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Vehicle Content & Data Plug-in platforms - are they needed?

Discussion in 'Online Marketing & Best Practices' started by Jeff Kershner, Aug 18, 2017.

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  1. Jeff Kershner

    Jeff Kershner
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    First Name:
    Jeff
    Dealer or Company Name:
    DealerRefresh & Mercedes-Benz of Hagerstown
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    Studies show that once the customer visits your dealership website, they're typically much lower in the shopping/purchase funnel. Visiting over 18 points of research, it's easy to believe the shopper has all the information needed about the particular vehicle they're considering. If you write great sellers notes and capture all the right photos, you're able to showcase the features and options included on each piece of inventory. However, it's near impossible to showcase ALL the data - especially when it comes to all the technology newer cars posses. There's also data points such as exterior and interior dimensions, actual cost of ownership, etc. But how important is it to have all this data house on your dealership website, especially right on the VDP versus a make model landing page.

    There are a few services out there that provide vehicle data and content that plug right into your dealership website.

    One of the longtime suppliers of this type of service is PureCars. I was a huge advocate of this service back in the day. Their "value reports" provides a tool for not only your dealership website but it was also a solid showroom tool.

    beaman_purecars_valuereporting.jpg
    beaman_purecars_valuereports_2.jpg


    Edmunds has a newer feature that provides the shopper with information like cost of ownership, dimensions and dials in on the all the different options included on that vehicle.

    2017-08-16_17-16-50.jpg

    Edmunds_vehicle_report.jpg

    Kelly Blue Book offers their Price Advisor Report - this doesn't get into the options as it's more of a Price Analysis.

    2017-08-16_17-30-51.jpg

    2017-08-16_17-31-42.jpg

    Here's one that's been around for a LONG time - AdvantaSTAR. It's more specific to new vehicles but I believe they have a used vehicle feature as well. Anyone still using this?

    2017-08-16_17-40-38.jpg

    2017-08-16_17-37-06.jpg


    Are you hosting any of these services on your dealership website and if so, are they bringing enough value. What type of increased performance are you seeing and how are your tracking it?
     
    #1 Jeff Kershner, Aug 18, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2017
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  3. Chris Leslie

    Chris Leslie
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    Chris K
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    Yeah it looks nice but What is the problem this is solving and how do we know if it’s really solving it?

    i guess we should start with the end in mind and ask ourselves what is the goal of having a tool like this?

    More time on site/page?
    More phone calls?
    More web forms?
    Etc...
     
  4. yagoparamo

    yagoparamo
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    @Chris Leslie@Chris Leslie

    It solves the data points needed for that guy (and he is out there!) that needs to cross all the Ts and make sure he reads every piece of data there is.

    If the data is not clutter in the VDP but just accessible via a link or an expand window, then it is great because it doesn't take anything from a clean page but still offers everything to the analytical guy.

    As far as price point goes and market price positioning I think it is a way to offer some reassurance that the pice is "fair" or "normal". It solves two problem in my mind; one the guy that just doesn't know if this tis too much or a good deal, and also it stops (not all the time!) the guy that offers you $15k than your asking price (but again, because he just doesn't know)
     
  5. AWNick

    AWNick
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    Nick
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    AutoWebing
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    When a user is on the VDP, we don't want to overload them with specs information. Our data shows that many users jump into a VDP to quickly view photos and the more pertinent information like equipped engine, transmission, mpg, etc., and submit leads. Less than 2% of our VDP visitors on our most recent client site actually view specs.

    Using third party pricing data is a powerful way to give your website visitors the confidence to submit a lead. If you can successfully integrate this data into your VDP or SRPs without disrupting the flow or style of your page, you're in good shape.
     
