1. Stop being a LURKER - join our dealer community and get involved. Sign up and start a conversation.
    Dismiss Notice

Carfax now competing with Cars.com & AutoTrader.com?

Discussion in 'Websites, SEO, SEM, Display, Social, Marketing' started by Jeff Kershner, Mar 28, 2014.

This forum sponsored by...
  1. Jeff Kershner

    Jeff Kershner
    Expand Collapse
    Founder

    First Name:
    Jeff
    Dealer or Company Name:
    DealerRefresh & Mercedes-Benz of Hagerstown
    Joined:
    May 1, 2005
    Messages:
    3,320
    Likes Received:
    846
    Location:
    Maryland
    Last week I posted Carfax Introduces "New" Used Car Listing Consumer Portal - over on the blog. I was surprised to see no comments.

    I thought it was big news to see Carfax jump into the vehicle listings landscape, while going up against the likes of AutoTrader.com, Cars.com to compete for traffic and consumers searching for their next Used Car. Considering Carfax (and POLK) is now owned by IHS and could potentially take advantage of a wealth of data to help power and offer a different online shopping experience for the consumer.

    Carfax has been somewhat quiet with a soft launch of the new listing website and service. However, when I asked how they planned to get the message out about their new listing portal then answered with... "We’re rolling out a national ad campaign in the coming months to help consumers find the right car with the right history for sale from dealers on Carfax Used Car Listings."

    Is this big news or an I over exaggerating here?
    Does Carfax have a chance here to stir up the market?

    Could they become a real competitor to the other used car listing website?

    Speak Up!!

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    • Like Like x 1
  2. This forum sponsored by...
  3. csabatka1

    csabatka1
    Expand Collapse
    Refresher

    First Name:
    Chad
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Steering Innovation
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    61
    I want this to succeed so badly, but I have my doubts. The national rep I talked to basically said this was a result of their fallout from AutoTrader.com and they wanted to stick it to them. Anything that can take from AutoTrader has my support.

    I was told their major national ad campaign was coming during the NCAA Tourney... that didn't happen. We are on it free for 30 days, which ends at the end of March, but was just told they're leaving us on it at no charge for an indefinite amount of time until all bugs are worked out. I'm viewing this more of a sloppy rollout than a soft rollout. The regional and local rep stopped in unannounced one day and basically said we have this used car listings product that is rolling out and we want you to get on it for free. They basically had an ipad with screenshots of it with zero information and who to contact. It took about 2 weeks to get our feed right and just yesterday finally got our correct ADF/XML email added. I think they're in over their heads a bit and were a little rushed to get it out.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  4. danoneil

    danoneil
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Dan
    Dealer or Company Name:
    National Motors
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2009
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    29
    Location:
    National Motors in Baltimore
    I find the news interesting.

    Jeff asked "Does Carfax have a chance here to stir up the market?" YES

    "Could they become a real competitor to the other used car listing website?"



    When you think about buying a car, "show me the carfax" has been a marketing success with consumers.

    In my opinion, having their own consumer portal will be a good (low risk) vertical.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    • Like Like x 1
  5. ryan.leslie

    ryan.leslie
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Ryan
    Dealer or Company Name:
    DealerRater
    Twitter Handle:
    jrleslie
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2009
    Messages:
    531
    Likes Received:
    367
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    I agree Dan, it makes a lot of sense for them to try to stir up the market if they are no longer the exclusive provider of history reports to the classified sites. How hard they stir will come down to the execution and consumer experience on the site.

    If you'd have asked what company has the opportunity to get into the classified listing space successfully, I'd think they would've been in the top 3 for most of us. "What the Fox say" definitely has the consumer's ear.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    #4 ryan.leslie, Mar 28, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2014
    • Like Like x 1
  6. DennisGalbraith

    DennisGalbraith
    Expand Collapse
    Noob

    First Name:
    Dennis
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Dealer E-Process
    Twitter Handle:
    @DennisGalbraith
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2011
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    3
    After talking to a Carfax spokesperson this afternoon, I think their approach is brilliant. They have enough inventory to be a good consumer experience in most markets. They already have a financial relationship with dealers, yet they started with a free model and are going into the paid version giving dealers a free taste.

    They learned from the mistakes of others and are not doing the things dealers have criticized other listings providers about. They must be reading DealerRefresh.
    1) There is no advertising on the VDP and no way for another dealer to buy into a chance to take shoppers from another dealer's VDP. Once the shopper is on the VDP, its all about that vehicle from that store.
    2) There is no way for one dealer to buy their way above another dealer in the search results. The listings are based entirely on relevance.
    3) The link to the dealer's website is prominent. Wherever possible, the link to the dealer's site goes directly to that vehicles VDP on the dealer's site. The place with the most information on a given vehicle should always be the dealer's website, and Carfax seems to get that.

    The marketing push starts April 7. They are not showing their cards, but I'd bet it has something to do with the ability to search for vehicles with the confidence they all have a Carfax report available.

    However, Jeff's core question was whether they will stir up the market. Frankly, the Carfax relationship with the other listings providers could be worth more than the additional net profit they can obtain as a listings service. I doubt they will go at this market with a shark-like attitude. More likely, they will use their additional power to force other listings services to play on their terms. If Cars.com, AutoTrader.com, and Edmunds.com are smart, they will find a way to play nice with Carfax. If they approach it another way, they could find out how strong Carfax can really be. For dealers, increased competition for their business is good news either way.

    There is one area of preparation where dealers should take note. The importance of VDPs on the dealer's website just went up. Carfax will use them as landing pages, much as good SEM providers do for long-tail searches.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Manny Luna

    Manny Luna
    Expand Collapse
    Refresher

    First Name:
    Manny
    Dealer or Company Name:
    VL Digital Marketing
    Twitter Handle:
    @VLAutoMarketing
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    Messages:
    140
    Likes Received:
    20
    Only time will tell, Show me the right price...$139,995.00

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    #6 Manny Luna, Mar 28, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 8, 2015
  8. joe.pistell

    joe.pistell
    Expand Collapse
    Uncle Joe

    First Name:
    Joe
    Dealer or Company Name:
    DealerX.com
    Twitter Handle:
    JoePistell
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,883
    Likes Received:
    1,297
    Location:
    New York
    Manny,

    Your a vendor, you should know how the inventory distribution system works. That's a feed problem.

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    • Like Like x 1
  9. ddavis

    ddavis
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Doug
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Retired
    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2011
    Messages:
    1,488
    Likes Received:
    485
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Or not.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Manny Luna

    Manny Luna
    Expand Collapse
    Refresher

    First Name:
    Manny
    Dealer or Company Name:
    VL Digital Marketing
    Twitter Handle:
    @VLAutoMarketing
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2011
    Messages:
    140
    Likes Received:
    20
    Yes Joe it is, I would love to see them succeed.
     
  11. kevinfrye

    kevinfrye
    Expand Collapse
    Jr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Kevin
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Jeff Wyler Automotive Family
    Twitter Handle:
    kevinfrye1
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Messages:
    247
    Likes Received:
    151
    Location:
    Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana
    Has anyone been using the CarFax Used Car listings with success?
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

Share This Page

This forum sponsored by...