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yagoparamo

Sr. Refresher
Dec 30, 2009
1,901
493
113
First Name
Yago
Just wanted to throw this out there. I haven't read the entire thread and maybe someone might have mentioned this earlier. I'm not sure. AutoTrader is now offering website tracking codes similar to Dataium's. Without the tracking codes, if a customer is on AutoTrader, see's your vehicle and then goes to Google and enters your dealership website from Google, you really have no way of knowing that customer was originally on AutoTrader.com and we give the credit to Google. With the tracking codes you will now be able to connect the dots and see that customer was on AT first. They are rolling this feature out very slowly. If your interested in it you will need to contact your rep and they will have to get approval. The trial goes on for 3 months and then they will show you the data / results.

Heres some more info about the program:
http://www.weworkforyou.com/uploads/DigitalAudienceAnalysisFINAL12-19-12.pdf

If you don't like reading then watch the video
Dealer Learning Center | Learning Library | We Work For You

Also, I did have AutoTrader do a sourcing study for our Toyota store and the results was very positive. The sourcing study was free of charge to us and AT paid a 3rd party survey company to survey our sold customers and really dig in and see what really brought them into our store.

AT offers alot of good programs like this. You really need to get in tune with your rep and find out what AT can offer you other than a subscription.
Great info Rick,

For those of you that want to further check ATC value and don't want to use their code, you can also set up your funnels in your Google analitycs account and get a deeper understanding on the value of its traffic beyond direct referrals.

It is not complicated to set up but perhaps hard to understand the data if you are not well versed on SEO. Most dealers should be able to reach out to your regular SEM/Re-targeting company and work with them on both (set up and check).
 
Reactions: 1 person

Rick Buffkin

Sausage King of Chicago
Oct 29, 2009
588
560
93
First Name
Rick
Thanks Yago. I really wanted to visit your booth this past weekend at NADA but I didn't get a chance to. I was actually walking in that direction and I got side tracked by Social Dealer and then Richard Petty showed up at the booth behind us and I had to get a pic with him.
 

ddavis

Sr. Refresher
Jun 28, 2011
1,493
491
113
First Name
Doug
Just wanted to throw this out there. I haven't read the entire thread and maybe someone might have mentioned this earlier. I'm not sure. AutoTrader is now offering website tracking codes similar to Dataium's. Without the tracking codes, if a customer is on AutoTrader, see's your vehicle and then goes to Google and enters your dealership website from Google, you really have no way of knowing that customer was originally on AutoTrader.com and we give the credit to Google. With the tracking codes you will now be able to connect the dots and see that customer was on AT first. They are rolling this feature out very slowly. If your interested in it you will need to contact your rep and they will have to get approval. The trial goes on for 3 months and then they will show you the data / results.

Heres some more info about the program:
http://www.weworkforyou.com/uploads/DigitalAudienceAnalysisFINAL12-19-12.pdf

If you don't like reading then watch the video
Dealer Learning Center | Learning Library | We Work For You

Also, I did have AutoTrader do a sourcing study for our Toyota store and the results was very positive. The sourcing study was free of charge to us and AT paid a 3rd party survey company to survey our sold customers and really dig in and see what really brought them into our store.

AT offers alot of good programs like this. You really need to get in tune with your rep and find out what AT can offer you other than a subscription.
Rick, this is really good information and some impressive statistics.

This whole thread offers some good insights into third party display advertising, if people will take the time to read it in it's entirety.

Visit AutoTrader. Look at the number of vehicles where the vehicle has a VIN explosion instead of a good description. Many have poor pictures, no pictures or stock photos. These dealers are running a high days to market. Some of them will be $2000 above market for the first 45 days until panic mode sets in. Their main competitors are in the premium section and they are 4 pages back. Any dealer that I am describing is wasting their money and should cancel. This is about half of what you'll see and they contribute to those statistics. Take the dealers that do things well, and imagine their statistics. I've been told that AutoTrader isn't effective in some markets, but that hasn't been my experience.

You really need to get in tune with your rep
I have found that AutoTrader reps are among the elite vendors. They have a lot of knowledge, are extremely helpful, and can give you a lot of insight in what is going on in your market. I remember my rep, in Dallas, sitting down and helping me finish all of my specials. She was there several hours working with me.
 

StrongLLC

Noob
Oct 3, 2012
6
1
1
First Name
John Paul
Very interesting, Jerry. Kinda gels with my perception that Autotrader, while a viable automotive venue, is not as close to bottom-funnel shoppers as dealers would like.

You can't argue that a whole-lotta people "shop" on Autotrader. Whether it's consumer behavior or AT's set-up (or combo of both) that limit traditionally measurable results, "Shoppers" seem to step away from AT before becoming "buyers;" something "else" gets inserted in the middle there.

