A Better Trade-in Process Starts with Distributed Auctions

July 23, 2020 in Improving Operations

Recently, we analyzed third-party valuation sources as research for an article to help dealers improve their trade-in process. 

What we discovered was enlightening, not only when it comes to how dealers can improve their internal processes, but also how to improve the trade-in experience for their customers.

First, we evaluated a vehicle that initially came through our live appraisal platform for which our appraisers extended an offer of $19,000. Next, we submitted that identical car to a popular vehicle valuation provider, resulting in an automated cash offer of $17,000. 

Then, we submitted that same vehicle to several major used car retailers resulting in offers averaging $18,000. Finally, we researched the average MMR of that specific vehicle, with an estimated value of $19,150. The net value to bring that car home from auction, after fees, was $20,050.  

The source breakdown looks like this:

Automated cash offer - $17,000
Major used car retailers - $18,000 avg.
The Appraisal Lane - $19,000
MMR - $19,150
Auction-to-home net - $20,050


Here's what we learned from our informal analysis.

Distributed auctions create efficiencies. 

If you could use The Appraisal Lane to deliver in-demand customer vehicles directly to you, while saving upwards of $1,000 in auction fees in the process, why wouldn't you? 

A distributed auction, like The Appraisal Lane, brings the lanes – and in-demand customer trades – directly to dealers through a convenient online platform, while significantly cutting costs in the process.

Distributed auctions eliminate disposition hassles.

Just as a distributed auction is great for inventory sourcing, it also enables dealers to conveniently unload unwanted inventory for a fraction of the cost.  

The average cost to prep, transport and sell a vehicle at auction is nearly $650. Instead you could use The Appraisal Lane to sell vehicles you don't want or need for 80-90% less at the touch of a button, and have them picked up right from your lot.

Distributed auctions improve the customer experience.

During COVID-19, the number of consumers submitting their cars to The Appraisal Lane has skyrocketed and hasn't tapered off.  Why?  Because they can get a live appraisal and a guaranteed cash offer for their car – safely, quickly and easily from their driveway.  What's more, they no longer have to rely on computer-generated value ranges that can vary by as much as $10,000 from website to website.  

The COVID pandemic brought a lot of challenges but it also brought a lot of benefits. Dealers now realize they can – and should – provide a car buying experience consumers have wanted for years by offering services like virtual walk-arounds, live online appraisals, at-home test drives, and final in-driveway deliveries.

If you could use The Appraisal Lane to give your customers an exceptional trade-in experience from the convenience of their driveway, source in-demand inventory from your dealership, and cut disposition costs and hassles with the touch of a button, why wouldn't you?