As the United States automotive continues to transform, record numbers of Americans are choosing to buy used cars. This is great news for used car dealerships. However, with this increase in demand comes an increase in the need for a steady supply of well-priced used vehicles.
This need for cars was a major concern for Michael Cavanaugh, Chief Operating Officer of CARite. CARite is a chain of 24 dealerships spread across 10 states. Cavanaugh said, ““When all you do is used cars, you need to source a lot of cars.”
Recently CARite switched to MAX Digital and now experience a significantly improved vehicle acquisition process.
Learn How CARite Improved Their Used Inventory Management with MAX Digital
Most used dealerships have similar problems sourcing cars. With a recent major expansion, this issue is particularly pressing for Cavanaugh. However, finding cars is just a small piece of the problem.
“One of our mottos is ‘Better Cars, Better Experience,’” Cavanaugh said. “We source late-model, low-mileage cars and price them at or below market.” With the increase in online car shopping, consumers are aware of the value of cars, leading used vehicle dealers like CARite to price their cars very close to market value.
To be able to price their vehicle appropriately, dealerships need to be able to buy at a fair price. Cavanaugh says, “We don’t have the luxury of paying too much and then making it up by selling for more. Finding the right cars at the right price is paramount to us.”
MAX Digital’s Inventory Management Software makes it easy to find cars for the right price. The software’s Acquisition function finds you nearby vehicles for sale based on your dealership’s sales history and market data.
Vehicles are appropriately priced by the Appraisal tool, so you get a fair price before you buy. With their focus on providing no hassle low pricing, this helps CARite get the most from their sales.
MAX doesn’t stop at inventory management. The MAX Content Generation Engine generates detailed VDPs and ads for your website. “One of the reasons we like MAX is that they not only have good market data before we purchase, but their program generates really good content and descriptions on each vehicle for the consumer,” Cavanaugh says.
MAX Digital: Helpful Software, Attentive Service
MAX Digital is more than just a software solution. Once you start working with MAX, you’ll get a full-service partner. It is this attribute that Cavanaugh enjoys the most.
Cavanaugh says, “It’s a really good value for us. They have been better to work with than any other tech vendor I work with… Every employee genuinely cares about you and wants you to be successful. MAXDigital is a core part of our business; we wouldn’t be as successful as we are without them.”
Every month, MAXDigital recognizes and celebrates a dealership that demonstrates exceptional performance through our “Dealership-of-the-Month” program. This month MAXDigital is honoring BMW of Murrieta as July’s Dealership-of-the-Month! We are celebrating them because of their commitment to MAX Digital Showroom and a culture of value-based selling. As a result, the team there has seen a 45% improvement in their average price drop since March. BMW of Murrieta is a growing and thriving dealership within the Hendrick Automotive Group, which has more than 100 dealerships throughout the United States, and is very involved with their local BMW Club. We look forward to watching their steady growth, and continued use of MAX Digital Showroom to build trust and transparency with customers by selling based on quality and value. Again, congratulations from the entire MAXDigital team!
The unfortunate truth is, people just don’t trust car salespeople. They consistently rank as one of the least trusted professions in the US, and there’s one central reason why: people need to buy cars, but don’t like being sold to.
MAXDigital wants to help you change the narrative of automotive sales.
Innovations in information technology have changed the automotive market in profound ways. These same changes have created new opportunities for salespeople to build trust with customers. The MAX Digital Automotive Merchandising Tool lets you train your sales team to become automotive experts who can gain the confidence and sales of modern consumers.
How Your Automotive Sales Team Can Gain Customer Trust
88% of consumers use the internet to shop for cars, and increasingly, larger portions of the decision-making process happen online. These shoppers are looking for honesty and information once they make their way to the dealership. They’re looking for someone to facilitate their purchase, not a salesperson. MAX Digital gives sales staff the power to give consumers the facts they desire.
Today’s car buyer isn’t willing to just take your word on a car. They want to know the value of things before they buy. They’ll want to know what they can expect from the vehicle, and they’ll do much of their research before stepping through the doors of your dealership.
