2 min read

2019’s top automotive groups ranked by revenue and search

It’s back again! AM Online has announced the 2019 table of the top 100 car dealers. It’s an anticipated time for all UK automotive retail groups, and this year we’re especially delighted at Honchō to see that our clients Group 1 Automotive, Pentagon Motor Holdings and Renault Retail Group are all holding prominent positions on the list! If you’d like to see what our automotive service can do for your dealership, check out our website.

Who are the current car dealer leaders?

We can see Sytner, Lookers and Pendragon fighting for the top three spots again this year. Here is the top five table ranked by revenue:

1. Sytner Group

2. Lookers

3. Pendragon

4. Arnold Clark 

5. Vertu Motors

You can check out the full list here, via AM Online.

Flipping the 2019 league table

At Honchō, we’re unashamedly search nerds. We love a list and data as much as the next digital marketing agency or SEO professional, but when it comes to automotive, what we really care about is organic search traffic and rankings. 

This list, while notable, is compiled based on company turnover, essentially showing which dealerships are making the most profit. So what would this table look like if we looked at it based on search, analysing who customers are looking for and site traffic, as opposed to just £££? 

Well, we’ve done the work for you. We’ve delved into the top five from the 100 table, and looked at how they perform on Google and the user search patterns.

Introducing Honchō’s SEO100

We used SEMRush’s organic search data and saw a significant shift when search is factored in. Here is the top five table ranked by organic traffic that we’ve aptly named the SEO100:

Honchō's SEO100 league table


Please note: when analysing organic traffic through SEMRush using competitor index data, we have looked at the all automotive sites included within the dealership group.

According to SEMRush organic search data, Vertu Motors and Sytner completely switch positions; Vertu is ranked first and Sytner is ranked fifth in search terms. In comparison to the AM100 list, although Vertu Motors is ranked in fifth position, this dealer’s domain has the greatest amount of organic traffic coming to its website. Similarly, although being ranked second by AM100, Lookers ranked fourth in terms of its organic traffic results.


Honcho Automotive Specialists


What does this mean for dealerships?

These top 100 lists are important and interesting when it comes to industry awareness and brand positioning, and can be a huge recognition and vanity exercise. But when it comes to rankings and the number of organic visits to the dealer’s website, however, there is a greater call for SEO than ever.

As can be seen above, the supposed more successful dealer groups (“successful” in this case meaning the most profitable) are still lacking in digital presence, which is evident in their lower levels of organic traffic.


What do you think to the Honchō SEO100? Should organic search rankings play a more crucial part in such league tables in the future? Let us know your thoughts and join in the conversation on Twitter!

Looking at popularity for manufacturers

AM100 condenses the sales figures for dealerships, but how does this look when we’re talking about manufacturers? Ever wondered what it would visually look like to show how car manufacturers change in popularity in the UK for example? Well we’ve answered that by creating a short video showing the UK new car sales from 2018 to 2018, which you can see below (we did say above that we love data!).

There are some interesting movements over the last eight years:

  • Ford maintains the hero position throughout

  • German brands have climbed and taken higher places in 2018; with Mercedes-Benz overtaking both BMW and Audi

  • Land Rover is still growing; going from the bottom at the start to 12th by 2018 – watch this space!

You can find out more about Honchō and our automotive services here.



Please note: SEMRush data is based on clickstream data that comes from multiple proprietary and 3rd party data sources. This data may or may not be 100% accurate and should be used as a reference point amongst other sources used for competitive intelligence. The data is accumulated and approximated from the user behaviour of over 200 million real internet users over one hundred different apps and browser extensions are used to collect it.

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