The Tech & Trends Shaping Automotive in 2023

The Tech & Trends Shaping Automotive in 2023

The automotive industry is amid a period of change and challenges. Supply chain issues continue to trouble manufacturers, while dealers face rising costs and a growing regulatory landscape. Meanwhile, the industry appears to be in transition toward a bigger focus on electric vehicles (EVs), digitalization, and a mix of other technological innovations, making it hard for some companies and consumers to keep up.

In this blog post, we will highlight the answer to this exact question and how this is similar to other disruptions we have seen in the past – think Nokia and Apple.

The Top Tech Disruptors

The automotive industry is at a crossroads where the vehicle itself and consumer experiences are rapidly transitioning from physical to digital. More and more, consumers are shopping online to educate themselves, compare features and prices and also make the major investment of purchasing totally online. To capitalize on these disruptions, automakers will need to shift from their conventional, disconnected, and analog manufacturing methods to a connected and digitized environment.

Strict Regulations: New regulations and testing approvals are pushing traditional automakers to acquire or collaborate with innovative autonomous start-ups. For instance, many states and localities, such as the EPA and the California Air Resources Board, have upped their emissions standards, which immediately impacts your bottom line. In addition, the kinds of vehicles that can be designed to reduce emissions will be costly both in time and money. These incentives will further push manufacturers to include more electric and hybrid cars in their fleets and set the stage for rapid competitive consolidation. In other words, strap up because there’s a massive disruption ahead, and Tesla is winning the race. Consumers need to know the total cost of long term ownership of these vehicles and how it also impacts their bottom line.

Batteries and Motors: The most prominent disruptive trend has to be the innovations in the past couple of years in battery and motor technology. Lithium batteries and electric motors are not a new concept or technology; however, they, along with electric motors, will soon become products every company will try to recreate a better version of, almost like the individual parts of smartphones or PCs. Customers are more likely to look at who makes the best batteries than who brought about the use of lithium batteries. In around a decade, Tesla could own 15% of worldwide EV battery production, which will only give a minor competitive advantage. Likewise consumers need to know the value and life of these new batteries and motors–but how do they learn?

Increased cutting-edge production: Modern technologies are reshaping how the automobile industry manufactures cars. One such breakthrough technology is 3D printing to make vehicle parts. Additive manufacturing or 3D printing is an excellent source of product innovation. Metal 3D printing is already becoming mainstream, and this is just the beginning of what is to come in the automotive industry.

Augmented reality: Auto giant Toyota has joined forces with some digital transformation companies to create an augmented reality system that requires no mobile application and enables consumers to get to know the car models without even setting foot in the brand showroom. Using VR capabilities, auto companies can allow consumers to see inside and outside their potential new model and hear authentic sound effects with 360 degrees. Even on websites like TrueCar and Edmunds, all pertinent buying information is available in a second and at the click of a button. Another AR innovation that will take consumers by storm is displaying information on windshields. This technological safety advancement will allow drivers to process important data without taking their eyes off the road.

Internet on things (IoT): Used to describe the ever-growing networks of physical objects that are online, connected, and capable of communicating and sharing information with us and with each other. The total number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices is projected to surpass 43 billion by 2023. As a result, enterprises have begun to adapt to this growing imperative for connectivity, from our homes to smart TVs, connected kitchen appliances, smart alarm systems, and more. The number of businesses deploying IoT technologies has nearly doubled in less than a decade. Still, the pace of past evolution doesn’t compare to what we’ll see in the near future, especially in the automotive industry.

EV pay-per-mile vehicles: We expect companies that develop new, innovative pay-per-mile users-based models, especially in the commercial vehicles and buses space, to attract huge investments. Even during the most challenging periods of the pandemic, EV start-ups continued to pull in sizable funding investments. By showing us carbon-free ways to transform how people and goods are transported, backed by low CAPEX and lifecycle total cost of ownership models, they have put themselves in a position of strength.

Software Integration: Another significant disruption to the auto industry is Tesla and how it’s proving its autonomy of innovations to be the best in the industry. For instance, they are responsible for creating a single integrated computer system that controls their vehicles. Creating a system designed by the combination of separate incompatible computer systems from different suppliers could revolutionize the way Tesla and other companies who want to keep up with this competitive advantage build their products. In addition, Tesla is trying to perfect its Autopilot system to make it the best in the field; however other companies, such as Waymo, are already expanding self-driving cars to public transit. So the question is, how well does your autonomy need to be? How many companies could achieve that? Not to mention that data systems are changing daily, and every innovation must adapt to them, making it hard to keep up.

Evolving Customer Behavior

Current ecological, social, and technological trends are encouraging innovative manufacturers to offer consumers something much more than a typical metal box powered by engines. Carmakers are also showing interest in making good cars on the road and an enclosed space with high-end technology. For many years, carmakers were primarily focused on enhancing manufacturing to become more efficient at scale; the future is about redefining the role of the vehicle.

Consumers are looking for environmentally-friendly vehicles: People’s quest to search for environmentally-friendly cars is increasing. Green earth is a new concept that is attracting wide attention. Moreover, recent wildfires and glacier melting incidents have triggered people to focus on climate change. Henceforth, people look for electric vehicles (EVs) to minimize carbon emissions.

