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My Rant about DealerInspire.

Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,189
606
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Alex
Just so we're all clear. I was inferring it's the WORST. LOL! I tried to work with it for several months on behalf of a client.

"Hazel's" code bloat is atrocious, and I don't recommend their platform.
Yep, I read you loud and clear they're awful. Goes to show you the corruption.

Hazel... ha!
 
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Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,189
606
113
First Name
Alex
I agree, at least we don't have to pay an extra fee for "Advanced Access," or contact support for simple changes. I appreciate that DI is there to support us if we need it, but they also do a great job of getting out of the way.

With the proper permissions, we can change the style of our SRP and VDP pages, troubleshoot inventory issues and remove annoying third-party vendor scripts without asking for help.

Regarding Page Builders:
One of the things I despise about page builders is the resulting code bloat. The importance of semantic code is often lost once platforms start introducing page builders. I'm looking at you Jazel.... Granted, not all page builders are the same. I think if implemented with care a platform can get the best of both worlds to serve all of their customers. Solid conversation here.
FordDirect Offering Ford Dealers New Website Choices | Ford Direct
https://www.forddirect.com/news/forddirect-offering-ford-dealers-new-website-choices

Our Ford Dealer customers will now be able to choose from four website suppliers, including: 1.) CDK, 2.) DealerOn, 3.) Dealer.com and 4.) Jazel.

:rofl::lmao:

Dealers with half a brain go with DealerOn, a far superior platform and marketing offerings.
 
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Carluminati

Getting Refreshed
Feb 17, 2015
83
34
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Chris
I'm just wondering when car dealers will add up their website costs x 36 months and realize how much money you'll save just hitting a pro to build it for you and host with a safe and secure company. Example, most sites cost $2,000/mo x 36/most = $72,000! For under $5k, build custom, use Divi builder and take the team to Tahiti vs. throwing your money away. It's remarkable so many still avoid the custom route, and stick to dealer only tech, when the actual tech market encompasses over 10,000 companies and millions of freelance gurus. My opinion
 

Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,189
606
113
First Name
Alex
I'm just wondering when car dealers will add up their website costs x 36 months and realize how much money you'll save just hitting a pro to build it for you and host with a safe and secure company. Example, most sites cost $2,000/mo x 36/most = $72,000! For under $5k, build custom, use Divi builder and take the team to Tahiti vs. throwing your money away. It's remarkable so many still avoid the custom route, and stick to dealer only tech, when the actual tech market encompasses over 10,000 companies and millions of freelance gurus. My opinion
You bring up a valid point (and we've been through this I feel like 1,000 times in these waters), BUT there's a lot of custom components and understanding of the use of inventory feeds, inventory requirements, financial / credit apps, etc. that really make a custom build not as easy as you make it seem. Plus, there's the support behind it (if a 3rd party walks away, then what, who inherits the system and code...?).

Although I'm wholeheartedly a rogue, guerrilla marketer and believer, I feel as if going with a credible 3rd party auto web platform group is worth the cost. I've listed my favorites many times, I'll not give them another round of accolades.
 

Dan Sayer

Getting Refreshed
Dec 4, 2009
91
74
18
First Name
Dan
I'm just wondering when car dealers will add up their website costs x 36 months and realize how much money you'll save just hitting a pro to build it for you and host with a safe and secure company. Example, most sites cost $2,000/mo x 36/most = $72,000! For under $5k, build custom, use Divi builder and take the team to Tahiti vs. throwing your money away. It's remarkable so many still avoid the custom route, and stick to dealer only tech, when the actual tech market encompasses over 10,000 companies and millions of freelance gurus. My opinion
@Carluminati I'll tell you why most dealers won't do it; co-op. In 2010 I was using DealerFire and had a phenom for an account rep, Matthew Cole. I get a call from Matthew one day that he is leaving to "go and help start a dealer website company using WordPress..." (a $165M decision seven years later LOL). My wheels were turning because I hated all the other options in 2010 for sites so eventually, with a lot of encouragement from my COO, we hired a WP dev, Chad Sebatka, and took all the sites in-house. I think at one time we had 22 sites. I was in heaven because I could have the sites really any way that I wanted. Chad is a unicorn and finding a guy like that is the biggest challenge. The main deterrent though is the OEM requirement of using a certified provider (which in Nebraska is pretty much illegal according to franchise law). Just for our 3 Ford stores, using a FordDirect provider increased our co-op match by $250k this year which more than pays for the site fees. We are down to 3 main market sites, a couple Kia sites, and a group site using our "in-house" guy. I add ""'s because I moved Chad out of the auto group so he could be fully vested in his own company, Steering Innovation, at the beginning of this year. His biggest challenge will be the continued OEM requirements being managed by intermediaries like FordDirect, Internet Brands, and Shift Digital. My rant about how those wheels are greased are for another time...
 

