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Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Cars.com Acquisition of DealerRater Benefits Consumers and Car Dealers

Why Cars.com Acquiring DealerRater Is A Good Thing For Everyone 


Cars.com Acquires DealerRater.com:
This is Good for Both Car Dealers and Consumers

Recent news of the Cars.com acquisition of DealerRater.com is creating quite a stir because an automotive ratings and reviews GIANT will be born when the transaction is complete.

   
The deal closed in September 2016. The new Cars.com will have the largest car dealer consumer reviews platform in the automotive industry, with more than 4 million car buying and servicing consumer submitted reviews. While there surely are many dealerships as well as sales personnel who have seen this news, many have surely passed it by, not thinking twice. However, there should be a pause, because this acquisition will effect every facet of the auto industry. The greatest eventuality with this acquisition (if done correctly), will be that car dealerships with good reputations will have the opportunity to let more automotive consumers than ever before know about their hard earned reputation for better customer service.
     

Online reviews are more important than ever before for all consumer products.

      
Automotive reviews are even more important to car buying and servicing consumers because the purchase of a new or used vehicle is usually their second largest financial commitment, second only to purchasing a home. In addition, this importance of reviews rings even more true when talking about service departments. And, unknown to many auto sales professionals, individual dealership sales personnel can be reviewed by car buyers and service customers. Simply put, reviews are a way for consumers to feel more comfortable throughout every dimension of the dealership and their ownership life cycle. Since 71% of customers surveyed say they bought their vehicle because they liked, trusted and respected their salesperson, this comfort level can effect your dealership both positively as well as negatively. Having said that, there’s a few things that need to be understood to help better attract and serve the “review educated” consumer.
    

With reviews so important to the consumer, it’s no wonder that 85% of customers make up their mind about purchasing a vehicle before they leave the house.

        
Customer reviews are a web enabled extension of the "word of mouth" effect that results in a comfortable community for automotive consumers. This acquisition could make it easier and more effective for all dealerships to better improve and monitor their customer services and business procedures that make or break the dealership's reputation. The new Cars.com will allow the dealership to keep better track of their reviews throughout a multitude of websites more efficiently, which has been difficult for most car dealers in recent years.
      

It is important to know that dealerships have the option of being alerted when a negative review is submitted by one of their customers. This feature helps the dealership take more effective control of their reputation, resolve customer concerns when they occur and promptly provide resolution. With individual sales personnel reviews, consumers can see how well rated each staff member is before ever walking through the door. Matching the customer with the car salesperson who best suits their preferences and needs. Many automotive sales professionals may believe that sales personnel reviews are a worrisome item to have available for customers, however this can be used to provides a two prong approach to keeping your dealership ahead of others. It provides salesperson accountability and a personnel driving source for your dealership. The individual positive reviews leave the consumer feeling comfortable and the negative reviews allow management to reassess which staff members are working out best for their sales teams.
      

This acquisition will create a plethora of opportunities for dealerships to improve the results from their digital marketing strategy.

With the amount of dealership advertising budget currently allocated to paid search engine advertising (SEM), this acquisition will allow for a more efficient review strategy that SHOULD (if done properly), increase the impact of a dealership's good reputation and more importantly, increase sales at good dealerships while steering more consumers away from the handful of bad apples that besmirch the reputation of the entire industry.