What questions should I ask my 3rd party inventory providers?

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Posted on by Wikimotive LLC
Categories: ThinkBetter Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , ,

We touched on alignment. It’s one of the most important things we can make sure of: that our partner is providing exactly what we think. We want to ask them point blank:

  • What are the main goals you’re helping dealers using your product meet? Is it leads? Is it impressions? Is it branding? What am I getting for my money?
  • What results are dealerships like mine typically seeing on the platform? I mean dealerships that are in a similar metro, with a similar inventory, who have a similar sales performance.
  • What can I reasonably expect from your product?
  • What KPIs does your company find most valuable in leading to an actual customer visit?(I’ve never been able to sell a car to an “impression” no matter how hard I’ve tried. I need customers in the showroom)
  • What KPIs are you telling me will lead to that with your product?
  • Who’s your best performing dealer on your platform? Why? What are they doing differently than what I can do?
  • What does your average customer persona look like? Where are they in the buying funnel? How long after they see a vehicle on your website do you expect them to make a purchase?
  • What would be a typical CTR (click through rate) from your website to my website? What factors do you find influence that?

You’re also going to want to ask your representative directly:

  • What is your role at the company?
  • What actions can you take directly on our behalf? Which actions require support?
  • Can you alter our campaigns, or does someone else need to do that?
  • If we do make changes, what’s your average turnaround time?

Those are some great questions before we hire a provider. Here are the questions you need to be asking each month to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.

  • Who in my market is currently outperforming me on your platform? Why?
  • Is there anyone on-brand that’s beating me?
  • Are there any features of my current package that I’m not utilizing, or that I could utilize better?
  • Is my current inventory feed sending you all available fields? Are there any fields missing that could enhance my appearance in search, on your website?
  • What improvements have you made to your platform since our last meeting? How do I take advantage of them?
  • Have you started working with any 3rd parties who buy or sell my customer data?

Asking those questions on a monthly basis, and taking action on the information you receive can be the difference between you sending a vendor a check and getting actual leads and sales from that vendor. By having a consistent methodology in how we’re taking our vendor reports, and by asking consistent actionable questions, we ensure that our vendors are providing us with the best performance; and we also make sure that they know…

“We’re looking at you. We see what you’re doing.”