How To Avoid A Data Breach At Your Dealership

How To Avoid A Data Breach At Your Dealership

  • Keep What’s Needed
  • Be Aware
  • Be Prepared
  • Destroy Before Trashing
  • Button It Up & Lock It Down

Last July, almost 47,000 files of factory records from Ford Motor Co., General Motors, Tesla Inc., Toyota Motor Corp, and others were discovered in a data leak. The breach exposed company trade secrets that could be used by competitors to have an unfair advantage in manufacturing their vehicles. In addition, the data breach gave employee data, such as their names and ID photos accessible online. 

If you have a data breach happen at your dealership, you’ll not only lose revenue and customers, but your very reputation and brand could be ruined. Reputation is everything, as it is the very essence of who you and your brand are. If your customer’s confidential information is leaked due to a data breach, your dealership’s reputation will crumble. 

So, how do you avoid a data breach at your dealership? Below are ways you can develop a cybersecurity plan and prevent a data breach: 

Keep what you need

When you minimize the amount of collected information or data, this allows you to keep only the necessary information on file. Also, don’t have the data stored in many places. Keep it minimized to know what you keep and where it was kept. 

Cybersecurity awareness 

It’s crucial that all employees at your dealership are aware of the potential of a data breach and what they can do to eliminate it from happening. Assign a management team member to lead a cybersecurity training program. This education can inform your employees what information is confidential or contains sensitive data and what they can do to protect that data. Make it a requirement for employees to log off their computers and lock where they file confidential information at the end of each business day. 

Be prepared for the worst case scenario 

It’s important to be ready if and when a data breach does happen. Have a detailed and document Incident Management Plan already designed to guide you and your dealership through the incident. Have designated roles and assign responsibilities ahead of time, so it’s not a chaotic scramble figuring out who does what, if the breach were to happen. Most states have data breach requirements to follow. Already have someone designated for this and make sure your team knows who that person is. Otherwise, there could be fines and penalties. 

Destroy before trash

Simply deleting files or reformatting a hard drive doesn’t remove the data from existence. Use specific software that is designed to wipe the hard drive completely. All portable media, such as DVDs, CDs, USBs, etc. need to be destroyed. It’s best even to minimize the use of portable media, as these are more susceptible to be stolen or misplaced. Photocopy machines keep a copy of whatever document they scanned, so clear the data on there as well. Eliminate any paper trails by cross-cut shredding paper files before trashing any confidential information. 

Secure Computers and Laptops 

Passwords need to be changed regularly (i.e., once a week) and to something that doesn’t contain any personal information, such as name or birth year. Set up all computers or laptops to require someone to re-login if it’s been inactive for some time. Security software should be installed on all computers and laptops. This includes firewalls, anti-virus anti-spyware, and more, which keeps the security up-to-date electronically. Make sure every employee is aware of not keeping personal information on the computer or laptop unless it is necessary for business needs only. In addition, train your employees never to leave their computer or laptop unattended. 

There’s no saying if or when a data breach might happen at your dealership. But it’s always better to be prepared by practicing these safety tips to avoid it happening to you. After all, better safe than sorry. 

Image credit: blogtrepreneur.com/tech

How Vehicle Color Affects Depreciation

According to a recent study from https://www.iseecars.com/ on 1.6 million vehicles that are three-years-old, the car’s paint color has a significant effect on how long it takes to sell and the vehicle’s depreciation. It may come as a big surprise that orange and yellow are the top 2 vehicle colors that depreciate the least after the three years are up. How is it that these vibrant colors, often seen on sport or exotic cars, depreciate the least? After all, they only make up 1.5 percent of the market. Are we missing something, despite their flashy colors?

Simply put, the reason why these two colors are the ‘least depreciated’ is that they are not a color we’d normally see for the daily drivers. Orange and Yellow cars are for those monthly day trips down the Pacific Coast Highway or a day in Beverly Hills. You’d never see a Yellow Bugatti at a grocery store parking lot. If you do, then the owner is clearly loaded and may have a few more like that back at the mansion.