Demand for luxury/premium: Take trucks here as an example. Most people used to associate trucks with off-roading and rugged work, but those are assumptions of the past. Over the years, trucks have become more than that, with consumers preferring to buy luxury and power trucks as a status symbol. In addition to power, luxury trucks have features like extra towing capabilities, spacious seating, panoramic sunroof, rear-seat touchscreen entertainment, advanced safety features, and motorized tailgate and running boards that maximize comfort and style.

Spike in millennial purchasing habits: ​​While many think millennials are not buying cars, the data available tells a different story. In the first quarter of 2018 alone, millennials accounted for all new car sales growth in the Northern American auto industry, with a 6.45% growth in the same period. This statistic has drastically increased since then, as more millennials buy cars when triggered by life-changing events such as switching jobs, getting married, or having children. Consider this statistic when marketing and focus targeted messaging on this segment.

Consumers doing online research: Buying a car is not a task most consumers look forward to, as it can be stressful and time-consuming. Still, since mobile phones have become a part of everyday life, it is easy to look for everything online, vehicles included. A report unravels that eight in ten car buyers use online sources as part of their vehicle purchase process. Moreover, of all online resources, automotive marketplaces are the most popular source used by 77% of new and used buyers. Insert Carvana, who jumped on this opportunity and changed the customer experience by giving power back to customers and letting them find their perfect car from their homes without having to haggle with salespeople. Online does not only mean a Chat bot feature but a real person and toll-free number to connect with for a better experience.

Disdain for the Retail Experience

For most people, buying a car is the second-biggest purchase they will make in life. And while it’s an exciting milestone, many also find it to be full of anxiety and time-consuming. And as more and more consumers discover that they can buy a new car (or leasing?) from the comfort of their home – with voluminous information available about vehicles they’re considering – they’re unlikely to ever return to the old way of doing business. The ability to negotiate with multiple dealers simultaneously without the pressure of the showroom and the time spent going from dealer to dealer will likely become an expectation. Dealerships that adapt will thrive, while those that don’t, will suffer.

How to adapt to DTC purchasing behavior

Unfortunately, no silver bullet can overcome the traditional automotive purchase model. However, there are still significant opportunities for automobile marketers to get up to speed with direct-to-consumer automotive in incremental ways:

  1. One significant DTC opportunity is selling aftermarket parts, which offers big margins and comes directly from the manufacturer.
  2. End-user services related to data connectivity or insurance and financing provider, may provide other possibilities.
  3. Replicating showrooms and sales interactions online.

The digital transformation of some aspects of the buying process is a starting point for building and sustaining connections directly with consumers.

The Future of Car Retail

As the world has already approached digital transformation, the automotive industry is increasingly making technological breakthroughs to stay relevant in today’s competitive landscape. From autonomous vehicles to connected cars and augmented reality dashboard displays to full integration with phones and smartwatches, the automotive industry is on the cusp of innovation, delivering users an enhanced automotive car experience.

When it comes to this experience, Tesla and Carvana stand on top. Why are customers so fanatic about these brands? Is it their sleek design, innovative delivery features, or eco-friendly nature? It is all those things and the forward-thinking, innovative individuality they provide to their customers; which often leads to incredible loyalty and growth. Let’s dive a bit deeper into this.

The hallmark of Tesla’s personalization efforts is its driver profiles. Each driver can change their settings with the single push of a button. For example, instead of manually adjusting things like the wheel and mirror location, Tesla vehicles can make those changes automatically based on who is driving. Other manufacturers may change the seat location setting based on which key is used to open the car door, but Tesla driver profiles go beyond typical car personalization to adjust things like suspension, braking, lights, radio presets, and even driving style to match each user.

Carvana also has a competitive advantage because they meet its customers where they are and provide a solution to one major consumer pain point. They replaced consumers’ time-consuming car dealership visits with a virtual experience. Using their patented 360-degree photo technology, they captured vehicle details from every angle, allowing consumers to browse for a car and explore its features and any imperfections directly from their website or app. And they don’t stop there. They provide customers with the option to either pick up their car or have it delivered to their home. A great option for ecommerce business local or long distance to have this choice based on where they are and how quickly needed.

Simply put, both of these manufacturers have a solid understanding of who their customers are. By understanding each customer, what they are looking for in a driving experience, and why they decided to shop with them, both companies can tailor the experience and change how the car drives to best meet their needs. For instance, a busy professional with a long commute will have different needs and, therefore, a different driving experience than a mom driving her kids around town. In addition, by staying in tune with data, Tesla and Carvana can regularly update their digital offerings, finetune their software and build experiences and features that resonate with each user.

Bringing it all together

As you can see, the decade ahead is going to be very interesting and exciting for the automotive industry, and for you as well. And we’ve only scratched the surface of all of the new developments occurring and forthcoming. Maybe we’ll see Google, Samsung, or Apple enter the market in the future. Maybe cars will begin gathering data on traffic conditions, air quality, and the weather.

Are you ready to capitalize on these disruptions and shift your current manufacturing and customer sales methods to increase your capital and gain a competitive advantage? Schedule a call with a member of our team today.

    Get expert help today!

    An InteractOne Senior Team Member will get back to you within a day.

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    Phone (USA): (513) 469-3362

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    The Focus & Future of the Automotive Aftermarket

    The Focus & Future of the Automotive Aftermarket

    We’re all used to self-service on the web, whether it’s managing our own finances or booking a flight or a holiday. Why can’t it be the same for car parts?

