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I am BEYOND frustrated with Dealer.com

yagoparamo

Sr. Refresher
Dec 30, 2009
1,901
493
113
First Name
Yago
It's the buyers responsibility to set standards and police the work.
It's the vendor's responsibility to earn the buyers trust & become an irreplaceable partner.

When I see pics like this, I sense the dealer managers don't know how bad the pics are. I'd bet they're too busy, too tired and don't know where to start to fix this. If I were a inventory vendor in this town, I'd call Yago and he'd close that sale on the first visit ;-)
Joe,

Thank you for the lead but... we only service a small part of the country with this particular service.

What is important is why.

The photo/data business requires: A good data effort, scheduling (operations), equipment, photo ability, some technical skills (support), and more than anything; a lot of heart to put all of them together every day.

It really relies on hardworking people with an interesting set of skills, willing to work alone in-usually-too cold or too hot weather conditions.

So the reason why we didn't expand this business too much is because you can only go as far as the people we find, it is not easily-quality-scalable (from a one company POV).

I have had dealers cancel my photo service because my guy missed cars in the back (but he had no access to the back!), didn't do an expensive cars (but the manager was driving it), the photos look dark (and it rains in WA or OR for 90 days straight), the guy missed 3 cars (it rained so much that the equipment just failed, so we sent another guy next day), didn't show up one day (even though we have back up, we have 5 guys with flu after raining for 90 days and 30F), someone that needs a job right now undercut our service for $2 (so the dealer sales 50 cars and it will save $100/month), etc.

So what we changed was our notion of growing as much as we could to growing with the dealerships that want to work with us. Focused on photographer retention (health insurance for all full time photo guys before Obama made that cool), guaranteed salary even if the dealers don't sell the cars (usually photographers get paid per piece only); photographer technical knowledge, and above anything--on time service (we always show, because we have enough support guys behind it).

From my experience after seeing dealers go back and forth for years (Bruce Titus cancelled and hired us back 5 times in the last 5 years) I recommend that you forge a strong relationship with the people doing this.

There is not a lot of money in it, it requires smart people, and it takes a lot of heart. Not put all those together.
 
Reactions: 1 person

ddavis

Sr. Refresher
Jun 28, 2011
1,493
491
113
First Name
Doug
Yago, Huge decision: what days supply are we going to maintain by model? You stick to this and only order what you need. You watch the inventory and you fill what you need by color, trim and option. Obviously, you continue to look for growth potential. What does it cost to floor the average vehicle? Trust me, these decision are being made from the hip. I could show you spread sheets that went back years. You get terminated over $100?

There were 143 stores in my group. We ran the volume internet department with a budget that was in the lower fifty percentile, in the group. My GM never refused any increase to the budget. Hell, he wanted to throw money at the department. I did all of the inventory projections for him. I also came up with the internet pay plan and knew every dollar that was being spent in advertising. Anyone worrying about $2/car is a joke.
 

ddavis

Sr. Refresher
Jun 28, 2011
1,493
491
113
First Name
Doug
Screen Shot1.jpg

I was always jealous of dealerships that had the facilities to have a photo booth. I added some backlighting to the image. If you don't have a booth, you can edit the pictures to sharpen the outside pictures.

DSC00606.jpg

It looks fake but would a customer click on it on a Cars.com SERP?
 
Reactions: 1 person

Manny Luna

Refresher
Apr 10, 2011
140
20
0
First Name
Manny
We love working with dealer.com sites (Quick Powerful Indexing) and never had any major issues with them.

DJ~ Jake you may want to check out Flex Dealer if you are interested in a site that will allow you full customization...

Be careful here please , they're out of Canada and the PI address could have some effects on your results.

Dealer.com Rocks!

 
Jun 5, 2014
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Michael
Manny, we haven't run into any IP address issues so far.

Google used to look at where the host server was based, but now they allow you to signify the target location for the site through webmaster tools.
We've also kept an eye on other search engines and haven't found this to be a problem.
 
Reactions: 1 person

Manny Luna

Refresher
Apr 10, 2011
140
20
0
First Name
Manny
Manny, we haven't run into any IP address issues so far.

Google used to look at where the host server was based, but now they allow you to signify the target location for the site through webmaster tools.
We've also kept an eye on other search engines and haven't found this to be a problem.
That's great to hear Michael, Good luck !!
 

craigh

Super Moderator
May 19, 2011
1,666
1,080
114
First Name
Craig
they're out of Canada and the PI address could have some effects on your results.
This hasn't really been an issue in years. The only issue is if the server cannot serve up the websites fast enough.
If you hosted your US dealership website in Hong Kong with a .com domain and it served up as fast as a Washington D.C. server then Google wouldn't let it affect your rank.

Dealer.com Rocks!
Oddly enough, the issue above was the biggest problem we had with Dealer.com back in the day (2-3 years ago before I worked on what I do now). We worked with their team to try and speed up the websites because they got so slow that Google started to de-rank them based on performance.
May have just been a by-product of having Dealer.com websites resold to Canada, but I believe they were all hosted in the states on Dealer.com servers. Dealer.com in the US gets the cool SEO and other toys long before Canadian resellers, so their product is far better for you.