Professional Community for Automotive Marketers, Car Dealers, OEM and Suppliers
Our world is changing. Unprecedented access to information and a massive shift in consumer behavior has resulted in a challenging new automotive retail landscape. It has also enabled a consumer appetite for data transparency. To hide from evolving consumer behavior is to deny change. At TrueCar, we embrace this opportunity. We also believe that transparency is the centerpiece of trusting relationships. Some in the industry disagree. We would like to make our position clear.
Our goal at TrueCar is to foster healthier relationships between manufacturers, dealers and consumers through data transparency. To deliver on this promise, we require a high standard from our 5,800 dealer partners – an upfront competitive price and a commitment to a great customer experience. A discoverable upfront price is the cost of getting noticed. Contrary to popular concerns this does not create a “race to the bottom.” The lowest price only secures the sale 19.2% of the time within the TrueCar network. The sale is still won by location, selection and good old-fashioned customer service.
At TrueCar, we believe that upfront price is at the core of a good buying experience for dealer and consumer. Informed consumers buy more confidently and are more satisfied. At TrueCar, we publish the most accurate reflection of the retail market that has ever been available. The goal is to establish an objective, credible and transparent baseline for fairness – both for the customer and the dealer. That being said, TrueCar does not set this market. Our dealer partners set their own prices 100% of the time.
Dealers earn their business every day and we believe that their marketing programs should too. TrueCar is the only fully accountable source of new business where our dealer partners only pay when they sell a car. Gone are the days when dealers have to assume all of the marketing risk and pay for advertising and for leads as a primary way to secure new customers.
TrueCar requires DMS integration for tracking of this accountable model, the core of what makes us unique. We use DMS feeds from our dealer partners for tracking and optimization of introductions made to the dealership. We don’t use our dealer partners’ information to populate the TrueCar pricing curve. That information comes from entirely separate sources of anonymized data that represent nearly 90% of all vehicle transactions in the U.S.
At TrueCar, data integrity, security and privacy are job #1. Our policies, systems and technology have passed the scrutiny of partners like USAA, Consumer Reports, American Express, AAA and many others. TrueCar has never, and will never, sell or repurpose DMS data for any reason.
In spite of all this, we recognize that change is threatening for some. Ours will always be a high-touch industry. The service of our dealer partners and highly-trained sales professionals becomes increasingly important the more consumers know. At TrueCar, our commitment is to relieve those professionals from needing to resort to high-pressure sales tactics or misdirection. These tactics have been an albatross for our industry and they are at the heart of why consumers have become generally mistrustful of the car shopping experience in the first place.
Is TrueCar good for all dealers? There will always be those that resist change. To our dealer partners, we applaud your understanding that truth, transparency, and customer service is at the center of success in our changing market. And, to those that still have questions, we invite an open dialogue. One of the great virtues of transparency is that we have nothing to hide.
Sounds like more bullcrap... and double -talk from a man who says whatever he needs to say to whatever group of people he's speaking to. Painter is a master of saying whatever appeals to the audience he's targeting.
This guy and his company are crashing hard ... we're bringing him down and he knows it. You can smell it in the air. Don't suck up now... There are several bloggers and suck ups that have sold out...don't do it!
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Thursday, December 22, 2011
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Cockroaches always run when you shine a light on them... I don't know the answer BUT "what is worth more right now...TrueCar Stock or toilet paper?"
Toilet paper may prove more useful?
Dealertrack and TrueCar??? Humm
Should we assume that this is the start of that open dialogue? Other than a few rants by Charles Kim and others, the dialogue has been absent. Let me start our dialogue with a simple question - if you are not fostering a race to the bottom as you claim, why do you only show the top three lowest priced dealers? Why not show all of the dealers on the program within a certain geographic distance that the customer can either contract or expand based on where they would like to shop? By only showing the three lowest prices, you guarantee that dealers are going to cannibalize each other to be in those three top positions.
If TrueCar was to put a rule into place that dealers could not set prices below invoice, wouldn't that solve all the issues? We canceled because we were competing against dealers that were pricing Toyotas $1,000 under invoice. It just didn't make sense to for us to sell a Toyota for $1,000 under and then pay a $300 fee to do so. What's wrong with giving the customer a fair price, at invoice or invoice plus, and then having the dealers compete on service, location, selection, and value creation?
Your suggestion would be well received by a company like Truecar if their "true" goal was something less than the race to the bottom. The problem for Truecar is that if there was a reasonable bottom placed on the pricing it would be considered price fixing and there would be Anti trust issues. Aside from that sticking point, there's the fact that if their model didn't create the lowest prices in the market for their customers it wouldn't have enough benefit for the average customer to warrant using them versus the other information that's already available.
They claim the lowest price doesn't always get the deal in the propaganda they put out. I'd say what they don't share is that this is likely the result of having fewer dealers in a market willing got deal with them and the lowest price dealer being hundreds of miles away.
I don't fault Painter for being a good pitch guy. the Ire should be directed toward the dealers that are participating and helping the guy further cripple a department that all too often is already in red ink.