    According to the SEMA 2022 Future Trends report, electric vehicles, connected cars, and eCommerce, among other trends, may lead to the redistribution of 30 to 40 percent of aftermarket profits along the value chain and change the industry landscape in the next 10 to 20 years.

    With an increase in demand for aftermarket parts, many retailers are taking a hard look at their ability to meet the demand and provide the experience their customers are craving – convenience, extensive product selection, consistent availability, and fast delivery. To meet this demand, many retailers have a web store in place, but it’s commonplace that those sites were built years ago and may not have been set up to handle the increased inventory options and transaction volume that the current eCommerce environment demands. If you are not offering a seamless experience from browse to search to purchase, you risk being left behind. Now is the time for you and your team to face the facts: What are we doing to provide a better eCommerce experience?

    In this blog post, we will discuss some of the key factors that are contributing to aftermarket parts success and how you and your team can be strategic in maintaining a competitive position in a rapidly-changing environment.

    Key Factors Contributing to Aftermarket Parts Success

    Dramatic changes are in motion within the automotive aftermarket. These include changing customer expectations, accelerated adoption of new technologies, and shifts in competitive power.

    Automotive aftermarket eCommerce retailers are seeing growth on just about every front. Why? There are not enough new vehicles to meet consumer demand, according to SEMA. Not surprisingly, this means more and more people are keeping their vehicles and spending more of their money maintaining them.

    But that’s not all bad news, as this provides retailers the opportunity to increase their bottom line and take advantage of this aftermarket acceleration. Let’s explore some of the key factors contributing to this rise in reliance on aftermarket parts and services.

    • Low auto inventory levels: New-vehicle inventory at the end of July was higher than it was a year ago, when the global computer chip shortage began hurting production, but supply remains low compared with pre-pandemic times, according to Cox Automotive’s analysis of Auto Available Inventory data. In addition, domestic production of new motor vehicles in the United States was down 16.5% from 2019 according to SEMA. Vehicle sales over the same period were down 9.6%, which has led to historically low inventory.  People have reported waiting on an average of six or more months to receive their new vehicle. Low inventory levels likely mean demand for new vehicles will remain strong over the next year, as auto manufacturers work to repair supply chains and produce more vehicles.
    • The rise in technological advancements: Aftermarket parts such as catalytic converters and electronic chips are in high demand as owners invest in their older vehicles trying to make them more fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly. In addition, people are always on the lookout for new features to add to their older vehicles.
    • Government regulations: Stricter car emission regulations have put pressure on manufacturers to produce more environmentally friendly and high-efficiency parts.  This demand is expected to excel at a fast pace in the future and is a trend to stay on top of.
    • More disposable income: More people are self-made millionaires, demanding more luxuries, including wanting to design or remodel their vehicles, which is increasing the demand for aftermarket products.

    Overall, aftermarket retailers should feel optimistic about the future. The strong demand for aftermarket products will continue to grow in 2022 and beyond. However, challenges loom on the horizon. Ongoing supply issues will likely constrain available supply and increase prices.

    What’s next for your business and retailers alike?

    Many retailers are taking a hard look at their ability to provide a better online buying experience for their customers and asking themselves some tough questions such as:

    1. Are we prepared to handle increased online sales? 
    2. Can our current technology help us stay on top of the supply chain issues?
    3. Is our existing store technology a problem?

    This hasn’t stopped consumers from making a purchase. Shoppers simply switched brands or went to another retailer to get what they needed. What does this mean for you? Don’t let technology get in the way of your business and profits.

    Side Note: According to the SEMA report, nearly ⅔’s of people reported they wanted to purchase something from an online auto aftermarket retailer, but it was out of stock.

    Let’s take a look at how you can get ahead of issues like this with eCommerce:

    • Extend your geographical reach: Whether you sell parts B2C, B2B, or both, eCommerce extends your geographical reach and provides your customers with 24×7 access to place orders. Fully integrating third-party codes where customers can view their complete purchase history and status of current orders from anywhere, anytime is just the beginning of building your customer base beyond your brick and mortar.
    • Improve customer experience: Elevate the buying experience by allowing customers to manage parts and pricing while having immediate access to inventory. 

    Get professional help updating your eCommerce site: InteractOne offers full-service website custom design and deployment, using Magento. Take a look at how we helped turn a static automotive aftermarket site into a responsive, custom-designed one and how we can do the same for you.

    Bringing it all Together

    With the accelerating growth of eCommerce – which creates opportunities to modify business models and adopt new ways of interacting with customers – automotive suppliers and distributors face increased pressure to transform now. How come? Retail giants are quick to fill gaps and expand their footprint into new industries like automotive. But the one thing the big retailers can’t match is the automotive experience and expertise of companies that are already established and successful in the industry – this is where you and your team can gain a strategic advantage with FitmentPro.

    FitmentPro is our solution to gaining this automotive advantage. Not only will this software tool help keep your automotive catalog up to date with the aftermarket trends, but it will also empower your customers to find the perfect part in record time and so much more. Click here to learn more and book a demo with a member of our Dev team today. You’ll be blown away when you see how this feature can help your site perform at top speed while serving the product catalog search results for your customers.

      Get expert help today!

