Search Online Car Dealerships For Better Car Deals

by Don Elliott on February 29, 2012

In a survey of car dealers by online lead-referral service AutoUSA Internet Sales Solutions, 31% of the car dealers said that they were having trouble keeping up with lead volume from the Internet. A whopping 72% of respondents plan on maintaining or increasing their Internet budgets this year.

Car dealers are stepping up their efforts to talk to potential buyers who do their research on the computer because they are having success putting them in the right cars. Consumers who shop online know what car they want to buy. Not only do they have a make or model in mind, but they know exactly which car in the car dealer’s inventory is the one for them. They also know how much they should pay. At the 2012 National Automobile Dealer’s Association (NADA) convention, new car dealers held workshops to address the profit squeeze created by Internet shoppers who are fully educated about incentives, car dealer costs, and available inventory. Shoppers have also researched car financing options, accessories, and extended warranty offerings.

Consumers can use Internet shopping websites like edmunds.com, kbb.com, autos.yahoo.com, carperks.net, autos.aol.com, nadaguides.com, cargurus.com, and truecar.com to do the research to find the right car and the best deal on that car.

Car dealers need to make a profit to stay in business. Internet shoppers have them rethinking the old car dealership model. Blow out promotions, salesperson pay plans, staffing, big media budgets, and salesperson pay plans are all being reviewed. Consumers who come to the car dealership through the Internet can find great deals as car dealers accept that their costs to sell to Internet leads are less.

Before the economic crisis in 2008, it was not unusual for car dealers to spend 25% or more of the gross profit on a car for advertising and marketing expense. Salespeople were encouraged to use a wide range of sales techniques to get the most possible profit on the car sale. A savvy Internet shopper is able to shortcut the sales process, keeping new and used car value under control. Unfortunately for the traditional salesperson, closing the sale is often simply completing the paperwork.

The AutoUSA survey also recognized that social media and reputation management are an important part of the consumers Internet automobile shopping experience. 40% of the surveyed car dealers plan on spending more money this year to make sure that their online presence is positive. They recognize that this powerful tool that provides an increasing source of customer traffic can also turn disastrous when Internet customers are mistreated or ignored.

If you are planning on buying a new car online, make sure to get an auto loan that is right for you!

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