Made possible by the integration of vAuto’s Provision pricing data with Haystak’s Dynamic Inventory Tool, this value-add feature links pay-per-click ads to the attributes and retailing objectives for specific used vehicles. This latest integration is a tangible example of how Cox Automotive companies are working together to deliver value to dealers that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.
“In our early studies, we’ve seen a telling, across-the-board lift for vAuto dealers who use our now-integrated Dynamic Inventory Tool to drive search marketing campaigns that are automatically tailored for specific vehicles,” said Duncan Scarry, Haystak founder. “The performance of their search advertising outpaced other dealers by substantial margins in our year-over-year comparisons, affirming our belief that consumers respond to pay-per-click ads that are highly relevant to their used vehicle buying preferences.”
To test the value of the inventory data integration, Haystak compared the performance of search advertising from a test group total of 18 vAuto dealers who were using the data-integrated tool with 700 other dealers across the Google ad network during the second quarter of 2013 and 2014. The search advertising for the vAuto-integrated dealers included vehicle-specific condition, mileage and pricing data, while advertising for other dealers highlighted less-specific, make/model-level attributes.
“With the vAuto data, we know if a vehicle is priced above or below the market, and whether its mileage is lower than competing units,” Scarry added. “By bringing this data into our tool, we can generate pay-per-click ads that emphasize a car’s specific strengths. Likewise, we can tailor our bidding strategy to match the car—if it’s a lower-price car, our tool can either maximize or minimize exposure, based on a dealer’s preferences.”
Haystak’s comparative study during the test period showed that vehicle-specific search advertising performs better than less-specific search advertising across four key metrics:
1. Cost-Per-Click: While cost-per-click increases are common due to increased competition for advertising placement, vAuto-integrated dealers saw a smaller cost-per-click increase because of the vehicle-tailored, targeted ads and bidding strategies. The increase was just 9 percent for vAuto-integrated dealers versus 26 percent for other dealers.
2. Click-Through Ratio: vAuto-integrated dealers experienced a greater increase in click-through ratio, at 98 percent increase versus 57 percent increase for other dealers. The gains for the vAuto-integrated dealers flow from better ad placement and a higher level of relevance to vehicle-specific search queries. For vAuto-integrated customers, an increased click-through rate on deep-linked vehicle ads may increase the frequency of VDP views on the dealer’s website.
3. Cost-Per-Lead: The cost-per-lead for vAuto-integrated dealers decreased by 13 percent, while the metric increased by 6 percent for other dealers. vAuto-integrated dealers benefited from the integration of market data, which allowed the Dynamic Inventory Tool to adjust bidding strategies to fit specific vehicles.
4. Conversion Rate: This metric measures the calls and e-mails that can result from consumer click-throughs on pay-per-click ads. In the early study, the vAuto-integrated dealers saw a 25 percent increase in conversion rates during the test period, while conversions for other dealers increased by just 19 percent.
“These initial results tell us that search engine marketing for used vehicles can be a cost-effective way for dealers to meet their objectives to increase sales and maximize gross profits,” says Dale Pollak, executive vice president at Cox Automotive and vAuto founder. “In addition, the efforts by Haystak and vAuto to integrate our data and services advances a broader goal for Cox Automotive to combine our capabilities and deliver greater value to our shared dealer clients.”
About Haystak Digital Marketing
Haystak® Digital Marketing is a leading provider of digital marketing services for the automotive industry, including integrated dealership websites, automotive search engine marketing (SEM) and pay per click (PPC) advertising, mobile SEM and PPC, retargeting, display, social advertising, call tracking and advanced reporting. The Haystak products and services are used by over a thousand dealerships across North America and Europe, including numerous publicly traded retailers and top dealership groups. A Google Adwords Premier SMB Partner and a Microsoft Advertising Authorized Reseller, the excellence of Haystak has also been recognized with the 2012 Automotive Website Award for the Top Rated Multi-Channel Marketing Platform and the Google Premier SMB Partner Award for the Highest Customer Satisfaction. Headquartered in Fort Myers, FL, Haystak is a brand of VinSolutions, Inc. which is wholly owned by Cox Automotive™. Cox Automotive also includes Manheim Auctions, AutoTrader.com®, Kelley Blue Book®, vAuto® and HomeNet® Automotive. Visit Haystak online at http://www.haystak.com.
vAuto® provides innovative technology, tools and business intelligence to thousands of dealerships across the United States and Canada, helping them compete more effectively and increase sales volumes and profits. Founded in 2005, vAuto revolutionized dealers’ used vehicle operations with the groundbreaking Provision® suite of tools. Leveraging The Velocity Method of Management®, pioneered by vAuto’s visionary founder, Dale Pollak, the Provision suite guides used vehicle acquisition, appraisals, pricing, merchandising and more based on real-time, local market supply-and-demand data. In 2013, vAuto combined the Velocity method with the power of incentive management to create the Conquest™ new vehicle inventory management and pricing tool. In addition, vAuto Genius Labs provides smart, simple and stand-alone solutions including AuctionGenius. Headquartered near Chicago, Illinois, vAuto is wholly owned by Cox Automotive™, which also includes Manheim Auctions, AutoTrader.com®, Kelley Blue Book®, VinSolutions® and Haystak® Digital Marketing, and HomeNet Automotive®. For more information, visit www.vauto.com.