      An InteractOne Senior Team Member will get back to you within a day.

      Drop Us a Line At:

      Our Contact Form

      Or, if you prefer an old-fashioned phone call:
      Phone (USA): (513) 469-3362

      250 East Fifth Street 15th Floor PMB 664
      Cincinnati, OH 45202

      The Future Is Electric – What the Electric Car Revolution Means for Automotive Aftermarket Websites

      The Future Is Electric – What the Electric Car Revolution Means for Automotive Aftermarket Websites

      Edgy analysts have been heralding the death of the internal combustion engine for decades, yet gasoline cars keep chugging along with ever more efficiency. Nevertheless, all good rides must come to an end, and it seems like the conventional internal combustion car is finally being overtaken on the highway by the almighty electric vehicle (EV).

      Millions of electric cars are already on the road, and sales are predicted to surpass 220 million by 2030. The good news for automotive ecommerce stores is that EVs still burn through a lot of consumable components, and they accept many of the same aftermarket upgrades that your store probably already sells to so-called petrol heads. All you have to do is shake up your inventory and marketing strategies a bit to cater to EV drivers.

      Maintenance Parts: Say Goodbye to Engine Oil and Ignition Coils

      Oil changes are undoubtedly the most common car maintenance procedure. As such, engine oil and oil filters are among the best sellers for a lot of aftermarket shops. Unfortunately, electric cars require neither of those consumables.

      In fact, electric cars run without a lot of the maintenance items that you’re probably used to selling. Air intake filters, spark plugs and ignition components, transmission and differential fluids, manifold gaskets, catalytic converters…powering a vehicle with electricity makes all of those components obsolete.

      While EVs may drive differently than internal combustion engines they still need to stop. EVs do require brake maintenance components like pads, rotors, and brake fluid, though maintenance will be less frequent than their gasoline counterparts due to regenerative braking technology. Tires, cabin air filters, and car cleaning accessories will all still be fair game also.

      As for the powertrain – electric motors and batteries require very little maintenance unless they’re damaged or worn out from extremely high mileage. When either of those things happen, the cost and complexity of the repairs generally necessitate a specialized technician.

      In other words, driveway mechanics purchasing maintenance parts to install at home will be a much smaller demographic.

      Powertrain Upgrades: Out with Hardware, In with Software

      Unfortunately, pretty much all of the traditional aftermarket engine upgrades are off the table as well. Cold-air intakes, performance exhaust systems, turbo system components…any upgrade that bolts onto the engine will be incompatible with electric powertrains.

      Some new potential mods are entering the market though in the form of software packages. Tesla already offers different software tunes to suit different performance targets, including their famous “Ludicrous” mode that temporarily amps up the Model S’s power output for straight-line sprints and drag races. Aftermarket tuners are already getting in the game too, such as Genovation with their custom electric power train swaps and tuning products. Less extensive software modifications are also possible, such as artificial engine notes that play through the car’s audio system as the driver accelerates.

      No matter how complex electric cars and their computer systems become, there will always be an aftermarket engineer somewhere finding ways to squeeze more power and sportiness out of them. Whether they do so using a wrench or keyboard, you’ll still have a performance product to add to your digital shelves.

      Electric Cars Can Still Dance with Handling Upgrades

      Automotive technology may continuously evolve, but physics stays the same. If you want to modify a car to go around a turn faster, you lower the center of gravity, stiffen the chassis and suspension, then wrap the wheels in sticky tires. Electric motors don’t prohibit any of those upgrades.

      Performance driving enthusiasts and weekend racers will still be in the market for mods that improve driving dynamics and handling. In fact, the market for chassis and suspension upgrades may even grow as enthusiasts have less options to inject performance and personality into their engines and transmissions.

      Good Looks Never Go Away

      When it comes to aftermarket suspension upgrades, handling improvements are only half the story. There are just as many enthusiasts who purchase performance lowering springs and shocks simply for the low-profile stance of the upgraded suspension. 

      Aftermarket wheel sets go hand in hand with lowered suspension setups. From there, the sky’s the limit when it comes to aftermarket aesthetic modifications. Sporty bumpers and ground effects, custom hoods and headlights, along with the increasingly-popular trend of custom vinyl graphics and full exterior vinyl wraps are what enthusiasts will use to make their electric cars scream rather than a set of unmuffled exhaust pipes.

      Hot-Rodding Is Forever

      People have been modifying their rides since the invention of the wheel. Speed addicts in the 19th century were figuring out ways to cram more heat into their steam engines, wealthy ancient Egyptians and Europeans rode around in tricked-out chariots – it’s absurd to think that driving enthusiasts will suddenly lose the itch to tinker with their cars once they’re powered by electrons instead of gasoline.


      The challenge is simply keeping yourself and your automotive store up to date with the aftermarket trends that will lead the way into the future of electric hot-rodding. For assistance with keeping your auto webstore tuned to the changing marketplace, please feel free to reach out to us.

      May 2021 Automotive Orange Report

      May 2021 Automotive Orange Report

      May 2021 Automotive ORANGE REPORT

      The May 2021 Automotive Orange Report features our best & most recent blogs and guides on Magento, Big Commerce, eCommerce, and Digital Marketing.

      Orange Report Logo


      Everything you need to know about eCommerce, digital marketing, and Magento.

