October 18, 2013
Need to Know

lentz_jim22 Jim Lentz Speaks Out On Vehicle Autonomy

When the future arrives and we’re all driving/riding in autonomous cars, the Toy­ota badge may not be on the side of your ride, says Jim Lentz, Toy­ota North Amer­ica CEO.

Find out where Toy­ota stands when it comes to self-driving cars. [More]

The Detroit Bureau
battery_safety22 Battery Safety Guide Supports Safe Jump-Starting

Octo­ber is Bat­tery Safety Month, so the experts at AutoMD.com have com­piled a guide for safe jump-starting and instal­la­tion pro­ce­dures along with safe dis­posal and recy­cling instructions.

Deal­ers should be pass­ing this infor­ma­tion along to their cus­tomers. [More]

PR Newswire
pedestrian_safety22 Toyota, Ford Offer Pedestrian Safety Technology

Toy­ota and Ford are among the many car­mak­ers work­ing on sys­tems designed to pre­vent vehi­cle col­li­sions with pedes­tri­ans, as safety fea­tures take front and cen­ter with automakers.

Find out what these automak­ers are putting on board to pre­vent pedes­trian fatal­i­ties. [More]

The Detroit Bureau
TODAY: What Reviews Can Do for Service; Remarketing Roundup: This Week in Used Cars; More 
Video news that moves people and ideas

Best Practices for Leveraging Reviews

There’s a lot deal­ers can do to take full advan­tage of online reviews, like incor­po­rat­ing reviews in advertising.

heather-mackinnon-skype Best Practices for Leveraging Reviews
HEATHER MACKINNON VP of National Accounts, DealerRater
carrow-craig Leasing is On the Upswing
CRAIG CARROW Vice President of Automotive Solutions, Fiserv
winslow-dave You Can Predict Your Customer’s Next Step
DAVE WINSLOW Chief Digital Strategist, Dealer.com
VIDEO: Smart Reputation Management
  A Complete View of Your Dealership’s Reputation

Keep­ing track of all of the online chat­ter about your deal­er­ship can be dif­fi­cult. Luck­ily, there’s a way to view dealer reviews, Face­book, Yelp and Google from one dashboard…

Click here to watch video
VIDEO: What Do Shoppers Want?
Spinella_Art_site visit
  Wish Lists: Tapping Into What Car Shoppers Want

Auto indus­try ana­lysts and fore­cast­ers tend to only look at the auto mar­ket, but that “wish list” needs to expand for a broad look at what con­sumers care about.

Click here to watch video

Dealer Pain Points

tires Pumping Up Service Profitability

Are your ser­vice advi­sors on the look­out for wear and tear on the vehi­cles pulling into the ser­vice drive? All it takes is a few sec­onds to check the tread and add a line to the repair order.

Improv­ing the customer’s grip on the road also pro­pels prof­itabil­ity into the fast lane for both your ser­vice and parts departments.

Click here to learn more.

cashflow_1_10_2010-9_59_am.jpg Cash Flow Giving You a Sinking Feeling?

You’re mak­ing sales and show­ing a profit but the bank bal­ance is close to zero or worse! If you’re in choppy finan­cial waters, then some­where in the store there’s a Bermuda tri­an­gle swal­low­ing up cash and threat­en­ing to sink the dealership.

As cap­tains of the ship, deal­ers must locate the prob­lem and chart a course to calmer waters.

Click here to learn more.

Website Hits and Misses Website Hits and Misses

In base­ball, a bat­ter can’t just have a good-looking swing. He’s actu­ally got to hit the ball. It’s the same with websites.

Is your site even get­ting to first base with poten­tial cus­tomers? Is it strik­ing out too much? And just as in base­ball if a bat­ter is not per­form­ing well, the man­ager makes adjust­ments. You’re the man­ager of your Inter­net team.

Click here to learn more.

Doing It Right  

Recent stud­ies show that online searches for auto repair and main­te­nance have grown 66 per­cent in the past three years, and have even sur­passed growth in car and truck searches by eight per­cent in the past year alone.

“With the jump in online searches for auto main­te­nance and repairs, deal­ers need to dif­fer­en­ti­ate their ser­vice busi­ness from inde­pen­dent ser­vice cen­ters as well as local deal­er­ship com­peti­tors,” said Chip Grueter, pres­i­dent at Deal­er­Rater.

“We’ve care­fully designed our new Cer­ti­fied Ser­vice Cen­ter pages to pro­vide deal­er­ships with crit­i­cal cus­tomer con­nec­tion points – like ser­vice sched­ul­ing and spe­cial offers – while also ben­e­fit­ing from pri­or­ity place­ment in ser­vice cen­ter searches on our site and improved SEO for key auto repair search terms.”

DealerRater’s Cer­ti­fied Ser­vice Cen­ter Pro­gram enables auto deal­ers to boost the vis­i­bil­ity of their ser­vice cen­ter and grow their ser­vice busi­ness with a suite of tools fea­tur­ing a unique Ser­vice Cen­ter Review Page packed with service-specific infor­ma­tion, such as ameni­ties, hours, pho­tos, top-reviewed ser­vice employ­ees, as well as spe­cial offers and coupons.

Keep read­ing to learn more about the newly launched Cer­ti­fied Ser­vice Center!

