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Autotrader vs Cars.com Value comparison

joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
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Now the corporate answer to this idea would be how the platform could not accept this type of mod. The ENTREPRENEURIAL EXEC knows that it needs to be tested and would find a way to make it happen. The bold exec would pick a cross section of dealers (large and small) and pick those dealers that has the most mature internal reporting and feedback loop. Smaller dealers have the decision maker on the floor, so "they get it" faster. Larger dealers have the mass to see if the concept has traction over a larger sample. In the end, the idea lives or dies on how well the dealer digs in and works it the Template. You'd find that dealers that are already working ebay wll have the staff on board to build it with the least amount of training.

I like this idea... A LOT!
 

jon.berna

D.R. Truth
Nov 14, 2011
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Jon
Our cost per opportunity (leads + calls) for 10 store group is $73 for ATC and $32 for Cars.com. We are in a Cars.com paper supported market. To me the VDP and SRP numbers are important but my logic is all things being equal I primarily care what's measurable on my side. The Showroom argument (...yeah but what about the 5 billion people that just walked in after seeing the car on ____) to me is not measurable 100% so therefore not a part of the conversion. Yes you can source and survey etc. But at what point does all of that just become "extra" effort spent on not converting The other thought that consumers will go on the dealer site the next morning (direct link, search etc.) and not as a referral from ____ to me is also not measurable.

At the end of the day we all need to press these guys for better deals. Too many dealers paying too much out there! Don't allow them to toss fluff into a conversation that need to be about what did I pay and what did I get.
 

lightnup

Noob
Nov 21, 2009
17
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Stanley
Okay, so I'm looking at 60" TVs and go online to check out the makes/prices at Best Buy, HHGregg, SAMs. Narrow it down to those that interest me, then I.....what, do I email them? Heck no. What would I do that for? Especially not knowing how long it might take to get a response. And, just starting my shopping, and I sure don't want my email address in some big box store's CRM system. Do I call them? Probably not, unless I have some unanswered question, which is unlikely considering all of the specs, images and pricing info on the sites. Maybe I'll call to see if they have one, but probably not because I want to be able to compare whatever is there and maybe there is something that I will like better that's just not showing on their site. Oh, what to do? I know, I'll drive down to the store and "test drive" the TVs, see the picture quality, hear the sound quality. Once I'm there, there's no reason to tell them I was on their site because it's not pertient to the buying discussion (unless I see that their online prices are lower than their in-store prices, which would just tick me off).

80% of shoppers just walk in without previous contact. To say they should not be considered when judging effectiveness and ROI is doing a disservice to the dealer who is looking for overall results when deciding to spend his money most effectively, not just what the Internet Manger is seeing.
 

joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
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...80% of shoppers just walk in without previous contact. To say they should not be considered when judging effectiveness and ROI is doing a disservice to the dealer who is looking for overall results when deciding to spend his money most effectively, not just what the Internet Manger is seeing.
No disservice intended!! I am simply and specifically talking about the business of "working the content" to produce more yield.

I bet if we met at NADA and had an hour or 2 over an adult beverage, you'd see that we're on the same page! No one preaches more about "demoting conversions in favor of optimizing for the silent majority" than me http://forum.dealerrefresh.com/google.php?cx=018437389317799583975:u6h0qif88mw&cof=FORID:10&ie=UTF-8&q=silent+majority&siteurl=forum.dealerrefresh.com/

I am now a John Ross disciple, drinking Shopper Sciences kool-aide (heres the post where I refer to the findings http://forum.dealerrefresh.com/f21/autotrader-vs-cars-com-value-comparison-2340-5.html#post20646 )

If you see the ThinkAuto chart (below) and ponder on it's priorities, you'll agree that ALL DEALER WEB CONTENT SHOULD BE PREACHING ABOUT THE DEALER EXPERIENCE (not on conversions)

(I have this posted on my office wall, 3 feet from my face and it talks to me every day ;-)

IMO, i completely believe that if I build the content not to focus on the conversion, but on the benefits of the dealer experience (see chart Top Influences #1 and #2), I'll end up with more ups (albeit stealth). If I can successfully communicate this message, a side benefit to this is a "less timid" shopper. A "less timid" shopper should be more likely to fill out a form!