      UPDATED: Three Susceptible Demos to Target with Your Auto Aftermarket Campaign

      This blog was a hit with our Automotive audience but it has some excellent research lessons that extend to other industries too. Check it out. 

      Chassis Codes 101: An Integral Spec for Automotive Aftermarket Web Stores

      One very important (and potentially lucrative) spec is missing from most automotive product listings: the chassis codes of compatible vehicles.

      Subject Line Tactics Proven to Get Your Emails Opened & Read

      When sent to your existing audience, emails can increase exposure, brand loyalty and sales. But how can you ensure these emails actually get opened?

      Dropshipping Primer and How Shopify and BigCommerce Perform

      Dropshipping is an order fulfillment method that uses a third-party supplier to ship goods sold by a retailer, avoiding the costs associated with a warehouse and a brick and mortar storefront. But how does it work on Shopify and Big Commerce?

      How to Diagnose and Solve Bounce Rate Issues on Your Automotive Aftermarket Site

      How to Diagnose and Solve Bounce Rate Issues on Your Automotive Aftermarket Site

      Traditionally, bounce rates in the automotive aftermarket world may have referred to hydraulic suspension kits on low-rider cars, or the spring rate curves on a set of coil-overs. Nowadays, automotive web stores have a different bounce rate to consider: the rate at which users “bounce” off of your page immediately. 

      Put simply, high bounce rates are bad: every bounced user is a potential customer that is lost back into cyberspace, likely to search engine page results (SERPs) that link to your biggest competitors. You also get hit with SEO penalties that lower your page ranking.

      Use this guide to identify the issues causing your automotive web store to have a high bounce rate, fix the problems, and keep your traffic from flowing straight down the road of Google to your competitors’ sites. If you need more of a primer on bounce rates in general, check out our Bounce Rates 101 blog


      Solving the Most Common Bounce Rate Issues in Automotive Ecommerce

      Naturally, aftermarket automotive sites are subject to all of the usual bounce rate rules as discussed in our aforementioned 101 blog. However, there are also some common issues that tend to plague automotive shops specifically.

      Incorrect Part Numbers

      The Problem

      Many shoppers find parts numbers on OEM and aftermarket manufacturer websites, then copy-paste those numbers into Google. (It’s way more convenient than trying to search by the name of the part and navigating a myriad of filter options.) If your product listing doesn’t match the part number anchoring your page, all of those users are going to click their “back” buttons immediately with a bad taste in their mouths.

      The Solution

      You’ll have to open up the hood of your website and get the correct part numbers posted. Double-check the parts numbers with the ones listed directly on the manufacturers’ sites. If you pull your product information automatically from a database, you should probably look into using a different database before inaccurate product info drags your site down in the SERPs even further.

      Inaccurate Product Images

      The Problem

      An even more common issue is using inaccurate or generic product images. If a user is shopping for a cold-air intake and they see a picture of a catalytic converter pop up, they’re most likely going to bounce regardless of whether or not the rest of the product listing features accurate, quality information.

      The Solution

      It’s not feasible to post a specific image of every single aftermarket component you sell – that would practically be a full-time job just keeping up with a single make and model. Tiny, inexpensive components such as connectors, fasteners, and gaskets are bound to be given generic images.

      However, that’s not the case with your big-ticket items. When a user is shopping for a $1,000 exhaust system or a $2,000 set of wheels, they definitely want to see multiple unique, high-quality images of the product before they make a purchase. They certainly don’t want to see a generic press image of their vehicle, much less an image of a completely different component.

      Update the pictures with high-resolution images straight from the manufacturer’s website, or if you have the product on hand, snap a few unique photos of it yourself. That’ll go a long way to keeping users on the product page, as well as improving the overall quality and authority of your website. has a great example of this. 

      Sold Out or Discontinued Parts

      The Problem

      Online shoppers are generally an impatient bunch. If they’re searching Google for a specific aftermarket car part, it’s probably because they’re ready to make a purchase. If the product in your listing is sold out or discontinued, those shoppers are likely going to bounce in frustration.

      The Solution

      There are a few things you can do if you can’t get a product stocked. One option is to update the listing to prominently feature related products from other brands that fit the same make and model – that will potentially keep the user shopping on your page and encourage them to look into other products.

      If it’s a highly searched product that has a lot of traffic bouncing off your site, you can try addressing those users directly with a short written post at the top of the product page. Explain the reason for the out-of-stock status – put it in the manufacturer’s court by saying you’re actively working with them to get the product restocked.

      For discontinued products, apologize to shoppers and explain when and why the product was discontinued – the idea is that you want them to realize the product will be unavailable to buy from your competitors before they click their “back” buttons. Then, put together a curated list of related products with images that link directly to the product pages. Napa Online has a great example of this. 

      Putting a Damper on Bounce Rates

      Chasing down the source of bounce rate issues can feel like a game of Whack-A-Mole – you resolve one page, get the traffic flowing, then out of nowhere another page is repelling search users like a trampoline.

      If you want a more comprehensive and permanent solution, or you simply need help exorcising a particularly stubborn bounce rate demon, let the experts at InteractOne take a look under the hood of your website. We’ll resolve any issues and optimize your content along the way so your site has the horsepower advantage in the race against your competitors.

        Get expert help today!

        An InteractOne Senior Team Member will get back to you within a day.

