coupons to your website, you give new and returning customers greater access to your current promotions.
That being said, your website will have slightly lower visibility than Google My Business and Groupon. Potential customers are more likely to search for you on Google Maps or Search first and then navigate your website.
Like Google My Business Offers, the profitability and appeal of your website coupons are determined by you. Luckily, because it’s your website, you have complete control over what’s posted! You can post separate offers for new vs. returning customers, and change them up as frequently as you wish.
Where Should You Post Auto Repair Coupons Online?
Even though the options for independent auto repair shops are limited, you can still post coupons online using Google My Business, Groupon, and your website. Before investing in one platform or the other, consider their visibility, appeal, profitability, and ease of use. Then, pick the platform that fits best with your advertising strategy.