NOW, look at Top Influence #3 "REQUEST A QUOTE" hmm... sounds a look like a NEW lead tool?

OK... Check out Top Influence #4, "Searched Dealer Inventory". No leads here, but, i betcha there's lots of VDP opportunity here.

etc....
 
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jon.berna

D.R. Truth
Nov 14, 2011
137
160
43
First Name
Jon
Okay, so I'm looking at 60" TVs and go online to check out the makes/prices at Best Buy, HHGregg, SAMs. Narrow it down to those that interest me, then I.....what, do I email them? Heck no. What would I do that for? Especially not knowing how long it might take to get a response. And, just starting my shopping, and I sure don't want my email address in some big box store's CRM system. Do I call them? Probably not, unless I have some unanswered question, which is unlikely considering all of the specs, images and pricing info on the sites. Maybe I'll call to see if they have one, but probably not because I want to be able to compare whatever is there and maybe there is something that I will like better that's just not showing on their site. Oh, what to do? I know, I'll drive down to the store and "test drive" the TVs, see the picture quality, hear the sound quality. Once I'm there, there's no reason to tell them I was on their site because it's not pertient to the buying discussion (unless I see that their online prices are lower than their in-store prices, which would just tick me off).

80% of shoppers just walk in without previous contact. To say they should not be considered when judging effectiveness and ROI is doing a disservice to the dealer who is looking for overall results when deciding to spend his money most effectively, not just what the Internet Manger is seeing.
Although I understand where you are coming from this is what 3rd party vendors have been jamming down our throats for years. We are primarily talking about used car leads here too. If Best Buy, HHGregg, SAMs were selling "Used" $20,000 TVs you think they would get a few more calls before people just showed up? I do. The reason people think 80% of shoppers walk in without prior contact is they never had the proper controls in place to collect them pre-store visit. Once you do the number will plummet.

My point is stop taking the bait and start reviewing what you can actually see. Then you will get better pricing. If you buy into all the fluff then you start paying for it!
 

yagoparamo

Sr. Refresher
Dec 30, 2009
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Yago
EXAMPLE: eBay allows dealers to get in there and create/edit/improve/personalize each ad.

Have you ever thought to see what creative would happen if you gave a couple dozen power dealers a WYSIWYG Template editor to build their own presentation?

Think about it.... You would have created:
  • the explosion of dealer content (video, pics, links, forms, coupons and on and on),
  • the elimination of visual repetition (aka BULLET LIST BOREDOM),
  • the additional commitment the dealer would need to make to your platform...
Sounds like Win-Win to me! What do you say DR community, would you hunker down and build a custom AT VDP template, then circle back and drop custom offers on the VDPs? (like a walk around video, or special coupon on an aged unit, or...)

Game. Set. Match.
So that would be like... Craigslist where you can put anything you want in the ad.
 

joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
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Joe
So that would be like... Craigslist where you can put anything you want in the ad.
Very good observation yag. Your skill level is improving!
 

yagoparamo

Sr. Refresher
Dec 30, 2009
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Yago
Very good observation yag. Your skill level is improving!
Thank you for the positive comment Joe. I'm glad to see that you are no longer discouraging people from voicing their opinions even if they don't have as many years of experience as you have and they may also differ from your true answers.

My skill level is improving because, like many other readers, I don't know everything yet like you so I still put my 2 cents for others that like me seek to learn.
 

ddavis

Sr. Refresher
Jun 28, 2011
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Doug
Thank you for the positive comment Joe. I'm glad to see that you are no longer discouraging people from voicing their opinions even if they don't have as many years of experience as you have and they may also differ from your true answers.
The only way this forum is beneficial, is when people have different opinions and view points. If everyone is like-minded, what is the point? For the most part, we are car people. If they can't handle someone, like Joe, with a strong personality, they probably need to find another line of work. Jeff, once told me that people complained that this crowd is too rough. The car business isn't for a sissy.
 
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joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
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Thank you for the positive comment Joe. I'm glad to see that you are no longer discouraging people from voicing their opinions even if they don't have as many years of experience as you have and they may also differ from your true answers.

My skill level is improving because, like many other readers, I don't know everything yet like you so I still put my 2 cents for others that like me seek to learn.
C'mon yag, your a craigslist vendor. You reply was simply featuring something craigslist already does. I took your reply as sarcastic.