The Importance of Maintaining Robust Inventory Content for Used CarsFebruary 4th, 2016 by MAXdigital
As with all industries, technology changed the dynamics of managing an automotive dealership. Greater access to information on the Internet transformed how people shop—81% conduct online research before purchase. New software companies and applications help automate and account for various facets of the business, including inventory. It has become imperative that general managers realize the importance of maintaining robust inventory content, especially for their used cars. That is—in no small part—due to the facts that selling used cars is often more profitable than selling new cars and providing ample content lends authority, which is recognized and rewarded by search engines. So, what does it mean to create “robust inventory content”? It’s important to know the basics of what people seek when they conduct their research. AdWeek highlighted a few key points for how consumers learn about your product (in this case: used car inventory):
- Reading clear product descriptions
- High-level overviews supplemented by details
- Multiple high-quality images
Robust Used Car DescriptionsYou need to leverage keywords and relevant information that address a consumer’s query. For dealerships, this means including make, model, trim, specifications, features, technology, options, and warranty. By making these details simple to navigate and easy to read without sacrificing the necessary details that satisfy a potential customer’s questions, you will accomplish two things: first, you’ll become a resource people trust; second, you’ll address the correct verbiage to better rank in search engines. Add high-quality images to create a better user experience, which will indirectly have a positive effect on your website’s authority and ranking. But, why the emphasis on used cars? There’s a huge market (real and potential) for selling late-model used cars. According to a Consumer Reports’ annual Car Brand Perception Study, two-thirds (65%) of people they surveyed said they are more likely to consider purchasing a used car as compared to several years ago. The survey also found that 71% were likely to consider a late-model used vehicle as an alternative to purchasing a new one. Okay. So there are the people who may be a likely buyer of a used car. What may be more convincing are the actual numbers:
- In 2014, the total number of used cars expected to be sold was 41.2 million.
- CPOs (Certified Pre-Owned vehicles) were a driving force behind recent years’ surge of sales.
- In 2013, CPO models helped drive a dealer’s used vehicle profit margins to $2,361, which was nearly double what the margins were for new vehicles sold in 2012.
- In 2013, 2.1 million CPOs were sold.
- You should know what the biggest selling vehicles are in your particular market, as well as your historical record of make and model sales.
- You need access to real-time data that lets you know how to effectively and accurately appraise, price, and merchandise inventory.
The Perfect Tools for Used Car Inventory ContentMAXDigital’s Inventory Management Platform, formerly known as FirstLook, utilizes advanced analytics and decision making tools, guided by best practices, to generate faster turn and higher gross profits of your dealership’s inventory. This often proves most particularly helpful for used car inventory, which often does not receive the same sort of custom attention that new-year models enjoy (e.g. content team creating detailed pages dedicated to each model). This Inventory Management Platform is your ideal tool for several reasons:
- It efficiently sources the best-selling vehicles in your market.
- It has an appraisal tool that helps you close more trade-ins and maximize gross profits by utilizing an incredibly accurate source of vehicle market data (61% of a dealer’s used car inventory come from trade-ins).
- It offers real-time market and wholesale data from the automotive industry’s most thorough and reliable data set, allowing you to appraise, price, and merchandise inventory from the desktop to your mobile device.