Does that mean Dealers should step away from AT? More likely, I thing the conversation needs to lean toward bottom-funnel pricing vs. the cost (& premise) of branding.
This is knocking on the door of the real conversation. Advertising and visibility create traffic for Autotrader and Cars.com. Consumers do not shop at either of these sites because they are incredible at targeting down-stream "buyers" or creating a relationship. I was recently in a meeting with a Rep from one of the two previously mentioned companies and their pitch is turning much more towards the benefits of branding for the dealership rather than leads. The guy kept talking about the "grey area" of a shoppers journey. "Today some one is shopping on our site and maybe five months from now they could remember seeing your vehicle on our site end up at your dealership ready to buy..." They know their effectiveness is limited and they are trying to sell something other than leads because at the end of the day dealers and their partners are getting better at developing sources of traffic and leads while lowering the CPA. Aggregation is never going to be the answer to effective internet business. It's lowest common denominator. SO...How do we target the bottom-funnel shoppers more effectively? Moreover, how do we get them to convert? :D
 

StrongLLC

Noob
Oct 3, 2012
6
1
1
First Name
John Paul
The problem with all of the statistics is that they bog down decision making. The reason these statistics exist (from Autotrader) to so they can show value to their product. That's how dealers are waking up one day paying 6-7k a month for something that should be way less expensive. I am all for digital advertising (look at my title) but it has to be at the right price. This overall notion that dealers have to use the two big 3rd party sites to be successful is ridiculous. Fear of loss is greater than the fear of gain I guess.

Really read some articles on ZMOT (I have by the way)...How's about cutting out the middle-man I'm sure there are a few articles on that!
You absolutely can get lost in analytics, but smart research and testing is the only way to improvement. Defensive spending or throwing money at the "opportunity of traffic" will only get you where you were yesterday. The guy who walks into the ring scared rarely walks out with his arms raised...
 

yagoparamo

Sr. Refresher
Dec 30, 2009
1,901
493
113
First Name
Yago
Thanks Yago. I really wanted to visit your booth this past weekend at NADA but I didn't get a chance to. I was actually walking in that direction and I got side tracked by Social Dealer and then Richard Petty showed up at the booth behind us and I had to get a pic with him.
Photo with Richard = A few friends amused

Photo with Yago = Women and riches for life!

I'll be in Seattle for the Digital Dealer seminar in March 20th, then Detroit in April for Internet Battle Plan just in case you were thinking to go.
 

ddavis

Sr. Refresher
Jun 28, 2011
1,493
491
113
First Name
Doug
their pitch is turning much more towards the benefits of branding for the dealership rather than leads. The guy kept talking about the "grey area" of a shoppers journey. They know their effectiveness is limited and they are trying to sell something other than leads because at the end of the day dealers and their partners are getting better at developing sources of traffic and leads while lowering the CPA.
If I was told by a AutoTrader rep that I need to spend that much for branding, I would throw them out, as soon as I stopped laughing. Unlike conventional media, we are restrained by that ROI report.

I touched a high percentage of our sold customers and I can't tell you how many of those were sourced to our website when interviewed came from AT or Cars. Jerry Thibeau, of Phone Ninja fame, shares this opinion after all the data he gets from monitoring the calls. Big Data and companies like Dataium are going to take much of the mystery out this. Considering conversion, here is an article that you might like that was sponsored by Cars.
 
Reactions: 2 people

joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
3,988
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Joe
IMO, scoring Internet marketing or platforms by lead counts is so last century...

HIPPOs want to count leads, while shoppers avoid forms. Who do you want to optimize for?

Think about it.
 
Reactions: 1 person

StrongLLC

Noob
Oct 3, 2012
6
1
1
First Name
John Paul
IMO, scoring Internet marketing or platforms by lead counts is so last century...

HIPPOs want to count leads, while shoppers avoid forms. Who do you want to optimize for?

Think about it.

Joe, If you aren't going to score your interactive marketing efforts on Conversions (calls, chats, emails, foot traffic...leads) then what do you propose success metrics should be? So far I haven't been able to make impressions, time on site, and bounce rate pay the power company. Not that those aren't important metrics...they can be a precursor to leads. For companies like autotrader.com however, their function is lead generation and anything else they provide is gravy...I guess I'm just wondering if they are trying to sell the gravy as the meal, is that a realization that they are not good lead providers and now want to be something else?

Hey if shoppers are avoiding forms why are there so many forms on dealer.com sites? (Sorry, I couldn't resist...that was meant in fun.) I think shoppers "avoid" forms because we either distract them much or don't give them enough clarity or reason to act now.
 

joe.pistell

Uncle Joe
Apr 7, 2009
3,988
1,511
113
First Name
Joe
Joe, If you aren't going to score your interactive marketing efforts on Conversions (calls, chats, emails, foot traffic...leads) then what do you propose success metrics should be? So far I haven't been able to make impressions, time on site, and bounce rate pay the power company. Not that those aren't important metrics...they can be a precursor to leads. For companies like autotrader.com however, their function is lead generation and anything else they provide is gravy...I guess I'm just wondering if they are trying to sell the gravy as the meal, is that a realization that they are not good lead providers and now want to be something else?

Hey if shoppers are avoiding forms why are there so many forms on dealer.com sites? (Sorry, I couldn't resist...that was meant in fun.) I think shoppers "avoid" forms because we either distract them much or don't give them enough clarity or reason to act now.
Hi Gayle,

Oops, I mis-spoke, I should have said:

"IMO, scoring Internet marketing or platforms EXCLUSIVELY by lead counts is so last century"

If you can't pay the rent by optimizing the Bounce rate, VDP impressions, T.O.S., Repeat visits, etc... I appreciate your P.O.V. but I can. In the end, we're both selling cars, it's simply my belief that I can sell more cars if I optimize content to please the silent majority. The funny part of this as I please the silent shopper more, they convert at a higher rate.
 
Reactions: 1 person