MAX for Website creates highly informative Vehicle Detail Pages, and MAX Ad distributes thorough ads to hundreds of third party websites, giving them all the information they need. These pages also list heavily supported prices, letting consumers know they’re getting a great deal.
Be an Expert
With the amount of homework consumers do before they stop in the dealership, it is very likely they know more about the vehicle they want than you do. It is almost impossible for every salesperson to know everything about all the cars on your lot.
MAX Digital Showroom puts this information at your sales team’s fingertips through their smart devices. Consumers can easily take on any question or concern with confidence thanks to MAX’s effective platform.
A simple method of gaining trust is to connect with your customer on a personal level. Don’t just talk at them, but listen to them. By listening, you can get a better idea of what they want from their new vehicle. This helps you better craft the experience to the individual and helps the customer feel like you have their interests in mind. People in the digital age are having individualized buying experiences. Why should they want automotive sales to be any different?
Consumers need information. MAX Digital provides your automotive sales team with a unique tool to gain customer trust by providing transparent and thorough information. Schedule a product demonstration to see what our software can do for you.
Every month, MAXDigital recognizes and celebrates a dealership that demonstrates exceptional performance through our “Dealership-of-the-Month” program. This month MAXDigital is honoring North Park Lexus San Antonio with our June Dealership-of-the-Month! We are celebrating them because of their exceptional achievements in consistently using MAX Digital Showroom to sell their vehicles at internet price. North Park Lexus San Antonio is part of the Kahlig Auto Group, which has 14 dealerships throughout New Braunfels and San Antonio Texas area. Not only is North Park Lexus San Antonio a fast growing dealership but they are very active within their community, giving back to more than 35 organizations. We look forward to watching their continuing growth, and constant use of MAX Digital Showroom to sell at asking price. Again, congratulations from the entire MAXDigital team!
As information technology makes information easier to access, more major purchase decisions are being moved online. Automotive sales are not unaffected by this trend.
Give Shoppers the Information they Need
Long gone are the days where auto consumers shopped around at multiple dealerships. Research shows that 71 percent of people buy the vehicle they are already interested in when they visit a dealership. 46 percent of customers only visited one dealership after having made the decision online. These modern buyers want transparency and the ability to do their own research.
Driving sales is dependent on giving customers the information they want, where they’re looking for that information. MAX Ad makes this simple by integrating with your used car inventory management system. From there, the MAX Content Generation Engine builds customer-relevant ads.
The ads generated are easy to read, and broken up to answer the questions that the average consumer wants to know using MAX Ad’s optimal format description. These ads include images, detailed vehicle information, and a pricing justification that lets potential buyers know they’re getting a fair price.
MAX Ad Helps You Meet Your Customers Where They Are
MAX Ad gets these ads to in-market shoppers by sending them to over 200 third-party websites. 78 percent of people use pages and apps like Cars.com, Autotrader, or Kelley Blue Book in their shopping process. By putting relevant ads on these sites, MAX Ad brings your inventory information to where consumers are looking and gives it the edge it needs to stand out.
Merchandise your inventory with ease, thanks to MAX Ad, and other tools available at MAX Digital. Schedule a demo to see what our software can do for you. You can also contact us at (888) 841-0884 to learn more.
Every month, MAXDigital recognizes and celebrates a dealership that demonstrates exceptional performance through our “Dealership-of-the-Month” program. This month MAXDigital is honoring Grainger Nissan of Savannah with our May Dealership-of-the-Month! We are celebrating them because of their exceptional achievements in managing their inventory and closing trade appraisals. Grainger Nissan is a family owned and operated Dealership located in Savannah, GA. The Grainger Automotive Group also has a Honda Store located in Savannah and a Nissan Store located in Anderson, SC. The Grainger Family has been in the car business for over 40-years and we appreciate their efforts across all of their stores. We look forward to watching their continuing growth in the future. Again, congratulations from the entire MAXDigital team!
The digital age is creating a new type of car-buyer: a consumer that is well-versed, widely knowledgeable, and armed with an entire internet of information about the car they are interested in — all before they even enter your dealership doors.
