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We are currently using dealerspecialties as our vendor who takes our photos. However, I am considering doing this myself as opposed to outsourcing. Does anyone have any tips, suggestions, or examples of dealership sites that I can borrow from in order to set up an inexpensive and efficient way to take the best quality pics?

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The first thing I changed with the two dealer groups I was over, was to take pictures in house instead of using an on the lot service. There were many reasons as to why I did this:

Online - NOW. As soon as the car was cleaned up, my ISM's took pictures and uploaded into the system. They would show up on our website instantly and would be sent to our OEM website and all third party sites that evening.......we wouldn't have to wait until the on the lot service showed up two, three days later or worse. On a Friday I could get pics up for the weekend instead of waiting until Monday or later. We took pictures daily.

Unlimited Pics. Forget the standard 6 to 12 pictures that an on the lot service would take and having to worry about the cost of having them take more. My ISM's took 20+ pics and we didn't have to pay extra because they were taking them and the software we used had unlimited capability.

They KNOW the cars.
My ISM's KNEW the cars. After they took 20+ pics, they KNEW the car for when someone called. When their appointment showed, they could switch people to the perfect car because they knew the cars. How about a highline cars with lots of options - 30++. How about ebay cars - 30++

Quality. I will not pick on any "on the lot service" but the fact is, when salespeople are trained on how to take pictures and they are the ones selling the cars - they know the advantage of QUALITY pics, LOTS of pics and attention to detail. Or if you train someone in the dealership that doesn't sell to take the pics, you can train them, continue to train and make sure the pictures are being done just how you want them. Nothing is better than pride of ownership. No crooked steering wheels, crooked floor mats, stickers from the dealership the car came from, blurry pics, etc, etc, etc.

Customer feedback. WOW. Take awesome pics and you will hear over and over from customers that the reason they called you, the reason they stopped by your place first, is because of the pictures. They could see everything about the car. Customer confidence.

Show me the money! I can't forget this. I could save my department money right from the get go! The dealer did love that and now days, they like it even more. Not counting the more money we would make from having awesome pictures.

Ok, so this is where I plug the company I work for. Hold on a sec. I have only been employed with VinSolutions for about a month or so but have used VinSolutions for two years. I personally picked VinSolutions Inventory when I was Director of eCommerce. It was my 1st choice, period. So the above insight is from my experience of setting up a process, training and putting into action at the dealer level and the benefits from doing it. Exactly what you are considering right now.

VinSolutions software is super easy to use. If you go with the VinCamera, all you need to do is go out and take a bunch of pics of several different cars and just plug the VinCamera into your computer and let the VinCamera do the rest. It will automatically match up the stk#'s and upload the pics! You can work on other things as the pics are uploading. You can also take VIDEO's with the VinCamera, upload into the system and have the system send them to YouTube!!

Check out VinManager for more info on the VinSolutions inventory module.

Make sure and check out MotoBlast too! Depending on the size of your inventory, this should add 10, 15, 20+ cars per month for you. At least it did for me.

I don't do the selling part for VinSolutions but if you have any questions, I would be glad to answer them. Feel free to call or email me anytime. I have set up the processes and know the details of what you are trying to accomplish. 913.221.3784.

Chris Hanson

Having been responsible for Interactive content and specifically imagery at eVox, Edmunds and izmocars, then helping dealers specifically with their media, I'm more than happy to provide you with details that you are looking for and answer you questions. Reach out any time.

Best regards,

Gary May
(310) 951-1705


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