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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.—Purcell Tire & Rubber Co. has launched an automotive online marketplace with the help of PageViews Interactive L.L.C., a Scottsdale-based marketing firm specializing in search engine optimization (SEO).

“They've never really taken advantage of the online market,” said Aaron Lewis, PageViews' executive vice president of sales, talking about Purcell Tire's online ventures. “They really wanted to harness that power of the Internet.”

With Purcell's new website, the dealership's customers will be able to schedule brake services, make complete car care appointments and find online information on diagnostics, batteries and tire inflation, according to PageViews.

Purcell wanted to take the initiative to keep growing as a business and that would be an important step to continue in today's technological world, PageViews said.

“We know that if you're going to be in business today you must have a strong online presence,” said Bill Guttery, director of marketing and advertising for Purcell. “The way we look online is how consumers form a perception of our entire company.

“In today's world, if you can't easily be found online, to a large, growing group of consumers, you don't exist,” he said. “We have been a successful growing business since 1936. We have done this by staying ahead of the trends and changing to meet the needs of our customers.”

Purcell said it aims to highlight the consumer car care side of its business with an online marketing campaign with the help of PageViews.

“We started in July. When we started we established a baseline with all the analytics to determine where we stood before any changes,” Mr. Guttery said. “Before we started driving people to our website, we need to make it a good place to go. The first month was spent repairing and improving our website; then we went after the SEO, marketing and social media.”

Purcell chose PageViews after much research to find the right partner. “We took the opportunity to research and interview three different companies before selecting Page-Views. We selected PageViews because they could do it all,” Mr. Guttery said.

“Our website needed to be updated and maintained and they could do that. We needed a strong social media campaign but did not have the staff or knowledge to maintain it and they could do that. We needed a robust SEO plan and they had a strong record of success with that.

“We wanted to expand our pay-per-click marketing presence and they had the tools for that. So instead of working with two or three different companies, we found PageViews could satisfy all our needs with one contact.”

Purcell hopes to create a Web portal that allows consumers and company representatives to interact easily and at the customers' convenience, PageViews said. Working on Purcell's online marketing website, PageViews said it will work to combine the dealership's automotive expertise with proprietary research into consumer search behavior related to car parts and services.

“Every month we have seen substantial improvement in additional visits, appointments made on line, and click (throughs),” Mr. Guttery said. “We have worked with Page-Views to communicate progress and success with our managers through well planned efficient conference calls. We are early in the project, but we do expect our online presence to grow and become a critical part of our future marketing and advertising strategy.”

According to Mr. Lewis, Purcell has had “phenomenal success” so far with the upgraded website.

Founded in 1936, Purcell Tire is a family-owned tire dealership with more than 60 sales locations and six retread plants across the country.

The Potosi, Mo.-based company derives about 14 percent of its annual sales from retail-related activities. That amounted to about $35 million in revenue last year, the company said recently.



To reach this reporter: jkarpus@crain.com; 330-865-6143.
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