        Drop Us a Line At:

        Our Contact Form

        Or, if you prefer an old-fashioned phone call:
        Phone (USA): (513) 469-3362

        250 East Fifth Street 15th Floor PMB 664
        Cincinnati, OH 45202

        Chassis Codes 101: Integral Spec for Automotive Aftermarket

        Chassis Codes 101: Integral Spec for Automotive Aftermarket

        The organizational structure of your product catalog is the backbone of your eCommerce store. After all, it’s pretty difficult to sell products if your customers can’t search for and/or find them. What that means for your store is that you need to categorize your product listings in every relevant way possible to ensure that your shoppers don’t come up empty-handed when they’re browsing for a component.

        Every competent aftermarket automotive shop has that functionality built in with products categorized by vehicle year, make, and model. However, one very important (and potentially lucrative) spec is missing from most automotive product listings: the chassis codes of compatible vehicles. In this guide we’ll break down the need for Chassis Codes and how to incorporate them into your automotive aftermarket website.

        What Are Chassis Codes?

        Essentially, a chassis code is like a meta description of a vehicle. It designates what chassis a car is built upon, which is often shared across numerous models and makes. For example, the LX chassis platform owned by Chrysler was used by the Chrysler 300, Dodge Magnum, and Dodge Charger produced from 2005 to 2010 – two brands and three models built for five years, but only a single chassis code.

        If you want a more in-depth crash course on chassis codes, Speedhunters has a great write-up including a lot of the most common models that car enthusiasts will be shopping for by chassis. And Active Auto shows a great example of Chassis Codes. 

        Why Do Customers Shop By Chassis Code?

        The main reason customers search for aftermarket parts by chassis code is simply that it’s easier. Instead of repeatedly typing in the year, make, model, and trim of their vehicles – keywords which often aren’t even featured on product listings – shoppers simply type a two- to four-digit chassis number.

        Another reason shoppers turn to chassis codes is that product listings often don’t include every model of compatible vehicle. In many cases that would be impossible – some components would have to feature sprawling lists of dozens of models to include every compatible year and trim level.

        On the other hand, a single chassis code keyword can give shoppers all of that same compatibility information without having to scroll through endless lists.

        How to Incorporate Chassis Codes into Your Web Store

        Here’s where things can get a bit tricky. Most likely, all of the meta data for the products featured on your store is scraped from supplier databases. That means you’ll have to wade into the back end of your website to automatically update your listings and include chassis codes Magento or BigCommerce product attributes are useful when mapping chassis codes and vehicle qualifiers to products because you can set specific attributes to display on the product pages, be searchable in the site search and filterable from category pages. However, that’s just the first step – you still need to create content to help rank for those searched chassis terms and show customers you’re relevant and reputable in the industry. 

        Luckily, there’s an easy way to take advantage of this marketing solution with some hands-on content:

        1.  Identify a number of vehicles and compatible chassis codes that you want to target with your marketing.

        2. Create a separate page or blog post dedicated to each chassis code.

        3. Make the pages SEO-friendly and include a relevant H1 title. For example, “A List of Upgrades Compatible with the Chrysler LX Platform”.

        4. Write some brief, keyword-rich content that is relevant to the chassis code. Mention vehicle years, makes, models, and trim levels that fall under the chassis code to make your content even more searchable.

        5. Include a list of compatible components that you sell arranged by category. You don’t have to include every part you offer, but be sure to highlight your best sellers and highest margin products.

        A. Mapping chassis codes to products can make this a breeze, and automate lists as you update product data.

        6. Share those pages via social media, email them to target segments of customers you know have those vehicles and try distributing those links to suppliers or enthusiasts to link back to your site now that you’ve created a valuable reference resource.

        7.  Repeat the process for every chassis code you want to target.


        When you’re finished, you’ll have a repository of relevant, SEO-friendly pages for shoppers to land on for years to come whenever they type their vehicle chassis codes into Google. That should help you scoop up a ton of new customers even without making back-end changes to your product categories and databases.

        Of course, if you do want to go all-out and optimize your product listings to increase sales volume and user experience – or if you merely need help creating quality chassis code content and marketing it properly – Interact One has your back.

        UPDATED: Three Susceptible Demos to Target with Your Auto Aftermarket Campaign

        UPDATED: Three Susceptible Demos to Target with Your Auto Aftermarket Campaign

        Whether you run an international OEM parts store or a boutique automotive lifestyle brand, chances are you could use a few more customers. We’ve identified and researched some potentially lucrative demographics that, while not necessarily automotive-focused, are quite susceptible to purchasing car parts and accessories if properly motivated and marketed to effectively.

        While there are a number of ways to determine which unique demographics to target (stay tuned for an in-depth guide on that subject in the coming weeks), we’re focusing on three niches that are underdeveloped and, with the right marketing focus, could provide your ecommerce brand with an influx of new and loyal customers.

        DIY Enthusiasts

        DIY activities of all shapes and sizes are on the rise for a number of reasons. For one, building and maintaining things by hand saves money and reduces waste – both of which are economically in fashion these days. DIY car maintenance is no exception

        Add in the economic uncertainty due to the  Coronavirus event, and now you have a ton of new consumers who are invested in gear and workspaces for home DIY projects. If those consumers aren’t already doing maintenance on their cars at home, they’re definitely susceptible to the idea. Maybe it’s your automotive store’s next digital campaign that gets them turning the wrenches.

