January 7, 2014
Six in Sixty Seconds

auto-dealership Today’s News in Context — January 7

Online Show­rooms & Dig­i­tal Deal­er­ships Chang­ing How Con­sumers Buy

  • Big TV screens con­trolled by touch­pads on the floor, instead of cars
  • Audi and oth­ers think this is the future of auto retailing

Intan­gi­ble Con­sumer Con­fi­dence Reflected in Index Drop

  • Eco­nomic & finan­cial stats always seem to be on shaky ground
  • Con­sumer Con­fi­dence Index fell to 7 month low in November

2014 Sales of 16.4 M to Be Dri­ven by Prod­uct not Spiffs and Ifs

  • Over 16M in New Car Sales pre­dicted for 2014; the most since 2007

Mobile Apps Strug­gle to Find Rev­enue Stream & Content

  • Niche media & providers search­ing for ways to gain money from apps
  • Now seek­ing to charge sub­scrip­tion price from 99 cents to $50

Bat­tery Stor­age Could Bring Elec­tric Car Own­ers Profit

  • Stor­ing renew­able energy now a pos­si­bil­ity for elec­tric car owners
  • Could change the way peo­ple look at elec­tric cars & utilities

Fiat Finally Gains Con­trol of Chrysler

  • Gets full con­trol of Chrysler Group LLC in a $4.35 bil­lion deal
  • Helps clear the way for con­sol­i­da­tion of the two automakers


VIDEO: Make the Most of Your Online Reputation

Build­ing con­tent in the form of cus­tomer reviews on DealerRater.com is one great way to pos­i­tively man­age your online reputation.

VIDEO: Must-See Workshop at NADA
  Online Reviews Drive Sales and Service

Heather MacK­in­non, Vice Pres­i­dent of National Accounts at Deal­er­Rater invites you to attend her joint pre­sen­ta­tion with Jeff King, GM at Bozard Ford Lin­coln at NADA 2014. MacK­in­non and King will present a NADA work­shop enti­tled, “Online Reviews Drive Sales and Service.”

VIDEO: Reviews and Service
  Service Reviews Can Drive Service Revenue

Put a process in place that gets your cus­tomers to com­mu­ni­cate that the deal­er­ship is the best place to get repairs done, and watch your ser­vice busi­ness grow.

Dealer Pain Points

Imacon Color Scanner Online Gossip About Your Store Getting Ugly?

What’s the old say­ing about pub­lic­ity? Even bad pub­lic­ity is good, as long as you spell my name right.That may be true for Hol­ly­wood fame and mis­for­tune but that’s not the kind of rep­u­ta­tion that bodes well for long-term suc­cess in the car business.

Click here to learn to defend your online reputation.

measuring right metric for success Are You Measuring the Right Metric for Success?

Every­one wants to grow their busi­ness and increase prof­itabil­ity. But are you man­ag­ing the right met­rics to achieve success?

You may need to re-think your finan­cial tar­gets in a way that revs up your bot­tom line.

Click here to learn more.

mechanic Boosting Service Profitability

You ser­vice the vehi­cles you sell. Every­body gets that. But you have the best trained ser­vice tech­ni­cians in town. They can fix any­thing. Why not let them?

Click here to see a video that show­cases a deal­er­ship that uti­lizes its ser­vice techs tal­ent to the max.

Awards and Accolades  

Deal­er­Rater is mak­ing changes to its Dealer of the Year Award Pro­gram for the 2015 awards.    This highly com­pet­i­tive annual award pro­gram rec­og­nizes a select group of car deal­er­ships in the United States and Canada for out­stand­ing cus­tomer sat­is­fac­tion as expressed through con­sumer reviews posted on DealerRater’s web site for the pre­vi­ous cal­en­dar year.

The cri­te­ria for the 2015 Deal­er­Rater® Dealer of the Year Award Pro­gram will include the following:

  • Aver­age min­i­mum star rat­ing of 4.0 on Deal­er­Rater (cal­cu­lated quar­terly); with 5.0 as the high­est pos­si­ble rating
  • Min­i­mum of 25 reviews on Deal­er­Rater for the 2014 cal­en­dar year
  • At least one review on Deal­er­Rater per quar­ter dur­ing the 2014 cal­en­dar year

“With the planned changes to the 2015 pro­gram, we expect more deal­ers to become eli­gi­ble for the Dealer of the Year Awards,” said Chip Grueter, pres­i­dent at Deal­er­Rater.  “Hav­ing zero reviews in one par­tic­u­lar month will no longer put a deal­er­ship out of the run­ning as they will be able to make up for that zero score dur­ing the quar­ter. We look for­ward to an inten­si­fied com­pe­ti­tion next year.”



Build a Better Dealership

Toyota leasingWhat Could Off-Leasing Boom Mean in 2014?

Leas­ing turned things around for vehi­cle sales three years ago – fueled by low inter­est rates, ris­ing resid­ual val­ues, and sweet deals from automak­ers with lower monthly payments.

Now, more off-lease cus­tomers are start­ing to return to the mar­ket. Automak­ers, deal­ers, and lenders are start­ing to pon­der a few questions.

What does it mean for brand loy­alty and cus­tomer reten­tion? Off-lease cus­tomers tend to be good for reten­tion, but the com­pet­i­tive land­scape is get­ting intense with incen­tives and low-priced monthly pay­ments being promoted.

Gen­eral Motors entered the leas­ing race last month after being away for a long time.

Auto lenders have been soft­en­ing their under­writ­ing stan­dards this year. Leas­ing has been grow­ing in this envi­ron­ment. What if lenders have gone too far?

Click here to read about other issues being con­sid­ered includ­ing early buy­outs and the resid­ual value environment…….

The Fate of Fisker?  

The future of Fisker Auto­mo­tive might be viewed as a sym­bolic tale of where eco­nomic alliances – and com­pe­ti­tion – now stand between the US and China.

Two Chi­nese investors are vying to take over the trou­bled US maker of the lux­ury, extended range Fisker Karma.

While EV sales fig­ures in either coun­try are highly unlikely to meet the mil­lion unit EV mark set by Pres­i­dent Obama within the next two years, the race is still being run.

The invest­ments have been impressive:

  • An elec­tric ver­sion of the Saab 9–3 for sale in China is crit­i­cal for Saab a year out of its bank­ruptcy proceedings.
  • Tesla Motors has been work­ing hard to get its web­site domain name back in China from a Chi­nese owner.
  • Actor Leonardo DiCaprio announced he’s form­ing a team to par­tic­i­pate in a new EV rac­ing cir­cuit that will launch its inau­gural sea­son in Bei­jing next September.

Read all about the oppor­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges that EVs present for the US and Chi­nese auto markets……

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