That said, the top 5 colors making the lowest deprecation rates are listed below in no particular order:

  • Orange
  • Yellow
  • Green
  • Brown
  • Red

As far as the colors that are the most common paint choices and with average depreciation rates, you can probably imagine what made this list. They are:

  • Gray
  • Blue
  • Black
  • White

Beige and silver used to be the most in-demand colors back in the 90s and 00s, so they have an even higher depreciation rate than the ones listed above. However, the color that has the worst depreciation rate (just shy of 34%) is also the third-fastest-selling color: gold. Nevertheless, beige vehicles take the longest to sell and are on the market close to two months before they sell.

Vehicle colors are just part of what contributes to the depreciation. It’s only standard that the value of cars lessens over time. Whether you have a yellow Lamborghini or a beige Hyundai, take care of your vehicle, and you’ll be able to have a better value for your car. Make sure you take it to get its regularly scheduled maintenance and don’t neglect any repairs. If you are a dealership, be meticulous in your reconditioning operations, paying attention to paint correction and matching, regardless of the color. Brighter colors may have the lowest depreciation rate, but a well-maintained car will always have more value than a car that is not.

5 Marketing Tips for Dealerships

  • Website Improvements
  • Online Chat
  • Video Content
  • Ratings and Reviews
  • Social Media Versatility

 

We live in a digital age where consumers are coming to their conclusion about a business before they even step inside the front doors, all because of how they present themselves online. According to a NADA DATA report, US dealerships spent just over $8 billion in advertising back in 2014. That figure rose to a peak of nearly $10B in 2016 and has had a slight decline each year since.  

We’re nearly halfway through 2019, and although a lot has changed, traditional advertising like commercials and radio spots are still valuable to dealerships. However, salespeople at dealerships notice that the majority of car shoppers are on their phones while they’re on the lot to compare with prices and other options. Overall, US dealerships allocated just over half their 2018 advertising spend on digital channels, which is a significant sum and reflects the trends in shopper behavior. How do we adapt to the changes and market ourselves to remain relevant?

Here are 5 marketing tips, just for dealerships:

  1. Give Your Website A Face Lift: When was the last time you updated your website? According to marketing expert Marcus Sheridan, 70% of business is conducted online with a decision already made by the consumer before they even make contact. Your website is the first impression, so is it good enough to have the consumers make the next move and contact you? Is it mobile friendly? Does it have a sleek and professional look to it that is easy to read on any device and is a good representation of your brand? These are all things to keep in mind when revamping the website for your dealership.
  2. Use Live Chat: When a potential customer is exploring your site, they are searching for answers to several different questions. Having someone to communicate with via live chat is similar to holding their hand through a complicated process. Live chat is there to answer any questions they may have about scheduling, inventory, location, and more, and your chance to capture their information and begin the sales cycle.
  3. Create Videos: Videos are a quick and immersive way for a customer to get an inside look at your dealership. Not to mention, they are a representation of your brand. Over 50% of marketing professionals say that video brings in the best ROI. Whether it’s a commercial, filming a test drive with a customer, or just talking about your summer clearance event, videos are a sure way to bring in new customers.
  4. Customer Reviews: Any potential customer is going to want to see what other people have said about your dealership, as they offer a personal experience. Look at social media and review sites to see what people are saying about your dealership and highlight some of these on your website. If you don’t have any reviews, reach out to past customers and ask them to give a testimonial of their experience at your dealership. You’ll also find this is a great way to see how you’re doing and where you can improve in areas that you may have neglected. After all, the customer is the most important aspect of the entire decision-making process, and their decisions will be influenced by independent endorsements.
  5. Social Media: Nowadays, with Facebook Pages and Instagram business tools, social media has become an increasingly popular way to engage with new, potential, and previous customers. People who engage on the social media pages for businesses have the same expectation for responsiveness as they would on a telephone call. They could inquire about any number of things, like asking about a service, inventory, or even sharing their personal experience at your dealership. Additionally, social media is a great platform to advertise promotions and events happening at the dealership. This is the best part of social media, as you’re able to connect with users who are looking for a variety of information. Your job as the dealership is to know your customers, what they are looking for, and provide the answers. The more of a reliable source you are, the more you’ll appear as a knowledgeable, trustworthy dealership and the place they’ll want to take their business.