        Why Market Your Automotive Store to DIY Enthusiasts?  

        It’s right there in the title: “do it yourself.” DIY Enthusiasts are folks who generally enjoy working with their hands, figuring things out, and being self-sufficient. Compared to the average driver, they’ll be much more likely to read or watch a how-to guide, then buy maintenance items for their cars and install them at home.

        How to Market to DIYers

        Focus on a specific benefit of DIYing with each separate campaign you run.

        • For the environmentally-minded DIY demographic, highlight stats and sentiments about reducing their carbon footprint by maintaining their vehicle and keeping it out of the junkyard. Some routes to consider: stats on increased engine life and efficiency due to quality synthetic oil and filters; the most current stats on the total tonnage of automotive waste in landfills; guides to highlight upgrades that make cars more fuel efficient, or “hypermiling”.
        • For the budget-minded buyer, focus on “lifetime” stats that highlight the amount of money saved over years of home maintenance as opposed to paying for dealership maintenance. Compare the average price of a new car with the much lower cost of average yearly maintenance, highlighting the amount of money customers are saving in the long run by purchasing your aftermarket parts.
        • For buyers who pride themselves on self-sufficiency and handiwork, capture the spirit of craftsmanship. Show images of proud enthusiasts working on their own cars at home with car parts and tools featured prominently. Juxtapose car maintenance with home maintenance, lawn care, and common household tasks so that the customer sees automotive work as another everyday chore to take pride in rather than an intimidating job that requires a mechanic. Check out how this Pinterest page will walk users through a complicated project.

        Man Cave Dweller

        The Man Cave movement is alive and well. A passive search of Instagram alone for #mancave and you’ll literally find millions of tagged results. Not to mention the myriad of blogs dedicated to brainstorming “man cave” ideas and showcasing unique setups.

        Why Market Your Automotive Store to the Man Cave Crowd?

        Most people build their man caves in the garage. Even if not, the whole spirit of the hobby has its roots in old school facets of masculinity, which individuals in this market tend to value: handiwork, home repair, and car maintenance go hand in hand with the man cave persona. 

        There’s also bound to be a lot of crossover in the demographic that enjoys building customized home garage setups for entertainment purposes and the demographic that enjoys customizing and upgrading their cars.

        The other niche you find lurking in man caves is the tech enthusiast. These folks are more likely to have a custom-built gaming PC lying around than a custom-built engine block. Nevertheless, being tech-minded, DIY capable, and having a home “laboratory” in the garage means they’re much more likely to handle car maintenance at home – even if they have to  load up a YouTube tutorial on their phone while tinkering under the hood.

        How to market to Man Cave Dwellers

        The obvious route is to target the inherently masculine sentiment and bravado of man caves. Feature images of tricked-out home garages stocked to the brim with engine fluids, filters, car detailing gear, etc.

        • For the techy dweller of man caves, show off some cool garage gadgets in your campaign too – digital torque wrenches and calipers, multimeters and ECU tuners wired into engine harnesses, etc. 
        • Another zeitgeist to capture in your campaign is the social nature of man caves. Almost all man caves are designed as cool places in which to hang out – car maintenance is sometimes more or less just the excuse to get together in the garage. Show groups of buddies chatting, laughing, drinking beers, eating burgers, all while gathered around a car on jackstands with your products in full view.
        • A final niche to target is man cave dads who build their garage hangouts as a place to bond with their kids. Obviously the sentiment to go for here is fatherhood – an image showing a proud father helping his son turn a lug wrench, a dad scrambling to get out of the way as his kids wildly spray car wash foam out of a flailing hose, or anything of that nature.

        Car Enthusiast Forums

        Car enthusiasts love their niche forums. Virtually every different vehicle platform has its own dedicated forum where owners post in-depth discussions on maintenance, modifications, and common reliability issues. What better place could there be to advertise your platform-specific aftermarket parts?

        Why Market to Users on Car Enthusiast Forums?

        This one’s pretty self-evident. They own the cars that your parts fit, they’re enthusiastic about said cars to the point that they join social circles based on them, and they’re much more likely to buy aftermarket upgrades and DIY maintenance parts than the average driver.

        How to Market on Car Enthusiast Forums

        Most car forums allow sponsored vendors to market products to their users. You go through a vetting process, pay an advertising fee, then you get to post your products and promotions directly on the forums.

        Making your store a sponsored vendor can be a boon to selling aftermarket upgrade components. Users will be salivating for their upgrades while reading installation guides and browsing pictures of other users’ vehicles on the forum, so you want your products to be easily within their digital reach. Alternatively, you can use Google Ads and grassroots methods to target these shoppers less directly.


        Users on car enthusiast forums have turned their vehicles into a hobby and passion, so they’ll be more susceptible to lifestyle marketing that connects with their love for their cars. Due to the cost and complexity of performing extensive aftermarket modifications, enthusiasts also tend to plan out their upgrade purchases weeks or months in advance. That means they’re likely to cross shop and be very price sensitive, but also susceptible to discount campaigns and promo codes.

        To learn more about how your automotive brand can begin to target susceptible markets to grow your business, contact us today.

        April 2021 Automotive Aftermarket Orange Report

        April 2021 Automotive Aftermarket Orange Report

        April 2021 ORANGE REPORT

        The April 20201 Orange Report features our best & most recent blogs and guides on Magento, Big Commerce, eCommerce, and Digital Marketing.

