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Strategizing for the return of new and used car inventory

Welcome to this week’s episode of Used Cars Weekly, the original CBT News show dedicated to bringing car dealers best practices and tips for the used car department, in-depth dealer interviews, hands-on dealership strategies, as well as vendor analysis. Today, host Jasen Rice discusses the increase in inventory.

Many car dealers experienced a slow down in January which is traditional for the season. However, going into February and March, car dealers are in limbo wondering if they should hold tight or move aggressively. Car dealers certainly don’t want to be shorthanded with inventory come the Summer and Fall months.

New car listings on Autotrader and are up roughly 15% over the last two quarters. Used car listings are up as well, by 11%. Availability is out there, says Rice. He cautions car dealers, who wish for more inventory, to be careful. Two things car dealers should prepare for:

Related: Prepping your used vehicle inventory to embrace tax season
  1. As inventory increases, you’ll have to be more disciplined with used car management. Pay attention to your aging buckets and bleed through over the next 30 – 45 days.
  2. What if demand keeps increasing alongside inventory and exceeds the availability? Then precision used car management will be crucial to maximize gross.

Figure out how your lot is moving regardless of outside factors. Watch how your inventory is flowing. Take control of what you can. In terms of shopper activity, watch your leads and make sure to do follow-ups.

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Jasen Rice
Jasen Rice
Jasen Rice began his career on the retail side in 1997 selling cars online, then running award-winning internet departments along with being a GSM of an independent used car dealer. His next 8+ years were spent on the vendor side as a Performance Manager for vAuto allowing him to visit thousands of dealers across the nation and train them on used car inventory management. He finished his time with vAuto as a Director of Performance Management in the East and started his own company, Lotpop, in 2013. Jasen was featured on the cover of Digital Dealer in Oct. 2005 and awarded the 2006 AAISP (Association of Automotive Internet Sales Professionals) Professional Excellence Award. He's been a featured blogger for AutoSuccess Magazine and continues to speak at conferences every year. He is happily married to Kelly since 1999, is the father of five children and loves to go camping and cycling.

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