Marketing is all about connecting with your audience in as many ways possible, in order to be there when they choose to engage. Luckily, there are so many resources available to you to make your content engaging and fun, while also being the best representation of your brand. Focus on who you’re targeting and what makes your dealership the best choice to serve their needs. When you do that, you succeed in marketing your dealership.

Make Your Inventory Pop With These Photography Tips For Dealerships

In the automobile industry, your dealership’s website is just as much a first impression as when a potential customer walks inside the dealership doors. But this isn’t about what you should and shouldn’t have on your website. This article is about the photos you have of your dealership’s inventory. Only having pictures uploaded with the vehicle information just doesn’t cut it anymore.

Your inventory photos need to grab the attention of a potential customer who’s looking to buy a new car. If you have just cellphone quality shots of your inventory, it lessens the quality of your overall dealership. At the same time, if you use stock images of the vehicle but not actual photos of the car on your lot, it’s just as bad as using cellphone quality shots, if not worse.

Here are some ways to make your inventory pop, from actual professional photographers:

Lighting: Every professional photographer will tell you that light is everything. Direct sunlight will create strange shadows, whereas the shade could hide details of the car. The time of day is a good indicator of how harsh the sun will be, which is why shooting early morning or early evening is usually a good time to shoot. Also, overcast days act as a natural “diffuser,” which means it lessens the intensity of the sunlight. It’s optional if you’d want to use any additional lighting. But the same rules for working with sunlight apply to using artificial lights. Even a flash can sometimes be too intense and detract from the overall picture you’re trying to capture.

Background: Your background is just as important as the lighting because you want to make sure the vehicle is the only focus of the picture. Not only is it distracting to see other cars in your inventory in the background, but it will ruin the picture if you have anything else be the focus other than the car you’re capturing.

Take Lots of Photos: The more really is the merrier. The more photos you have of the vehicle, the more a customer can get a real feel of the car ahead of the time. Not to mention, having multiple photos for the customer to look at online makes them even more ready to make a purchase once they come inside the dealership.

Get Inside: When you capture the car’s interior, this shows any future buyers that you really care about the driver. They want to see the condition of the seats, what the car looks like from the driver’s POV, etc. Perhaps they want to see if there are any additional features such as heated seats or a USB cable for their phone. Let alone the fact that they may not want a cream interior or leather seats. All of this plays a vital role when someone is interested in a car. If they don’t get an accurate visual of the vehicle before coming into the dealership, they’ll feel like it was a waste of a trip if the car isn’t exactly as it’s pictured.

Experiment: Sure, you want to make sure that you or your photographer is capturing the images possible for your car. But what about capturing it away from the dealership? Depending on the type of photographer you have, it might be cool actually to capture the car in motion on the streets. Or if you’re near a scenic spot, take the car there to get some really epic and cinematic shots. People are all about the image of what looks best, so why not create some content that adds a unique flair to the typical dealership photos of your inventory?

Another way you can experiment is with the angles. Shoot from below to make the car look more powerful. Or cut off some of the car for a shot if you’re getting a real close-up shot and nothing else is going to detract from the focus being on the vehicle. Shoot vertically as well, since many people will be checking out your dealership’s website while on their smartphone.

Have Fun: It sounds a bit cliché, but having fun with taking photos of your inventory will show to any potential customer. People want to do business where it’s a welcoming environment, full of people who genuinely enjoy what they do. Not to mention, you represent a car dealership. You want the customer to have an enjoyable experience from start to finish because then you earn their customer loyalty (which is something money can’t buy). You might as well give them something they’ll never forget, starting with the photos.

Recon Vendor Management – Multiple Moving Parts and People

For those who manage multiple vehicles through a reconditioning process, like dealerships, fleet managers, auto auctions, and rental companies, employing multiple vendors and employees on top of the administrative duties of running the business can be difficult to manage. There are a lot of steps to getting a vehicle through the make-ready process. To help ease the pains of so many moving targets, AMT developed ReconMonitor™, smart workflow management software for auto reconditioning.

