Automotive Merchandising Tips for Social Media

August 8, 2023

A key question you may ask yourself as a dealership owner is how your business can stand apart from the competition and bring in more customers. Your dealership is likely competing with other dealerships in your area selling similar vehicles. If you don’t differentiate yourself, those competitors will snatch up customers and hurt your bottom line. That’s where automotive merchandising comes into play. 

What Is Automotive Merchandising?

Automotive merchandising is how you display your inventory to catch the attention of potential buyers. Though it may sound simple, getting it right is essential. Strong automotive merchandising can be the difference between a successful dealership and a failing one. One of the key aspects of automotive merchandising is transparency. Potential customers expect and deserve transparency about pricing, vehicle options, mileage, and other details relevant to their purchasing decisions. Car shoppers today overwhelmingly use the internet to research their options before making a purchase. If a customer finds discrepancies between the information your dealership displays online and the information they receive in person, you’re likely to lose them entirely.

The Role of Social Media in Automotive Merchandising

Any point of contact between your dealership and potential customers is part of your automotive merchandising strategy. That includes in-person interactions in your dealership, of course, but also the ads you run, your website, and even your social media pages. Social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok are all valuable avenues for reaching your customers and selling vehicles—in fact, 90% of vehicle buyers who used social media during their decision-making process say it impacted their purchase¹. If you’re not strategically using social media as part of your automotive merchandising, you’re missing out on the potential to attract customers and persuade them to buy from your dealership. 63% of car buyers find vehicles they may purchase online, so don’t neglect this valuable merchandising avenue². 

3 Automotive Social Media Marketing Tips for Your Merchandising Plan

Focus on Telling Stories

Social media users don’t want to consume dull content that looks like an advertisement. Instead, focus on telling stories from your unique brand perspective. People are much more likely—22 times more likely, in fact—to remember facts when you present them as part of a story³. Share stories that provide insights into your brand values and show how your brand is different from other dealerships. Incorporate your vehicle inventory into these stories whenever possible so you’re still promoting your products while sharing engaging content. Consider stories from staff members or customers for a human touch. Hopefully, the message of these stories will stick with potential customers and leave them thinking of your brand when they go to purchase a vehicle. 

Use Multiple Platforms

If you’ve never used social media as part of automotive merchandising before, the prospect of doing so may seem overwhelming. Start small, but don’t limit your dealership to using a single social media site. Being present on several platforms gives you more chances to connect with all your target customers. Dealerships that only use Facebook, for example, miss out on all the customers who don’t use Facebook but are present on other social media sites like Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. These three social media sites are especially popular with Millennials and Gen Z—two groups whose purchasing power will only continue to grow in the coming years⁴. 

Explore Different Types of Content

You may be tempted to simply post pictures and descriptions of your vehicle inventory on your social media sites. While pictures can be very effective, especially when paired with the right descriptions, you should consider posting other types of content as well. Video has exploded in popularity thanks to platforms like TikTok, and dealerships should hop on that trend. An incredible 92% of marketers say video content offers a strong return on investment, so there’s no reason not to try it out⁵. Other forms of content, like text- or audio-based content, can also connect strongly with audiences. Do some trial and error to find which types of content perform best on your social media pages. Often, certain content will perform well on one social media site and not as well on others. That’s why it’s important to use multiple sites.


  1. Wise, L. (21 June 2018). How The Automotive Industry Is Getting Results From Social Media. Social Media Week. Retrieved May 31, 2023, from
  2. Understanding the Auto-Buying Journey of the Connected Consumer. Facebook IQ. Retrieved May 31, 2023, from
  3. Aaker, J. Harnessing the Power of Stories. Stanford University. Retrieved Retrieved May 31, 2023, from
  4. Roberts, J. (27 January 2023). Where Does Gen Z Spend the Majority of Their Time Online? Later. Retrieved May 31, 2023, from
  5. Hayes, A. (6 February 2023). What Video Marketers Should Know in 2023, According to Wyzowl Research. Hubspot. Retrieved May 31, 2023, from