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Russ Chandler

Russ Chandler Product Marketing Manager

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As you might have read in my last blog post KBB has released a very new KBB Classifieds product after AutoTrader bought KBB. Today I sat in on a webcast with Jared Rowe the President of KBB where they described there new classifieds services and where they planned on going with it. You can click HERE to view the slide show Jared used during the webcast.

KBB is still in the very beginning stages of getting a solid product put together but I think its going to play a large influence on a unique audience. One point he emphasized on was how they weren't looking to turn KBB into AutoTrader. With that being said they also included what could become a more commonly seen search algorithm. When trying to reach the consumer in the early stages of shopping for a car merchandising was what KBB is going to focus on for search results. So you want to be ahead of the curve on KBB, pay extra attention to your merchandising and show up higher on search results. In total Jared mentioned these elements that were used in the KBB search algorithm.

-Vehicle Features List
-Proximity to Zip
-Newly Posted Listings
-Vehicle Mileage Relative to Search Criteria
-Number of Photo's
-Quality of Seller Comments
-Video Included or Not
-Price Included or Not

 

This "Merchandise Heavy" is a new strategy but definitely much different then what AutoTrader does. It speaks well for the claims they aren't trying to turn KBB into AutoTrader and also works well to reach a new audience.

More importantly this makes me wonder how many other major or upcoming players online will start to follow an alike strategy on search? It is also a fantastic reminder of just how important merchandising already is. Having video, the most photo's, and great robust sellers comments should already be a focus but isn't normally looked at as help to get your vehicles higher on search results. Efficient merchandising, which is all pushed to KBB from AutoTrader automatically is going to be key for competing on KBB. How many other places online will follow in their footsteps?

 

Thank you,

--

Russ Chandler

260-435-1824

russ58@hotmail.com

Ed Brooks
WOW, Russ, great report. This could be a 'Game Changer' for online classifieds. Returning the most relevant results to consumers will definitely help establish KBB as a real player in the classified game. Do you think the next frontier for classifieds might be to factor Reputation into the algo? This would penalize folks that play games with pricing to push up their listings, much like Google penalizes folks that game their SEO.
Russ Chandler
Thanks Ed! I think reputation will most definitely become more of an influence in the search algorithm. Like you said Google, which generally is a pace setter, has already made that a priority. Think of Cars.com and how much effort they have put into gaining dealer reviews from customers. If they were to adjust there algorithm at all I'm sure it would involve reviews. It will be interesting going forward, just how ahead of the competition you can get focusing on more technical details like this. After all we are advertising in the most technical world there is, the world wide web.
Jim Bell
Very interesting on KBB focusing on the merchandising. Thanks for the info Russ.
Jim Bell
It just sucks that you HAVE to be on Autotrader in order to be on KBB. Just a sign of a company jamming things down throats.
Russ Chandler
Thanks Jim! I don't really worry about HAVING to be on AT because I don't really see a scenario where I'm not going to be at this point. My guess is once KBB is booming you won't need to be anyway. With that said I completely agree that AutoTrader whole strategy is starting to get a little ridiculous. I can't say I know if they are going to make any chances in that department but I can say Jared Rowe was adamant about keeping the KBB approach with the classifieds.

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