New car pictures vs. Evox

Joshua McFall
Does anybody know of any studies that have been done that show value in having actual pictures of New Cars on your website, as opposed to say Evox images, which are accurate to the trim and color of the car? I have heard several opinions from various dealers on this, but haven't seen any actual studies done.
Jim Bell
I haven't seen any studies on it at all. I am a strong proponent of real photos. I look like it like online dating. Would you like to see the generic photo like what you have in your profile Josh, or would you like to see the real thing? We have a photographer/marketing major from one of the local universities taking all of our photos everyday. He takes 25-35 photos, even on the $2000 beaters. He takes all of the new cars also which is about 28-35 photos depending on if it has Nav, DVD, etc. We are seeing a lot more clicking within our website and the others with the real photos vs. when we didn't have them and had stock photos on our websites.
Bart Wilson
@Jim, great analogy. I agree that whenever possible take real photos of the car. The more the better. Customers know what a Tahoe looks like. They want to know what YOUR Tahoe looks like.
Dennis Galbraith
In some markets, like upstate New Jersey, actual photos are essential. So many dealers have played games with their online inventory, many customers are simply going to dismiss anything they can't see as not really there. The same problem exists in the minds of some consumers in every market, but with much less frequency in some than others. The fundamental challenge is finding the point when the cost of additional photos does not equal the value of the additional contacts generated. That is going to vary based on market and the kind of inventory you carry. That said, everything I've heard and seen backs up what Jim and Bart have said. It seems safer to have too many pictures until your tests show you should scale back, rather than the other way around.
Chris Irwin
What about if you live in a northern climate with snow and have no place to take photos inside of new cars? New cars could certainly (unfortunately) still be with you in the summer and you have photos with snow in them. I suppose you could simply take them again, however, it can be very time consuming. We sell about 80 used/month and take 30 photos per vehicle. That alone is 25 hours per week (upload pics and video walkaround)
Jim Bell
Chris- I totally feel your pain. We don't have any place to take pictures inside either. My photographer will run them and thaw them out and take a snow broom to them. I know that they aren't the quality that we have in the spring through fall, but we feel as a dealership that it is working for us. We sell 250/month and are able to keep up with it with a student from the local university working part time for us. If we can do it, I'm sure you guys can do it also.

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