The secrets to marketing used cars successfully

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, founder of Lotpop, is joined by George Nenni, founder of Generations Digital to discuss marketing used cars.

Nenni started in the car business in 1993. Two of his older brothers founded a startup called, Dealer Specialties and he joined the business as their first employee. They sold the business to Trader Publishing, which later became Dominion Dealer Solutions. In 2017, he decided to get back into dealerships, and began consulting and helping car dealers be better consumers of digital marketing.

With increased demand and low supply, there are a lot of challenges to marketing used cars. Nenni says, when it comes to used cars, you have to be competitive. In terms of marketing used cars, dealers have to figure out the most optimal way to strategize internally or participate with third parties. The key is not to get dragged down by inefficient marketing tactics.

One of Nenni’s tips is to look at the new shopping session percentage. This percentage can be very telling in terms of answering the question— which of my third parties is sending the most traffic?

The other two big categories dealers need to focus on are paid search and paid social, primarily on Facebook. Paid search is every dealer’s least efficient channel. Nenni says it’s tough to know the intent of what a person is searching versus the keyword on buying. For keywords, look at the search query. Google Analytics can look at the search query and the paid keyword you’re buying, so you’re able to see the disconnect.

In mid-September, bulk uploading to Facebook marketplace listings will go away for car dealers. Dealers will still be able to upload one at a time. Nenni says the big play on Facebook is doing catalog ads. He believes traffic ads are still better than Facebook ads.

Nenni thinks Google is positioning itself for a new ad product. He says you’re not going to get a lot of click activity, in terms of driving traffic to your website. But if you’re a dealer, be prepared for future ad offerings you may want to try. If you want to excel in the used car side, it’s having the right categories and driving reviews that mention used cars.

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