Accurate information – everyone knows how important this is. Dealers especially know how important this can be for their online vehicle listings. Inaccurate information leads to missed opportunities, angry customers, or even hefty fines and penalties. There is no mistaking how important it is to make sure what you represent online matches reality.
There are several methods of making sure you are covered in this area. You could theoretically go out every day and check every one of your vehicles on every site where you list. This is obviously inefficient and mind-bogglingly boring. The better solution is to have your inventory processed through as few intermediaries as possible. If your inventory is delivered to destination sites via five different distributors, you have five different places to validate along with potential issues at the end site. But, if you can knock that down to a single distributor, you simplify your efforts greatly.
Also, by working through a single point, you gain a more personal interaction with that provider. You, your dealership, and your inventory become known to them and they can provide superior service. You also gain the ability to use any integrated tools they offer to validate your inventory has been successfully distributed. This greatly reduces the chances for potential errors as well as the amount of leg-work necessary to check for accurate listings.
There is still the potential that something may be lost in translation. Occasionally it happens that information which is correct in one place gets misinterpreted when transmitted to another. That is why occasional spot-checking on your listing sites is important.
This spot-checking is particularly vital when you know a major change has occurred in your data such as changing lot services or DMS providers. Recently, one DMS offered an upgrade in their software. After dealers upgraded, everything seemed fine to them, the DMS itself worked just as it always had. Unfortunately, what the dealers could not tell was a change behind the scenes affected how their data was labeled. This led to a ‘loss’ of vital information everywhere their inventory was distributed. A quick fix was available but unless the dealers knew there was an issue by checking their listings, they would not have known to implement the fix.
We live in a digital world. While this offers us great benefits and amazing features, it also presents new and ever-changing problems. A slight change in one area can have totally unexpected results in a seemingly unrelated area. A few minutes each day verifying your online information is accurate can save hours of headaches.