JT Curry, General Manager of Motors Northwest in Tacoma, Washington, isn’t nearly as concerned about the name on his dealership software as he is about the results those tools help his team generate.
When JT – a longtime Inventory+ user – took a flyer on a different tool, he realized how much better his retailing process was with Inventory+.
“I cheated on DealerSocket and tried out a competitor because they had one particular feature that I thought was really cool,” JT said. “But we learned pretty quickly the product is inferior to Inventory+. It just is.”
Sometimes, you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone. Luckily, when it comes to automotive software, you can go right back. And with Inventory+, JT and Motors Northwest did just that.
Retail vs wholesale
The decision to come back to Inventory+ started with key part of Motors Northwest’s used car retailing process that served as an indicator of the fundamental difference between to two competing products.
“We write a description for every one of our cars,” JT said. “We send our cars out to a reconditioning place and have photos taken of them, and then we write a custom description for every single car that comes into inventory.”
The new tool didn’t allow JT and his team to do that, which impacted their ability to retail their inventory the way they wanted.
“Maybe you have to lean one way or the other, but I would tell you your competitor’s solution leans into the wholesale side of buying, marketing, and reselling your cars. And Inventory+ leans toward the retail side of marketing and selling your car,” JT said.
Focus on profit with TrueTarget
The biggest flaw in the wholesale approach is that it aims to help dealerships turn over their inventory quickly but sacrifices profit margins to do so.
“Your competitor turns everything into a race to the bottom. All they want to do is tell you how to become the cheapest car out there and sell as quickly as you can, for the cheapest possible price,” JT said.
To stay out of that “race to the bottom,” Motors Northwest relies heavily on TrueTarget to make informed pricing decisions that take all factors into account and help protect their profit margins from the start.
“It’s really important to know how I do with a Ford Mustang, but also how my local market does with a Ford Mustang,” JT said. “TrueTarget is really, really nice to have because it helps me make the most money possible on each car."
At Motors Northwest, the impact of TrueTarget can be felt beyond the standard appraisal process. JT and his team also use the reports while negotiating with customers during the sales process.
“We do it all the time when we’re in the middle of a sale and our cars are aggressively priced,” JT said. “We’ll print it out, hand it to the salesperson and have them show the customer. They know about Zillow for real estate, so we just tell them that this is like that for the automotive industry and that really helps.”
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