This software is specifically designed to assist in your execution of auto remarketing at maximum speed and efficiency. ReconMonitor improves the ready-for-sale process by giving the user visibility into each of the many steps in the recon process. It also provides a detailed look at how each of the steps and technicians is doing from an efficiency perspective. Let’s look at an example:

Let’s say your dealership acquires a car at auction. The initial inspection indicates that the vehicle needs some mechanical work, PDR, a bumper replacement, paint touch-ups, and of course, photography. Then the next day you acquire 5 to 10 cars through trade-in (wouldn’t that be great), each with its own list of needed repairs. For the recon director or manager within your operation, it can be dizzying tracking numerous vehicles at different stages of the recon process. If your facility employs its own mechanical repair resources in addition to outside vendors for specialties like PDR and other sublet work, keeping track of everything can be stressful and things can slip through the cracks. You not only have administrative tasks to complete but have to manage multiple workflows and stations to make sure the right employees and vendors are matched to the right jobs for the most efficient turn-around.

Capacity management and knowing where each vehicle is in the process becomes complex and the entire process can become bogged down from a single inefficient step. Vendor management in ReconMonitor means the ability to plan, schedule, and evaluate vendors for improved efficiency. For the example above, it would make no sense for the dealer to have the photographer come on a day when a car wasn’t cosmetically ready for its close-up. Knowing where each vehicle sits in the process, and planned time until it is ready for the next stage is a critical ability that will set your business processes apart from any other dealer without this type of visibility and control.

With ReconMonitor, you can watch your vendors and employees complete the designed order of tasks in real time, contact them if needed, make changes where you see fit, and analyze the quality of work. ReconMonitor will also automatically create and distribute vendor work orders, and generate vendor invoices when the completed work is approved, giving you full control.

Dealerships can lose around $35-$50 every day a car is stuck in the reconditioning process. ReconMonitor increases the visibility and control you have over the end-to-end process of reconditioning any vehicle. It’s a great way to get rid of disorganized paper orders and antiquated whiteboards and keep everything in one centralized management solution. With ReconMonitor, your reconditioning process is transformed with vehicles efficiently made frontline-ready in record time.

Advantages Of Management Software For Your Used Car Dealership

  • Faster Turn Times
  • Improved Vehicle Volume
  • Better Coordination

For used car dealerships, management software is an excellent way to increase your efficiency both in the back-office and front-end operations.  Having a system in place not only reduces your overall cycle time but also increases your throughput– maximizing profit and minimizing overall costs.

Employing a management software solution for your fixed operations and reconditioning emphasizes your commitment to making your dealership run as effectively as possible, that you care about making tasks more streamlined for your employees, prioritize customer service and sales readiness, and you’re willing to adapt to the newest technologies out there for dealerships.

With management software in place, back-office administrative tasks that used to take hours can be cut down to just a few minutes. It allows all of your departments to be connected and work together, while also improving productivity on all fronts. Instead of relying on one employee or vendor at a time during each stage of vehicle processing, the operation becomes a more team-oriented environment. There’s a clear and organized structure that doesn’t rely on a back-office spreadsheet or whiteboard to get done. If a team member updates a vehicle’s status in the software, all relevant team members have access to the information, instantly, on their desktop or mobile devices. This lets the team know what’s in the pipeline, and lets both your technicians and your sales team plan for when work is coming.

You can see what vehicles are being reconditioned, where they are, the stage they’re in, and who’s working on them. You can also track and anticipate bottlenecks or delays during the reconditioning process, and improve resource planning based on vehicle volume and where they are in the recon process. The goal, of course, is high-quality work at optimal speed. Workflow management software can get your cars from acquisition to front line sales-ready in as little as a few days. Dealerships lose an average of $30-$50 per day when cars are stuck in reconditioning, so each day you can shave off your recon equals more profit per vehicle. And that savings adds up!

Workflow management software will make your used car dealership faster and more efficient both in the back and front-end of operations. You can create and refine your processes to make the back-office, reconditioning, and retail side of things work better together.

Automobile Technologies Can Help

AMT offers software solutions designed to make your used car dealership and reconditioning process as efficient as possible. We also provide you with better visibility and get your vehicles frontline ready in the shortest possible time.

