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Jared Hamilton
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Bryant Gibby

Bryant Gibby Used car manager

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Online pricing

     As I mentioned a few weeks ago, we are in the process of making some changes to our new car pricing strategy. Thanks to a lot of feedback, it looks like we are going to move forward with implementing a completely different strategy for pricing cars online.

 

     As we have been ironing out the details with these changes, we have questioned whether or not it is a good idea to keep our prices for our new inventory on the dealership's website. Being a bottom-line-price store, it has always seemed like the logical thing to post your best price on our website along with photos and info on the car. We now feel like our competition is using our prices from our website to determine where we have certain lines priced and they are using those prices in order to one-up us with their internet pricing. We are pretty sure we want to take our pricing off our website so we can keep them guessing but we are reluctant because we know having that information posted is a big deal to most consumers. Another reason why we think it is the best route to go, is because one of the biggest online dealerships in the state ( different manufacturer ) don't price their cars on their website either. But who's to say we will see the same success.

 

     So.... What is the best solution? I know that most local dealers keep their prices posted but I would be curious to hear about any success stories on the contrary. Let me know what you guys think.

Chris Costner
Great posting Bryant. I have always believed in having prices posted on all inventory. Now I understand you are a bottom-line-price store and that is where I become torn with what to do as well but let me see if I can make sense of this comment for you. I can relate somewhat with a bottom-line-price structure with my ZAG customers. I do know that there are immediate competitors in the area that are constantly checking on my inventory on how I have it priced and adjusting their sails accordingly. It happens and you may lose some deals. Thinking more about it, the same mentality is being used when pricing used car inventory to market with the tools available to us these days. So my thought on the competition pricing to you is don't beat yourself up over it. Now going back to inventory posted without pricing, I think that is just creating an extra hurdle for your BDC/Internet department to get over before finally setting the appointment. Actually it will be the first hurdle I am willing to bet and that is, "What's the price...?" I agree with you that it is a big deal to most consumers to have pricing posted. This is where "transparency" starts to play a big part in your daily operations. Without it, it seems controlling to the customer, which already has “negative experience” written all over it in my opinion. I also understand there is a big dealer in the area hitting big numbers doing just the opposite. I would consider that the exception and not the norm by no means. Thanks for allowing my two cents and I know you will figure out what is best for your store and market. Hopefully I could bring another angle to look at the situation with. Good Selling.
Kevin Bookbinder
I think it is a relatively common dilemma Bryant. I have to echo Chris and side with disclose your price. Looking at it from the consumers point of view, they have navigated to your website to determine two or hopefully three things. First "Do you have what they are looking for" second "How much is it going to cost" and hopefully third "How do I get to the dealership" Unfortunately from a consumer perspective a "call for price" usually equates to the thought "We are hiding something". If your pricing forces the market down, you have the advantage of having structured your store for the pricing whereas your competitors are forced to accept your pricing with out being financially positioned to maintain your pricing policy..... I hope that made sense ;-)
Chris Costner
Perfect sense Kevin. I have to agree and well said.
Patrick Downes
You need to be more proactive and less reactive. Competitive price and good customer service will allow you to dominate your area and bring in folks from the competition. The very few that will do anything for that last $100... let them go
Craig Waikem
I am not ready, in my market, to disclose prices without a lead.

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