Auto search site Cars.com has added a new feature, DealerChat, to its online advertising offering. It's available immediately, at no extra cost, and does exactly what the name says it does - allows dealers to chat with ready-to-buy customers, directly from their Cars.com listings.
"Cars.com is committed to equipping our dealers with the tools they need to engage in-market shoppers, drive traffic to their stores and close more sales," said Dennis Galbraith, vice president of advertising products and training at Cars.com. "By adding chat functionality to our listings, we give dealers a powerful new way to communicate with in-market shoppers who are still on their listings and interested in learning more about their vehicles and their dealership. Every chat inquiry represents a potential deal and gives our dealers a new opportunity to build a relationship with the prospect and win their business."
Andre Johnson, general Manager at Rothrock Chevrolet Lotus near Philly, tried DealerChat as part of a test and found great results.
"If they're going to chat, they want to know, 'Do you have that car now?' You have a greater chance of selling them the car - and not losing them - than when you're emailing them information about the car when they already have that in front of them," said Johnson.
With the economy the way it is, dealers need all the help they can get. It's great to see sites like Cars.com understanding their advertisers and helping them increase sales in these changing times. I've noticed that Cars.com is very good at this. Last November, Cars.com hosted a free webinar discussing how online ads drive offline traffic.
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