  6. Alexander Lau

    Alexander Lau
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    It's all about conversion optimization, or conversion rate optimization (CRO). A system for increasing the percentage of visitors to a website that convert into customers, or more generally, take any desired action on a webpage (intent).

    https://moz.com/learn/seo/conversion-rate-optimization

    4. Better user experience: When users feel smart and sophisticated on your website, they tend to stick around. CRO studies what works on your site. By taking what works and expanding on it, you'll make a better user experience. Users who feel empowered by your site will engage with it more — and some may even become evangelists for your brand.

    Analytics Method
    Using analytics-based CRO can answer important questions about how users engage with your site. Quantitative analysis provides information like:
    • Where people enter your site, i.e., which webpage they land on first
    • Which features they engage with, i.e., where on a page or within your site do they spend their time
    • What channel and referrer brought them in, i.e., where they found and clicked on a link to your site
    • What devices and browsers they use
    • Who your customers are (age, demographic, and interest)
    • Where users abandon your conversion funnel, i.e., where or during what activity do users leave your site
    This information will let you know where to focus your efforts. By putting your effort into the pages most engaged with and valuable to your users, you’ll see the largest impact.

    People Method
    Doing your quantitative analysis first is especially valuable if you have a large site with diverse content as it lets you know, from a numbers perspective, where to focus your efforts. But now that you know how users interact with your site, you can look into the “why” behind their behavior.

    This people-focused method, known as qualitative data analysis, is more subjective. You'll need the quantitative data discussed above to identify who you should be asking. You can't optimize for all users, so optimize for your ideal user — that is, the user it's most important to have as a customer.

    Ways to get this data:
    • On-site surveys
    • User testing
    • Satisfaction surveys
    Qualitative analysis helps optimize for conversions by providing information about users such as:
    • Why did they engage? Why did they originally decide to visit your site or navigate to a specific page? What about the page or product appealed to them?
    • What do they think your site offers that makes you different from competitors? Is there a feature or service offered by your company that makes buying from you a better experience?
    • What words they use to describe your products, services, and the pain points they address? How would they describe your product or service to a friend? In essence, how do they talk about what you do?
    There are certain things that raw data alone can't tell you about what brought a user to your site or how to make their experience better. But when you combine this information with your analytics data, you can gain a much better understanding of the pages on your site that present the best opportunities to optimize and engage the audience you'd like to target.

    -----------------------------

    That said, your platform provider had better have some decent UX people in-house. IMO, there are platforms out there that do a better job than others. They're popular and eating the lunch of the corporate titans for a reason, Dealer Inspire is the cleanest and best IMO. As for user testing, that should also be part of the responsibility of the platform provider. Soooooo... which ones do it and which ones don't? Dealers need to be able to hold their platform providers responsible and accountable for the two aforementioned methods. The platform providers do not want to hear that. :-)
     
    #5 Alexander Lau, Aug 28, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2017
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  7. Penina Rothner

    Penina Rothner
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    I definitely agree with what was said earlier, that a good user experience is integral to converting more leads. Customers enter your website at different stages of their buying journey- some are doing basic preliminary research, while others are close to purchasing a car. These people are looking for different information, and your website is expected to be able to provide each of them with the information they want.

    The most ideal way to deal with this is to optimize your website to provide a highly customized and tailored experience to each visitor. This can be done manually, or with AI-powered software. The importance of this personalization cannot be overstated- if a customer doesn't receive the information or experience they want on one website, they will move on to the next. That's a loss for you. Perhaps the answer therefore is not to decide on one model for your entire website and apply it across the board, but instead to customize it to different types of or even individual people. Do you think this is realistic, and if not, how else do you give this type of personalized user experience?
     
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  8. emiltsch

    emiltsch
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    Eric
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    We're using the PureCars SRP/VDP widgets and I don't see a lift in performance from it. Plus, users are taken off the page and that frustrates me as the site owner and as a user. I'd prefer the info they're providing (which I like a lot) be injected into the site experience, not away from it.

    We do use the trade in banners within our site and that does drive quality trade in leads on a daily basis.
     

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