ReconMonitor™ is powerful workflow automation for auto recon, dealerships, and auto remarketing companies that integrates with Dealer Management and Accounting Systems to ensure seamless operations across the enterprise.

Auto Service Drive

Customer Service For Dealerships: Why Your Efficient Dealership Process Is Inefficient

  • Setting Expectations
  • Reducing Customer Upset
  • Service Advisor is Key

If there’s one thing that dealerships have in common, it’s that they are always striving for new and better ways to improve their process. Especially when it comes to working with the customer. However, it seems that the more methods that are developed for a more efficient dealership process, the complete opposite occurs, and you only get frustrated customers. So how do you make sure your efficient dealership process isn’t, well, inefficient? Keep reading to find out.

When a customer makes a service appointment online, they expect it to help in the overall process from start to finish. The last thing they expect is to show up to the dealership to have a long wait and a completely different estimate than what they were given online. This damages trust, which is the biggest thing your dealership needs to establish with customers. Take a look at your online customer appointment process from the customer’s perspective, and make sure it’s setting the right expectations. If a tool that’s designed for customer efficiency is lacking in the “efficient” part, then customers will want to take their business elsewhere.

There is a lot that goes on in a dealership to keep all systems running smoothly. While the service department is fueled to keep the repairs coming and being completed quickly, the customer wants their car serviced at an agreeable cost, also in a quick matter. But the real engine behind both these operations is the Service Advisor. They are the face of the dealership and essentially the person that the customer puts their trust in. In addition, a Service Advisor helps the technicians with any sudden changes & helps them maintain an efficient process front end to back end.

One of the ways that a dealership can improve a customer’s trust is to inform them ahead of time of the potential for additional service requirements. Often, the estimate that an online form gives a customer is calculated assuming a customer has kept up-to-date on all repairs and maintenance for that mileage. This online form doesn’t know if services have been declined in the past or even if the car is past due for an oil change. It’s only when a customer arrives at a dealership and interacts with a service advisor that they experience an up-sell, which can cause a customer to get upset and make them feel they’re getting ripped off. A simple way this can be improved is by having a Service Advisor follow up with customers who made online appointments. They can ask about their last service repairs and other preliminary questions that’ll save everyone time when they arrive at the dealership.

Another way that a Service Advisor can help customer service efficiency is through having a Pre-Authorization process set up to provide both customer expectation and charge authorization. This has been a great way to improve customer efficiency that benefits both the technician and the customer. Also, you should establish effective communication methods to keep the customer informed throughout the process. Find out what is the best way to get ahold of them: their business number, texting their cell, email, etc.

No matter what steps you take to improve the efficiency at your dealership, you must always perform the walk-around. Upsells usually occur during the walk-around, especially when they’re more cosmetic repairs as opposed to collision related repairs. This builds trust with the customer as it shows consistency and thoroughness on the part of the dealership. It doesn’t even need to be more than 90 seconds, but the trust is lasting. If you remember to keep the customer as your priority and integrate some of these customer-focused efficiencies, then your dealership’s service process will significantly improve.

7 Advantages Of Adding PDR To Your In-house Reconditioning Operation

In the reconditioning business, you’re always looking for a way to add another profit center. Luckily for you, adding Paintless Dent Repair (PDR) as an in-house capability is a great way to increase profit with minimal effort. As someone who’s already performing automotive repairs in your service bays or collision center, adding PDR to your processes will actually be pretty easy. With PDR, you can reduce the time you spend on bodywork during the reconditioning process, but you can also save quite a bit of money as well.

Trained PDR technicians can “massage” out any dents or dings found on a vehicle’s body. PDR typically relies on no damage to the paint in order to be as efficient as possible. Even so, technicians can still perform PDR to reshape the dents, and provide paint touch-ups if need be.

Below are 7 advantages of adding PDR to your reconditioning process.

 

It (Mostly) Doesn’t Cost Anything In The Long Run

Outside a few initial specialized tool purchases and training, PDR basically pays for itself. Once you have the training and tools, you won’t be paying any incremental costs to perform PDR since none of the tools or parts will require frequent replacement.

