Online vehicle retailer Carvana continues to grow at a rapid pace and doubled its first-quarter revenue in 2021. While some dealers have underestimated the company’s influence, our next guest has not. On today’s show, we’re pleased to welcome Brian Benstock, Partner GM and Vice President of Paragon Honda and Paragon Acura, to discuss the modern retailing practices dealers need to pay attention to.
Benstock dives right into the conversation by discussing the ‘profit coma’ that many car dealers find themselves in. He says the ‘nauseous greed’ hasn’t stopped trying to take their gardens, alluding to online vehicle retailer Carvana, which quietly announced record profits. Like Amazon, Benstock thinks Carvana initially reported losses early on which were not necessarily true losses, just reinvestments back into their business models. He adds that many car dealers are just now taking notice. Inventory dictates search options. He says, If Carvana organically controls search options they have all of our inventory, then it will impossible for dealers to compete. He says, it’s a concern for him, and should be for other dealers.
In order to compete directly with Carvana, Paragon now aims to dominate Honda and Acura search in their market. Car dealers have to ask- how can we position ourselves to be the provider of our cars in our neighborhood? Outsourcing business to someone else always has consequences, says Benstock.
The good news is that if you’re digitally savvy and if you stay up-to-date, this is your game to win or lose. This is the time for car dealers to withstand everything that may come their way. The key message Benstock wants to leaves dealers with is to remain informed and keep an eye out on what’s happening.
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