A new company called DealerStrip has added its twist to online used-car sourcing. Similar to Chicago-based Swap Motors and others, DealerStrip is a consumer-to-dealer auction channel.
Aaron Fruge, DealerStrip executive vice president, said the company is a listing service where consumers can post vehicles for sale for no charge, inventory for which only subscribing dealers can bid.
Launched in the third quarter of 2018, DealerStrip already has committed subscribers, but Fruge declined to be specific. He did say preliminary performance metrics are encouraging.
“Our one-year trajectory is 3 to-5-million consumer sessions a month and we’re expecting about 3,000 dealers to subscribe to DealerStrip, and we look for a 10- percent market penetration,” Fruge said. “Already in just our first couple of months, we have 3 million vehicles listed. We expect to eclipse 10 million active listings by the end of next year.”
Consumers post to DealerStrip as they might a traditional retail ad for their vehicle. Dealers then contact advertising consumers for information and consummate the transaction. DealerStrip takes no part in facilitating a deal, but integration with WeGoLook.com offers remote inspection services.
Another alternative vehicle sourcing model, Swap Motors, is a private-party inventory source, primarily for independent dealers. Though initially launched in 2016 as a peer-to-peer site for consumers to list, sell, and buy vehicles, Swap Motors quickly drew auto dealer interest.
To date, 350 Chicago-area dealers are registered users, using the service at least once a month, reported chief executive officer Alex Johnson.
Though a virtual sell-buy auction site, Swap Motors also presents a physical footprint component. There, Swap Motors provides sellers and buyers with market-based estimates on where they should start their auction transaction. Sellers’ vehicles receive a multi-point inspection, photography, and video for online listings.
“When the auction is concluded, the seller drops off that vehicle with us again for a second inspection, and so dealers can pick them up — or we can arrange for delivery to the dealership,” Johnson said.
The company’s expansion includes four additional physical sites in suburban Chicago.
Meanwhile, the DealerStrip model includes social media marketing to attract consumers to the site and integrate subscribing dealers. DealerStrip can also manage the dealership’s social media, create content and target posts to the dealer’s local market.