UK Car Leasing Companies - Digital Marketing Benchmark Report, Q1 2024

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The Q1 2024 benchmarking report for UK car leasing companies has just been published. Learn how the top 12 UK car leasing companies perform across the digital space.

The latest Q1 2024 benchmarking report for UK car leasing companies has just been published.  It covers the largest 12 national car leasing companies, including Volkswagen Financial Services, Zenith, Arval, Santander Consumer Finance, Alphabet, Lex Autolease, Kinto, Tusker, Novuna, ALD Automotives, Arnold Clark, and Leasys. Car Leasing Logos

The research gives an inside track on who is winning the biggest share of voice online and quantifies the gaps, risks and missed opportunities for other car leasing companies to win brand exposure, drive online views, and ultimately generate new leases. The report highlights quick wins that will improve enquiries from your online strategy and identifies the barriers that may be reducing your site’s ability to optimise digital performance.

To see a preview and contents page of the Q1 report, click here. To get a copy of the full report and the key takeaways, please complete the enquiry form or schedule a call. Car Leasing - COVER 1


For a glance into just 6 of the metrics we evaluated these top 12 car leasing companies on, check out our quick-look table below; CarLeasing W&L Feb24

Continue reading for further detail on this quarter's best and poorest-performing UK car leasing companies or request a copy of the report for the full review.

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What The Industry Research Report Covers

The 70+ pages of research benchmarks each retailer based on 50+ metrics and indicators of successful digital strategy, including organic visibility, domain authority, paid media ads, conversion performance, technical performance, site speed, universal search, content, social ads, accessibility, and mobile performance.  

Driving Optimal ROAS from Paid Media Channels

Some of the leading players in the space are high spenders on paid media channels such as Google, Bing & Facebook - but have a poor or sub-optimal conversion improvement strategy. Without an optimised, sophisticated conversion strategy that maximises the conversion rate, the return on investment is unsustainable or will underperform. Scaling spend on paid media is not achievable unless the conversion rate delivers optimal performance in the sector. Some in the space have paid media spend levels from 30k+ per month but dedicate minimal resources and budgets to conversion testing.  Given the cost per clicks on ad networks will continue to rise, we recommend spending at least 10% of your paid media budget on ongoing conversion optimisation testing schedules to ensure your paid media ROI maintains long-term viability, competitive advantage, and sustainability.

Technical Website Compliance

Savvy digital marketers know that having a technically sound website is an essential component of a successful fully integrated digital strategy - plus a site capable of maximising conversion performance.  For car leasing companies, having an easy-to-navigate site is essential for drivers needing to enquire about leasing options and particular care should be taken of the pathways to key pages, such as contact forms or request-a-call options.

In our last report, Tusker flagged 195 4xx error codes, which it’s slightly reduced to 165 in this quarter. Tusker needs to spend time improving its internal linking structure to prevent customers becoming frustrated if they’re lead down a dead end. Additionally, Lex Autolease returned 76 4xx errors — a slight improvement from 78 in the previous quarter.

Site Speed & Conversion Rate Performance

When 62% of consumers are less likely to convert if they have a negative mobile site experience, ensuring that your site is quick and easy to load makes a significant improvement on your overall conversion rates. As with ensuring their site is technically compliant, car leasing companies will want to ensure they are delivering a quick, easy-to-use site which encourages users to choose their company over competitors.

The site speed score for this quarter ranged between 67 and 11, with Zenith reporting the lowest score. This car leasing company should optimise its images to ensure that they’re not slowing down its website. We’re pleased to see that Lex Autolease is no longer in the bottom and has increased its site speed from 18 in our previous audit to 21 in this quarter.

Building Competitive Advantage with Domain Authority

Domain authority is an essential metric for measuring the effectiveness of SEO performance and helps create a reliable overall gauge of how effective your site is at achieving organic traffic, i.e. ‘free’ traffic that isn’t gained through sponsored ads. Car leasing companies can work with a digital PR specialist to develop campaigns that tie into the wider automotive sector, pick up traction with publications, and build their backlink profile.

A ‘good’ DA really comes down to how your competitors are performing, however it’s generally considered average between 40 and 50, good between 50 and 60, and excellent above 60. The DA rating for this quarter was between 72 and 28, with only two companies below the recommended 40 threshold. Kinto has the lowest score overall and also has the lowest total backlinks (279), and it should adopt a PR strategy to increase this and help improve its DA rating for the next quarter.

