I am amazed at how many "industry" specialists there are out there in the SEO world. In prepping for a meeting tomorrow with an auto dealer I did a little searching and found a whole world of "auto dealer SEO" related websites.
Don't get me wrong - some of these sites had really good information and case studies. But at the end of the day the methodology that is producing results is largely the same as it is for just about any other industry.
Constants in the SEO World
No matter what the industry certain things are important if you want to succeed with your online marketing:
1. Well optimized pages on your site - this means taking advantage of page titles and all of the on page factors important to your market segment. If you have a locally oriented business include as much information as you can about local markets or terms that would be of use for potential web users.
2. Importance of link building - While there are endless amounts of advice on the best way to build links, the fact remains that building visibility for your site in directories, blogs, other websites, article banks and news outlets remains important. And this isn't just because Google likes links. It's beacuse people are everywhere online and the more links you have the better your chances are that they will find your site.
3. Identify your target. The car dealer "case studies" drove this home for me. They showed examples of ranking well for "Ford dealer MA" and other sorts of phrases like this. No matter what industry or business you are in you MUST identify the key phrases you want to be found for and work towards those.
4. Search patterns are changing. Google and the other search engines are constantly changing the rules in an effort to provide users with the best results possible. This means that the results people see when they type in a given phrase will vary as time goes by. Being knowledgeable about these changes and adapting as they come is sound advice no matter what industry you are in.