 

It Has a High Potential To Net You Profit

With the right technician, a $100 or $200 job can be done in 10 – 30 minutes with PDR.

 

You Have The Opportunity To Provide Better Deals To Customers

Most of the average drivers out there today have no idea what PDR is. It’s been around for close to 60 years, and there are still shops that don’t have it as a part of their repair processes. So, if a customer comes in with dents that need fixing, imagine their response when you tell them you can repair them all in a fraction of the time and for a fraction of the price of conventional dent repair. You may already use an outsourced PDR technician, but if you find yourself waiting for them to show up to complete the repairs, that vehicle downtime is costing you even more than just their charges.

 

Creates An Avenue For New, Potential, Customers

If you already have a stream of customers for other repairs and maintenance, you can offer dent removal as an up-sell in the service drive. In most cases, the dent work can be done during other repairs or services, adding no additional wait time for the customer. In addition to your walk-ins, you have the potential to bring in work from auto auctions, used car dealerships, car rental agencies, car insurance agencies, detail shops, and body shops.

 

Minimal Effort To Adding It Into Your Shop

PDR isn’t a method that requires a drastic change in your business. As we said above, it only requires a few initial tool purchases. Outside of that, there’s a pretty minimal space required to do the work and can easily be done in the shop or on the road with what you currently have. It only takes a few minutes to do during your detailing or painting phases, and it’ll just take a minute for you to speak with the customer, bring up the dents, and offer to repair them without any impact to the overall repair time.

 

Relatively Low Start-Up Cost

PDR will basically pay for itself once you’ve trained your technician(s) and purchased the proper equipment. It can be self-taught, but professional training and tools can cost anywhere from $5,000 – $15,000 depending on the level of training, certifications, and the quality of the tools. However, after the initial investment, PDR has high profit potential and costs much less than other typical investments for business line extensions.

 

It’s Easy To Sell To Customers

No matter what, offering a dent repair option that costs a fraction of conventional dent repair to a customer is a pretty easy sell. Since it only takes a few minutes to repair, the lower costs are drastically made up by the sheer volume of PDR that can be done throughout each week. What takes many shops days to do, you could do in minutes. So, if you provide a quality option that saves customers money and is convenient for them, you’ll ultimately get more business down the road.

 

AutoMobile Technologies offers Software Solutions That Can Help You Manage Your PDR Process

AMT offers software designed to make your reconditioning business more efficient, provide you with better visibility, and give you peace of mind knowing that your back-office is always up-to-date.

ReconMonitor is a state of the art workflow automation software for auto recon, dealerships, and auto remarketing companies. ReconMonitor dealership software decreases reconditioning cycle time from acquisition to front line and increases your control and profitability.

ReconPro is the industry’s most versatile and powerful software solution purpose-built for auto recon professionals. With essential tools for performing PDR estimates, hail and insurance matrixes, parts management, paint code lookups, integrations with body shop crash systems and accounting systems, too. ReconPro manages the details of running your business so you can focus on growing your business.

Watch For These Used Vehicle Trends Through 2019

 > Sales mostly flat

 > New vehicle prices spur more Used vehicle shoppers

 > Increased Used inventory means larger depreciation

Much like the year before, 2019’s new and used vehicle market is moving apace. Sales have been decent enough – with no real jumps in profits. However, analysts still warn of the impact of higher vehicle prices on the auto industry in general, which may mean greater margins for used car dealers.

With many in the industry voicing their concerns, there are a few used vehicle trends you should plan for in 2019.

 

Sales Will Mostly Be Flat

Plenty of organizations are predicting flat sales. Both NADA and other economists expect the new car sales to be lower than 2018’s 17.3 million. Beyond that, according to Automotive News’, David Muller, senior economist at Cox Automotive, Charlie Cox, said:

“We estimate the market to be around 39 million and a half on the used side in total.”

In 2018, used cars saw a slight increase in sales in comparison to the new market. However, this year, they don’t expect the sales to increase by any substantial measure – which would end the 5-year gain the used market had been experiencing.