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        Everything you need to know about eCommerce, digital marketing, and Magento.

        Open Source eCommerce: Weighing the Pros & Cons

        In Part 2 of our Saas & Open Source series we examine Open Source Platforms and how they are unique built to power your eCommerce business.

        UPDATED: Image Search Engine Optimization 101 for the Automotive Aftermarket

        Unique, quality images are integral to your automotive web store. But how to get your images in front of the eyes of potential customers when your competitors doing the same thing?

        Slipping Sales: Six Steps to Fix your Cart and Reduce Abandonment

        First, identify why customers are abandoning their carts in the first place. Start by analyzing your web store’s checkout process…


        A Primer for a Successful Digital Marketing Campaign

        Dropshipping is an order fulfillment method that uses a third-party supplier to ship goods sold by a retailer, avoiding the costs associated with a warehouse and a brick-and-mortar storefront. But how does it work on Shopify and Big Commerce?

        UPDATED: Image Search Engine Optimization 101 for the Automotive Aftermarket

        UPDATED: Image Search Engine Optimization 101 for the Automotive Aftermarket

        What’s the first thing that shoppers look for when considering a new aftermarket upgrade for their cars? Pictures, usually. More specifically, pictures featured on platforms like Google Images, Instagram, and Pinterest. 

        Whether it’s aftermarket modifications or DIY maintenance components, modern automotive shoppers generally do their research online. As noted by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) in a meta analysis, automotive aftermarket “shopping starts with an inspiration, which for this generation begins online.” Browsing images of cars similar to their own is what “stirs their emotions and encourages them to formulate dreams.” In other words, they want to see their car “trying on” the component before they make a purchase.

        There’s no doubting that unique, quality images are integral to your automotive web store. The challenge is getting your images in front of the eyes of potential customers when all of your competitors are trying to do the same thing.

        In that regard, the journey to maximizing the visibility of your images across platforms – and using that visibility to boost traffic to your website – begins with some proper SEO and image optimization. For a great example of product images, check out Putco’s webstore

        Compress to Conserve Data

        Google doesn’t like it when you waste users’ bandwidth – especially mobile users, who are often restricted by monthly data caps from their ISPs. Taking a large image and simply shrinking it down via HTML tags only changes the appearance of the image. The same unnecessarily large file is still loaded on users’ devices, it’s simply displayed smaller on their screens.

        That creates a couple of problems. For one, Google’s algorithm notices those oversized image files wasting data and dings your site for not being optimized. Secondly, larger files equal longer load times, which Google also penalizes. Having your website populated with unnecessarily large image files can even make it hang up or freeze on some users’ devices, hitting you with the third and final blow of an increased bounce rate.

        Create Relevant File Names

        It’s only a small bump in SEO friendliness, but every bump counts. Edit the image file names on your server to something unique and relevant. For example, you might name an image of a chrome wheel something like “20_inch_mag_wheel_chrome.jpg” instead of the random string of characters that it’s named by default.

        Those relevant keywords in the file name give search engines another opportunity to properly categorize and rank your images. Furthermore, it makes them more user-friendly: users who open your images in new browser tabs or download them will be met with a nice, descriptive file name.

        Write Unique and Descriptive ALT Tags

        ALT tags give you yet another opportunity to sprinkle your images with some SEO- and user-friendliness. Essentially, the whole purpose of an ALT tag is to describe the content of an image for algorithms as well as visually-impaired users. Make sure all of your images have brief, relevant ALT tags peppered with some of the keywords your page is targeting.

        Combining the descriptive file name and ALT tag, you’re left with a nice SEO-friendly image tag that looks like this:

        Surround the Images with Relevant Text

        Of course, in the end it all comes down to content. No amount of optimization will propel your site and web images to the top of search results if the written content isn’t unique, relevant, and well-executed.

        When it comes to images, the page text will further help search algorithms categorize and rank you by subject and quality. For example, an image of a chrome wheel could appear on an automotive aftermarket web store, a bicycle shop, a page offering Google Chrome icon packs, etc. It’s the text on the page in the vicinity of the image – most notably the caption – that tells algorithms what they’re looking at. Below, you’ll see a great example of this:


        Once you get all of your web images compressed, optimized, and placed correctly for SEO purposes, you’ll have a solid foundation from which to build platform-specific image marketing strategies. Create unique, high-quality images, tag and market them effectively on Google and social media, then you’ll really have a leg up on your competitors’ stores when shoppers go browsing on their favorite image platforms for some automotive inspiration. Reach out to us today and let’s discuss how to make this magic happen on your own automotive eCommerce site. Check out our DualLiner case study too. 

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          March 2021 Automotive Aftermarket Orange Report

          March 2021 Automotive Aftermarket Orange Report

          March 2021 ORANGE REPORT

          The March 20201 Orange Report features our best & most recent blogs and guides on Magento, Big Commerce, eCommerce, and Digital Marketing. 

          Orange Report Logo


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          SaaS eCommerce: Weighing the Pros & Cons

          In Part 1 of our Saas & Open Source series we examine Saas Platforms and how they are unique built to power your eCommerce business.

          7 Simple A/B Tests to Improve Your Automotive eCommerce Site

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