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Topic: Marketing tips

How to use your Top-Rated Dealer Award to set your dealership apart

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on March 24, 2022

Earlier this month, we announced our 2022 CarGurus Top-Rated Dealer Awards recognizing an exclusive group of our dealer partners who earned an average dealer rating of 4.5 stars or higher and collected at least five verified customer reviews in 2021. Congratulations on delivering exceptional customer service day in and day out!

While earning the award isn’t easy, promoting your accomplishment – and putting it to work for your dealership – is! Here are our top tips for showcasing your award using the assets available to all winners on a premium listings package:

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Topics: awards, CarGurus news, Marketing tips, promotion, top rated dealer

Tips for staying on top of your game amid the supply chain crisis

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on December 13, 2021

The stories are similar across the country: lots are sitting empty, features are being deleted to secure inventory, and there are even reports of customers following vehicle transport trucks down the street to see if theirs are on it. We’re living in an unprecedented time amid one of the most bizarre supply chain crises the automotive industry has ever seen. The semiconductor and microchip shortages and global supply chain woes are expected to cost the industry more than $200 billion worldwide before it’s over, which could take many more months.

The good news is that the chips that are available are being reserved for higher-margin vehicles, and those are moving quickly when they do arrive. According to the CarGurus Vehicle Availability Index & Insights report, new days-on-market was down 13.5% from October and down 41.8% year-over-year. Used days-on-market rose 0.9% from October, which is to be expected with normal seasonal trends — however, year-over-year days-on-market is down 4.4%, showing that demand may be higher than seasonal trends would predict.

Ultimately, this means the few vehicles that are arriving are quickly turning a solid profit. Whatever strategies your dealership is using to manage the situation, there may be other ideas out there you haven’t considered. Here are some tips to help you make the most of the current situation and stay on top of the game.

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Topics: inventory, Marketing tips, supply

Tips for attracting more fixed ops business for your dealership

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on May 12, 2021

In a recent blog post, we discussed some of the challenges expected to hinder new car supply in the coming months, from microchip shortages to reduced supply of rubber and foam. After more than a year of enduring the Covid pandemic, it looks as though there are still some rocky waters to come in the months ahead.

From a dealer’s perspective, that makes now a prime time to review the fixed ops side of the business and look for opportunities for growth. When the going gets tough on the sales floor, it’s the service and parts departments that can keep profits flowing and dealerships afloat. But thanks to the new service standards forced by Covid that have become part of everyday life, the post-pandemic customer is going to have an entirely new set of expectations.

Here’s a checklist to help ensure your dealership’s fixed ops systems and workflows are optimized to attract business and meet the demands of today’s customers.

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Topics: fixed ops, Marketing tips, service

3 Tips for getting more sales during tax season

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on April 1, 2021

Tax season is here, stimulus checks are being issued, and people are itching for an excuse to leave their house as the weather warms up. If you’re like many dealers in America, you’re hoping to see the current circumstances result in a spike in sales. Though overall sales were down slightly in February compared to this time last year (15.7M compared to 16.6M last year), there’s still room for optimism.

A recent survey conducted by the National Retail Federation (NRF) backs this up. It found that 10% percent of Americans plan to put their refund toward a major purchase, such as a vehicle. Overall, more people are planning to put their refund into savings this year (54%), but it’s encouraging to note that the percentage of people who plan to spend it on a major purchase has held steady from last year.

But that doesn’t mean you can sit back and wait for shoppers to roll onto your lot (or through your virtual showroom). Here are three tips for bringing in more sales this season.

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Topics: Marketing tips, sales, stimulus, tax season

6 Questions to ask when optimizing your dealership’s online presence

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on February 4, 2021

A dealership’s online presence is pivotal to attracting and retaining potential customers but waiting for business to come to you through a static website doesn’t let you realize your full potential. There are many more digital tools at a dealer’s disposal, and learning which methods are most effective and underused in your local market can give you a leg up on the competition.

Here are some questions that might help you think differently about how you’re reaching your customers online and give you some ideas for how to cultivate this increasingly important aspect of your business.

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Topics: best practices, Marketing tips

Top dealer resources and stories from 2019

Posted by Sarah Pekala on December 16, 2019

It’s hard to believe that the decade is almost over. As we inch closer to 2020, we searched our Dealer Resource Center archive to find our favorite dealer resources, stories, and best practices we published in 2019. We hope to continue sharing interesting stories and valuable best practices like these well into 2020. Thank you for reading! We’re excited to share what’s to come in 2020.

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Topics: best practices, CarGurus Customers, digital marketing, Marketing tips, Navigate, reviews

4 ways to handle after-hours leads

Posted by Sarah Pekala on November 21, 2019

Your dealership hours might be nine to five, but your customers’ lives are not. More and more are doing their homework—73% of car shoppers research and compare exhaustively—and a lot of it is done online. Shoppers visit 13 auto sites on average. So it’s likely that their first contact with a dealership is after regular working hours.

The worst thing you can do with customer leads is let them sit, so there’s extra pressure on dealers to respond even when the physical shop may be closed. Here are four ways to capture and address those after-hours leads.

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Topics: digital marketing, leads, Marketing tips

A car dealer’s guide to videography

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on October 3, 2019

Dealers are no doubt aware of the impact a decent set of photos can have on a used car shopper, but video takes things one step further because it’s the next best thing to seeing a car in person. More and more retailers are using walkaround videos to show off their inventory, but as with any form of advertising, there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it.

We explain the dos and don’ts of producing a top-quality used car video that’s guaranteed to catch shoppers’ attention.

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Topics: digital marketing, Marketing tips, video

3 simple steps for improving your dealership website

Posted by Lydia Thein on September 9, 2019

Most dealers say their website is their highest converting tool. However, in my role as a CarGurus account manager, I often see a one-size-fits-all approach to dealership websites. They’re missing any personality or wow factor, and they can be difficult to use. Together, these website issues don’t make me want to explore the inventory on the site or submit a lead for a vehicle that fits my search.

There are plenty of ways to optimize your website for shoppers though, whether you maintain your website in house, or you rely on a website host to keep it up to date. Here are three things CarGurus Digital Consultants suggest doing to improve your website.

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Topics: best practices, digital marketing, Marketing tips, website optimization

Understanding the what and why of retargeting

Posted by Meg Bernazzani on June 12, 2019

You visit a website to check out a pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing. You leave without buying them. You visit ESPN to check a score, then sign into Facebook to look at your newsfeed, and so on. Suddenly, you notice there are ads for the very shoes you were looking at following you around the web.

Maybe you ignore the ads at first, but after seeing the shoe ad for the tenth time, you decide to go back to the website and buy them.

That’s retargeting at work—and we’ve probably all had this experience in today’s digital age.

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Topics: digital marketing, Marketing tips, retargeting