Behind the Numbers  

Here’s the lat­est on used vehi­cle mar­ket trends from sis­ter pub­li­ca­tion Used Car Mar­ket Reports……

  • Used vehi­cle val­ues have been going in the direc­tion ADESA Ana­lyt­i­cal Ser­vices’ Tom Kon­tos has been fore­cast­ing for sev­eral months. Last month, the price soft­en­ing was caused by vol­ume increas­ing and retail used vehi­cle vol­ume drop­ping off.
  • Off-rental and risk units took a dif­fer­ent direc­tion than in the past and per­formed stronger than the over­all mar­ket in pricing.
  • NADA Used Car Guide expects the year to be a good one over­all – they think we can expect to see the year fin­ish with used vehi­cle value 0.5% to 1% higher than 2012’s record levels.
  • Two other trends were men­tioned – where loans are expected to go this year and the sur­pris­ing ratio of gaso­line prices to fuel effi­cient vehi­cles. Read on for more from this week’s remar­ket­ing roundup…..

Build a Better Dealership

bavis22_chrisDealers: You Can Streamline Steps to Increase Profits

At Issue:

Time and money wasted in the Ser­vice Depart­ment cost deal­ers and their deal­er­ships pre­cious dol­lars that could have been profit-makers.

The Back­story:

Unnec­es­sary steps taken in the Ser­vice Depart­ment waste time and crush finan­cial per­for­mance. Case in point: the aver­age vehi­cle repair order. Typ­i­cally, two to three hours of a repair order are wasted when techs have to hunt down parts and tools. This adds time and money to the aver­age vehi­cle repair order.

Chris Bavis, who teaches Fixed Oper­a­tions Parts at the NADA Acad­emy, wants deal­ers to under­stand the lost dol­lars that wasted time can pro­duce. Drill down fur­ther to find out what Chris sees as the sim­ple fix.

ipadShoppers Discover Their Perfect Car with new AutoTrader.com iPad App

A new AutoTrader.com iPad app gives car shop­pers the abil­ity to find their per­fect vehi­cle quickly and eas­ily – even if they don’t know exactly what they’re look­ing for.

“We designed this app around the con­cept of dis­cov­ery: we wanted to make it as easy as pos­si­ble for car shop­pers to find and learn about vehi­cles they have not even con­sid­ered,” said Jose Puente, direc­tor of mobile prod­ucts and strategy,AutoTrader.com. “With this new expe­ri­ence, you can start out with a very vague idea of what you want and the app does the work for you.”

Users of the new AutoTrader.com iPad app start their search with access to more than three mil­lion new and used vehi­cles listed for sale on AutoTrader.com from deal­ers and pri­vate sellers.

How does it work?

Smart Thinking - Pass It On  

At Issue:

As more and more peo­ple turn to third-party review web­sites to influ­ence their buy­ing habits – includ­ing auto­mo­biles – chances are you’re being over­looked if you are not tak­ing advan­tage of con­sumer reviews, both for sales and service.

Ser­vice Depart­ment Reviews are a Pow­er­ful Way to Pump up Profits!

Ryan Leslie, Direc­tor of Dealer Rep­u­ta­tion Strat­egy at DealerRater.com, urges deal­ers to pay atten­tion to the process of cus­tomer reviews – which can make a huge com­pet­i­tive advan­tage. Drill down fur­ther for case stud­ies and tips on build­ing your online reputation.

Consumer Trends Today  

The Sit­u­a­tion:

U.S. retail mcom­merce sales growth has been dra­matic over the past few years. As a result, eMar­keter has curated a roundup of key trends, sta­tis­tics and infor­ma­tion rel­e­vant to retail­ers who can no longer ignore the mobile lives of dig­i­tal shop­pers – and that includes auto­mo­tive deal­er­ships, par­tic­u­larly as it relates to the Ser­vice Depart­ment and after­mar­ket products.

How Will This Infor­ma­tion Affect Your Dealership?

Deal­ers, your Ser­vice Depart­ment, your after­mar­ket prod­uct pro­mo­tions and even your car sales are affected more and more by shop­pers using mCom­merce to research and buy while on the move daily. Drill down fur­ther to get the lat­est sta­tis­tics in a grow­ing trend that affects auto­mo­tive deal­er­ships more and more.

Dealer Resources 
Looking for the Best Leads in the business?
Helping dealers manage their reputation.
OneCommand deploys leading-edge communications technology proven to increase response rates, drive traffic, and lower marketing costs.
Partnering with AutoTrader.com alone gives your inventory unparalleled online exposure.
Fiserv offerings address every step of the automotive lending process.
Thrifty Car Sales
Find out what Thrifty Car Sales Franchise Opportunities can do for you.
AutoUSA Internet Sales Solutions brings the best-in-class tools to increase Internet sales and lower costs for automotive dealerships.
IMN is the digital marketing company that delivers branded newsletters and content for more than 3,000 organizations worldwide, combining custom, vertically-oriented content with advanced publishing technology and services.
vAuto's Provision™ suite of inventory management tools is the auto industry's leading solution to help dealers increase used vehicle sales, profitability and return on investment.
Turn-key automotive Internet marketing on one platform.
NADA University
One Source, Endless Possibilities, 24/7.

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