 

Increased Vehicle Costs Will Turn Customers To The Used Car Market

As manufacturing prices continue to rise, so will new dealership prices, and therefore use vehicle prices. However, the key difference here is that used vehicles will ultimately be the cheapest option for consumers.

The chief economist at Cox Automotive, Jonathan Smoke said: “The fundamentals remain solid; used-vehicle demand is at a peak. Wholesales supply is now post-peak and starting a gradual decline. The used market is the answer to the affordability challenges in the new market.”

 

Lease Maturities Will Peak

In 2019 alone, Automotive News’, David Muller, says more than 300,00 vehicles will come off lease in 2019 in comparison to last year. According to Cox, maturities are expected to peak around 4.1 million units– which comes three years after new light-vehicle sales hit a record of 17.6 million.

Executive Vice President and Chief Economist at ADESA Analytical Services, Tom Kontos said: “So With a high percentage of purchases happening upstream, there were comparatively fewer vehicles working their way downstream into physical auctions.” Which assisted in keeping prices from falling fast.

 

There Will Be Larger Depreciation

Since there will be an increase in supply, there’s an expected increase in the rate of depreciation as well. According to President of Operations at Black Book, Anil Goyal, the rate of depreciation for 2018 was 12.4%. However, he said the rate will go up to 15% in 2019.

 

There Will Be An Increase Of SUVs In The Market

Companies, such as Ford, are going all in with trucks and SUVs. According to Tom Kontos, “Even if supply growth in total is fairly moderate, the growth in crossovers and SUVs is going to be fairly significant.”

 

Bottom line: Used vehicle sales will be close to last year’s peak levels, which is good news. Demand will remain steady, partly fueled by higher new car pricing. SUVs and Crossovers continue to dominate consumer interest, and vehicle inventories should generally match their needs.

How Reconditioning Software Reduces Your Time To Market

Recon management whiteboard

Yesterday’s recon management dashboard. Don’t rub it the wrong way!

With each year, more and more dealerships are adapting to the latest and greatest technology. They’re doing this to increase their inventory turn times, but to also anticipate the likelihood of selling outside of those time spans. There are a lot of things to consider as a used car dealership, but one thing for sure is that each day a vehicle is being reconditioned, you’re losing money.

So, let’s approach time to market with an example. Let’s say your turn time is 50 days, but it takes you a total of 9 days to recondition the vehicle from auction to the frontline. With that turn time alone, you’re already reducing the vehicle’s chance of getting sold by 18%. Beyond that, if you wait too long, you may have to send it back into auction or reduce the price significantly to make any profit from it. The longer you have a vehicle in inventory that isn’t driveable by a potential customer, the less likely it’ll get sold.

Because of an inefficient recon operation, problems with morale can develop between your different departments. The business relies on the sales force selling vehicles as soon as possible, but if the technicians in the service department are taking too long, there will inevitably be some friction. At the end of the day, time to market relies the most on the reconditioning process pushing out vehicles as fast as possible for the sales team.

If you create a standardized process for your back-office, service department, vendors, and front-end sales, your time to market will drastically reduce. One of the biggest bottlenecks for used car operations and the reconditioning process is communication. Reconditioning management software can bridge the gap between all of the departments– making it easier for information to be accessed, knowing who’s accountable for delays, and getting approvals as fast as possible. It can even reduce friction between departments, by enabling your Fixed Ops department to set Sales department expectations with reliable delivery times for each vehicle.

To make sure all of your vehicles are frontline-ready as soon as possible, reconditioning software is an absolute must in this market. It enforces a much more organized approach when it comes to back-office information, vehicle reconditioning, sales, and customer satisfaction, and all the relevant information is available at the touch of a button on your computer or mobile device.

AutoMobile Technologies Can Help

AMT offers software solutions designed to make your reconditioning business more efficient, provide you with better visibility, and give you peace of mind knowing that your back-office is always up-to-date and your reconditioned vehicles are delivered at speed.

ReconMonitor is a state of the art workflow automation software for dealerships, auctions, and auto remarketing companies. ReconMonitor dealership software decreases reconditioning cycle time and increases your control and profitability.