Organic Performance – Mobile & Desktop

A strong organic performance is strategically important as it ensures your site ranks above competitors for key, transactional keywords. When 93% of your customers won’t go past the first page of Google, your absence or lack of targeting for essential keywords will cost you conversions. Car leasing companies might expect to see less organic traffic due to the cost of living crisis, as motorists opt to buy older models as opposed to leasing newer cars that will be more expensive long-term.

Nine of the 12 companies encountered a loss in organic mobile traffic compared to last year, with ALD Automotives noting a 100% loss in traffic. Kinto saw a 3% increase, which is a huge improvement from a 58% loss in our previous audit.

Universal Search Opportunity

Google Universal Search Results is an evolving opportunity to make your pages visible on a SERP (Search Engine Results Page). Universal results often appear before traditional listings and are eye-catching for users. Universal search results refer to rankings on a SERP that are not the traditional ‘blue line’ Google link, and a retailer can appear for Universal Search results without being strong in standard rankings. Car leasing companies will want to prioritise 'people also ask' results, as these are an opportunity to share information about the car leasing process directly from the SERP.

Once again, Arnold Clark has the most appearances for Universal Search results, scoring 12,600 ‘reviews’ (meanwhile, the other companies scored zero for this category) and 61,000 for the ‘image’ sector. Other car leasing companies should make improvements to their Universal Search results, concentrating on ‘reviews’.

The Longtail Keyword Opportunity

Longtail keywords are often considered high intent and potentially more likely to convert as a searcher is being more specific. This builds on what we've discussed within our Organic Performance section, as car leasing companies will want to ensure they have key, transactional phrases within their approach. Optimising for longtail keywords also puts your content strategy in a strong position to rank for retailer new search terms as they enter Google’s index. Car leasing companies will want to pay particular attention to high conversion-intent phrases, such as particular models or payment durations.

Arnold Clark is at the top of the leaderboard for the top three search results, with over 32 times the number of the runner-up: Arval. Speaking of Arval, this company has 943 appearances in pages 4–10, demonstrating that it has an excellent longtail keyword strategy and its likely won’t drop.

Facebook Adverts

With the number of Facebook users in the United Kingdom (UK) forecast to hit over 42 million users by 2022, it is not surprising that companies have jumped at the opportunity to advertise on the social media platform. Facebook’s UK digital advertising revenue has been estimated to have breached 2.6b GB pounds in 2019

We’ve included 3 examples of Arnold Clark’s sponsored Facebook posts. It uses vertical videos for each post, tailoring to customers using a mobile. Across 2 images, it uses the same text, suggesting that it’s testing its video content for engagement.

Car Leasing - Facebook Arnold Clark Advert

Top Social Shares & Content

When it comes to social media and on-site content strategies, it is important to release content that has a longer shelf life. An article is considered 'Evergreen' if it has maintained its relevancy to an audience for longer. It's great for your retailer engagement, but great for Google too, who will recognise content which achieves traffic over a long period of time. Social media could be especially useful for sharing information about any salary sacrifice schemes car leasing companies may offer, both to employers and employees. 

Most of the brands favour Facebook, which is an excellent strategy to reach their audiences based on location. Arnold Clark has the largest Facebook and Instagram accounts, with 126,600 Facebook Likes and 35,300 Instagram followers — an increase from our previous audit. This car leasing company also has the highest total engagement rates, exemplifying that its audience enjoys its content.

Website Readability & Accessibility

20% of people in the UK have a disability – 2 million of which are people living with sight loss. In addition, 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women have some degree of colour vision deficiency. When websites are not designed to meet these needs, retailers lose customer interest as they turn elsewhere. Despite brands in the automotive space not typically needing to accommodate vision deficiency in their products, they should still ensure their site is accessible. 

In our last audit, we reported that Arval flagged 77 errors and 80 contrast errors. In this quarter, this company has 84 errors and 81 contrast errors, and it needs to take action against slow loading pages, HTTP errors, and more. Moreover, Tusker reported 78 alerts, with the majority of these coming from suspicious alternative text. This could mean that alternative text is missing from images or that the text doesn’t accurately convey the image.


To get a copy of the full report, please complete the enquiry form. If you want to talk to us about accelerating your digital performance, please call us on 01543 410014 or schedule a call with Mike Movassaghi.

Photo by Samuele Errico Piccarini on Unsplash

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