You still need to sell vehicles, and you need your sales team to be able to sell them without offering extreme discounts and price drops just to make a sale. How do you do that?
MAX Digital Showroom levels the playing field between sales representatives and customers by making dealer employees product experts from their first day on the job. Keep reading to learn how MAXDigital puts the power back in your sales method.
Make the Sale, and Make it Easier With MAX Digital Showroom
MAX Digital Showroom makes selling vehicles easier by creating understanding and allowing for transparency between dealer and consumer. Here are some ways MAX Digital Showroom empowers your sales team, while respecting your customers:
- A Team of Product Experts: With tools like our MAXDigital window stickers, or MAX mobile app, your sales team will have instant access to each vehicle’s Value Report. That means instant access to Kelley Blue Book value, mileage, options and packages, and comparisons to prices for the rest of the market. That means confidence in your prices, and the ability to justify them for any customer that may come in with doubts or reservations. That means an honest, easy sale.
- Who Can Think On Their Feet: A member of your sales team is walking the lot with your customer, headed towards the car they called about. In the moment, the customer decides they may be more interested in a different car on your lot. How does your sales employee make a sale on a vehicle they aren’t prepared to sell? MAX Digital Showroom has your solution — a quick scan of the window sticker puts vehicle highlights and history in the palm of your sales member’s hands.
- And Answer Any Questions Asked of Them: MAXDigital helps dealers make sure prices are justified and sensible — but every customer who walks on your lot may not know that. If a customer asks you why your vehicle is priced higher than the same vehicle at a different dealership, you’ll be able to show them the option packages and accessories that make your car worth the extra cash.
Learn More About MAX Digital Showroom and Other Tools
Still not sure how MAX Digital Showroom might work for you? Set up a product demonstration with MAXDigital today to see how our tools work with your inventory. We’re looking forward to helping you confidently price and sell your new and used vehicles.
CHICAGO — April 11, 2016 — MAXDigital, a premium end-to-end software provider for automotive dealers, released new strategic dealer research on the subject of trust and transparency in the digital age. In conjunction with Erickson Research, MAXDigital surveyed U.S. dealers during the 2017 National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Convention.
Key findings from the research include:
- Dealers are overestimating their trust by customers. Nearly 70 percent of dealers said their customers have a high level of trust in their salespeople. That is a huge disconnect from the December 2016 Gallup poll that showed just 9 percent of consumers have a high level of trust in car salespeople.
- Customers are not only driven by price; they’re looking for value. Only 21 percent of dealers completely agreed that customers were most concerned about getting the lowest price on a vehicle. This closely aligns with a consumer study that found 79 percent of consumers bought because they were getting quality and value at a fair price, versus only 21 percent that bought on price alone.
- Salespeople are not completely knowledgeable about all the cars they sell. Only 35 percent of dealer respondents said their salespeople are completely familiar with all the cars they sell.
- Customers do their research before arriving at the dealership. 8 out of 10 dealers said customers arrive— either most of the time or always— at the dealership having thoroughly researched car options.
- Customers sometimes know more than the salesperson. 61 percent of respondents said customers either sometimes, most of the time, or always know more about a vehicle they are considering than the sales team.
- Dealers are providing large discounts on price. 56 percent of dealers are dropping price $500 or more per vehicle during the sale. Another 11 percent don’t know their average “drop.”
“This research highlights the need for dealers to recognize that their sales processes may no longer match customer expectations or pre-conceived notions,” said MAXDigital CEO Steve Fitzgerald. “Consumer buying habits have changed and it appears that many dealers haven’t addressed the need to become product experts and to sell based on quality and value, instead of price.”
Nearly 400 U.S. dealers completed the survey in January 2017 before and during the 2017 NADA Convention. Respondents included General Mangers, Dealer Principals, Internet Managers and Used Car Managers.
Access the full report and findings here: www.maxdigital.com/trust.