Alexander Lau

Sr. Refresher
Feb 11, 2015
2,189
606
113
First Name
Alex
@Carluminati I'll tell you why most dealers won't do it; co-op. In 2010 I was using DealerFire and had a phenom for an account rep, Matthew Cole. I get a call from Matthew one day that he is leaving to "go and help start a dealer website company using WordPress..." (a $165M decision seven years later LOL). My wheels were turning because I hated all the other options in 2010 for sites so eventually, with a lot of encouragement from my COO, we hired a WP dev, Chad Sebatka, and took all the sites in-house. I think at one time we had 22 sites. I was in heaven because I could have the sites really any way that I wanted. Chad is a unicorn and finding a guy like that is the biggest challenge. The main deterrent though is the OEM requirement of using a certified provider (which in Nebraska is pretty much illegal according to franchise law). Just for our 3 Ford stores, using a FordDirect provider increased our co-op match by $250k this year which more than pays for the site fees. We are down to 3 main market sites, a couple Kia sites, and a group site using our "in-house" guy. I add ""'s because I moved Chad out of the auto group so he could be fully vested in his own company, Steering Innovation, at the beginning of this year. His biggest challenge will be the continued OEM requirements being managed by intermediaries like FordDirect, Internet Brands, and Shift Digital. My rant about how those wheels are greased are for another time...
Yeah, there's that too. Why pay out of pocket, when you can get it covered through coop. Although, there are plenty of pretender clowns out there.

This thread is actually a gripe about DI (Cole's affiliation), albeit probably one of the best IMO.
 

SoCalMark

Noob
Oct 14, 2010
29
23
8
First Name
Mark
Welcome to Wordpress - the land of workarounds and plugins.
Wordpress is great at many things, but it has always had an overly simplified page builder.
Almost every other CMS in the market has drag/drop, hours blocks, etc.

I've always used Wordpress for small business sites, landing pages, etc.
I've also always advocated against using it for large dealer sites, because building a bunch of plugins on top of an open source CMS isn't how you get to the "best" product possible.

Well said ----------- !!
 

SoCalMark

Noob
Oct 14, 2010
29
23
8
First Name
Mark
You bring up a valid point (and we've been through this I feel like 1,000 times in these waters), BUT there's a lot of custom components and understanding of the use of inventory feeds, inventory requirements, financial / credit apps, etc. that really make a custom build not as easy as you make it seem. Plus, there's the support behind it (if a 3rd party walks away, then what, who inherits the system and code...?).

Although I'm wholeheartedly a rogue, guerrilla marketer and believer, I feel as if going with a credible 3rd party auto web platform group is worth the cost. I've listed my favorites many times, I'll not give them another round of accolades.


You hit the nail on the head when you said "understanding of the use of inventory feeds"

Many DMS systems are licensed with other companies and will not allow inventory feed or data pulls - I tried it that way already. The rest of the build is easy and pretty repetitive. One car dealership website is not that different than another and they all have their cute little tag lines with #1 in sales banners. Essentially, they all do the same thing.
 
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Chris Cachor

Sr. Refresher
Apr 29, 2011
421
199
43
First Name
Chris
My wheels were turning because I hated all the other options in 2010 for sites so eventually, with a lot of encouragement from my COO, we hired a WP dev, Chad Sebatka, and took all the sites in-house. I think at one time we had 22 sites. I was in heaven because I could have the sites really any way that I wanted. Chad is a unicorn and finding a guy like that is the biggest challenge. The main deterrent though is the OEM requirement of using a certified provider (which in Nebraska is pretty much illegal according to franchise law). Just for our 3 Ford stores, using a FordDirect provider increased our co-op match by $250k this year which more than pays for the site fees.
Chad did a great job with those sites and his company Steering Innovation does great work. The co-op piece is very important, though.
 

Dan Sayer

Getting Refreshed
Dec 4, 2009
91
74
18
First Name
Dan
Yeah, there's that too. Why pay out of pocket, when you can get it covered through coop. Although, there are plenty of pretender clowns out there.

This thread is actually a gripe about DI (Cole's affiliation), albeit probably one of the best IMO.
Yes, I know what the thread was originally about. I would say they (DI) are the best all-around website provider out there in our industry. Yes, I used to work for them. No, I don't use them for all my sites. Yes, I use them when they're an OEM required option (Mazda and FCA) No, they aren't perfect. Yes, I believe they are finding the balance between their continued growth internally and the growth Cars Inc wants them to have. Bottom line, I'm a fan.
 
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