MAXDigital provides cloud-based software and mobile applications to the automotive industry. As the industry’s premium end-to-end software solution for automotive dealers, MAXDigital empowers thousands of dealerships across the U.S. to manage inventory, increase gross profits and sell more cars through digital retailing. Founded in 2001 with the FIRSTLOOK inventory management product, the MAXDigital suite of products now includes the innovative MAX Ad®, a content generation and distribution system, MAX for Website®, a vehicle value and content creator for dealer websites, and MAX Digital Showroom®, a real-time inventory and pricing tool for desktop and mobile that builds trust and transparency with customers. For more information visit MAXDigital.com.
Profitability begins well before cars are moving off your lot. The foundation of a solvent auto dealership rests with its ability to manage its inventory in a way that sets up both the customer and salesman for success.
Inventory management is an often underlooked component of profitability. Operating in the black involves more than just touting the features of a car and offering some generous financing.
There are several ways in which an inventory management system can provide a boost to your bottom line.
How to Boost Your Profits with Inventory Management Software
Knowledge of inventory
Having a complete knowledge of your inventory involves far more than simply knowing which cars are parked on your lot at any given time. It includes knowing which cars should be there based on your market demographic.
Different cars sell better in different areas, and an effective inventory management system can align your sales with the needs of your customer base.
Pricing a car on your lot is not just a way to tempt the customer. It’s a way of protecting your bottom line and ensuring profitability. Too many dealerships fall victim to the “double discount” due to inefficient pricing from the onset.
An inventory management system can leverage real-time market data to help you price your cars in a way that is competitive to the market, comparable to third-party applications and protective of your assets.
It’s easy to overlook trade-in values and used car acquisitions when speaking about profitability. Just offer the Kelley Blue Book value to get the customer on the hook, right?
You need the proper leverage to negotiate competitively and that entails granular details such as trim levels and upgrades.
Inventory Management Made Easy
Inventory management software from MAXDigital uses advanced analytics and intuitive decision-making tools to achieve increased gross profits by maximizing inventory turnover.
It’s never been easier or more efficient to acquire, appraise, and price inventory, all while tracking every vehicle that comes in and off the lot in real time. You’ll start acquiring the right vehicles for your market, pricing them appropriately and watching them practically drive themselves off the lot.
The most important automotive tools are not a socket wrench or tire jack. They are the ones used to acquire, appraise, merchandise and sell cars.
Below is just a sampling of the many automotive tools you’ll find at MAXDigital.
Does Your Dealership Make the Most of These Automotive Tools?
- Vehicle pricing tool. A vehicle that is priced based on assumptions and estimations is one that is likely priced incorrectly. A vehicle pricing tool uses actual data to help dealerships price inventory based on market research and sales data. Not only can this tool help you remain competitive, it can provide greater transparency for consumers.
- Appraisal tool. A trade-in is more than just a blue book value. It’s an opportunity to maximize gross profits. This tool leverages the power of comprehensive and accurate vehicle market data so dealerships know what to buy, how many of them to buy, and what price to pay for them.
- Vehicle display page. A vehicle display page (or VDP) is perhaps the most important tool in today’s information-centric marketplace. Online visibility is enhanced when all the requisite information such as fuel economy, options and upgrades is visible on a single page.
- Inventory management. An inventory management tool helps increase gross profits by reducing inventory turnover time and generates data about which cars are right for any given market location.
- Digital retailing. Easily create web pages, digital showrooms, and relevant ads by integrating this platform with your inventory management tool.
- Pricing proof points. Accurate data is used to generate reports that justify and explain why a car is priced a certain way. Not only does it protect your bottom line, but it cultivates trust and builds transparency for the consumer.
- Online reputation management. Defend your name and business against online attacks. Some 87 percent of car shoppers consulted online reviews when choosing a dealership to visit according to one recent survey. With consumers placing such a high level of trust in social media and online reviews, this tool is critical to reducing or eliminating negative reviews and restoring your reputation.
- Analytics. Tracking the actions and behaviors performed on your website allow you to customize marketing efforts accordingly.
Open Up The MAXDigital Toolbox
The key to the MAXDigital automotive toolbox is also the key to maximizing your marketing and sales strategies. Explore some of our other tools, or better yet — schedule a free demonstration to see these tools in action.