Why Dealers Love Craigslist

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Why Dealers Love Craigslist

Colorful balloons, flags and inflatables were all it took get a car shoppers attention… oh the good old days! Today, auto dealers must rely on digital tools to get the exposure they need to increase automotive sales. Craigslist is a classified community and one of the best forums to sell used cars online — it has a simple interface, localized, and chronological listings that give the car shopper a sense of urgency to buy. Craigslist has been an incredible source of leads and revenue for car dealers, but in 2013, Craigslist took criticism from dealerships when they started charging them for listings.  However, the user experience improved dramatically as savvy automotive dealers realized that by reducing the total amount of cars posted on Craigslist, they would receive more exposure and new customers than they had before!

Craigslist Reach

Craigslist is ranked the 9th most visited site in the US (or 45th in the world) according to Infinite Prospects; with over 30 billion page views per month. Car shoppers go to Craigslist with the intention to buy; shopping for cars is one of the most popular searches on their website.  The average person spends roughly 13 minutes or more, per visit, when car shopping on Craigslist.

Craigslist attracts two kinds of car shoppers; those who are actively looking with an intent to buy and those that are browsing. Being that all micro moments of the car shopping experience are important — there is a key advantage to posting on Craigslist. According to Car and Driver the  #1 tip for a successful car buying experience on Craigslist is to hone your search. Craigslist allows users to configure their search results to include dealers, private sellers, or both. If a warranty, certified pre-owned status, or convenience is high on your list of priorities, you’ll want to restrict yourself to dealer listings, as there’s no reason to waste time scrolling through pages of clapped out Fox-body Mustangs and worn-out work trucks.

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Classifieds Postings

Craigslist is a great forum for classified listings, it is not always easy to keep updated if you are an auto dealership with a sizeable amount of used car inventory to sell. That’s where we come in, TapCars is trusted by some of the biggest names in automotive; from dealers and dealer groups and other vendors. The new Craiglist format brings personal and individual control to the table and makes it easier to focus on getting the right vehicles out there, with the right message. TapCars service delivers a product mix that generates qualified leads, improves inventory turn, and reduces marketing spend. This alllows dealerships to focus on selling cars – while leaving the marketing to us. TapCars posting technology reaches customers across all marketplaces & channels with attractive, informative, and user friendly display ads and easy programmatic distribution.

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Auto Dealerships on Craigslist

With digital connectivity from our computers to our tablets and mobile, more automotive dealers are coming back to Craiglist every day as well as for the first time. If you are an automotive dealership that wants to move more inventory faster, now is the time.  With over 500,000 cars posted, TapCars technology is a proven marketing tactic utilized by dealerships across the U.S. Get your free DEMO here: dealers.tapcars.com.

Automatically Add Used Car Inventory to Facebook

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TapCar’s Facebook Inventory Listing Widget

Build a social following or post inventory on your Facebook timeline? This question posed a difficult challenge for any dealer that wanted to build a comprehensive social strategy & ensure that consumers could see what cars they had available. The new TapCars Facebook Inventory Widget solves this dealer specific social marketing challenge.

TapCars Changes How Inventory is Posted on Facebook

With the TapCars Facebook Widget, we connect your inventory feed to our widget, and consumers can browse through your inventory without ever leaving your page. Best of all, the widget is added as a new tab – allowing your marketing team to continue building your brand without compromising eyeballs for single car posts.

Facebook Inventory Tab - as shown on dealership wall

Did We Mention It’s Free?

Current TapCars customers can have their new Facebook Inventory Tab added for free. Follow our short 3-Step Quick Start Guide to get started. Your cars are posted and removed automatically as soon as they come out of your feed. No maintenance required!

Common Questions About the Facebook Inventory Tab

  • Do we (dealership) still control our Facebook Page?
    • Absolutely. This new feature only requires permission to provide information to your page – which comes from the same data feed used for your posting services.
  • What cars are included in this new tab?
    • The Facebook Inventory page uses the same criteria for posting that we use for craigslist, pinterest, etc.
  • Can I still post individual cars to my news feed?
    • Sure thing. Since you control your Facebook page and news feed, you can continue to post anything you like.

How to Get Started

If you’re a current TapCars customer, see our Quick Start Guide to connect your Facebook account to our inventory widget.

If you’re not a TapCars Customer and want this Inventory Widget on your Facebook page, contact us for a demo or give us a call and we’ll get you set up right away.

Mobile and Video Drive Research for Automotive Shoppers

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Digital Research Matters in Automotive Shopping

Today’s consumer is more connected then ever with more access to, and deeper connection with, automotive content and brands. Not only do consumers have more devices to choose from, but they own more devices than ever before! According to a Neilson Report, American’s on average own four digital devices and engages with media content over 60 hours per week. When we look at the stats, 72% of automotive research involves cross shopping between different digital devices. This includes in-market shoppers who are using connected devices, like mobile, to perform research and competitive shopping activities. As digital research has increased, car shoppers are in-market fewer months — 82% are in-market 3 months or less. The research process for buying a vehicle often begins online and ends at the dealership. The research process often kicks off with consumer advertising, where 3 out of 5 of the top ad formats persuading car shopping activities are digital. Over the process, there is an average of 24 research touch points on the path to purchasing a vehicle, with mobile and video driving this activity. Shoppers can research their new and used car purchases before going to the dealer, and with some mobile apps, even buy a used car.

Mobile Car Shopping

Screen Shot 2016-05-27 at 4.29.34 PMIn-market research and comparison searches on mobile devices has more than tripled since 2011 making mobile an important ad format for auto dealerships. According to JD Power, 48 percent of vehicle buyers that shop on a mobile device use their smartphone while at the dealership, primarily to access vehicle pricing as well as model information, inventory searches, and special offers and incentives.
When looking to buy a car, shoppers turn to mobile for a variety of reasons. The top 5 research activities on mobile are to view cars/trucks, call a dealer, read reviews, view current offers, and locate a dealer. Car shoppers are also using mobile for the same comparison activities. There are two primary actions in-market mobile shoppers do once they are on the lot; comparison/research and pricing activities. Comparison/research activities include looking at reviews, checking out a specific model, or reaching out to a family or friend for advice. If the car shopper is ready to buy they may search for pricing information, hours and contact information of a dealership, or researching discounts or other offers.

Video to Reach Car Shoppers

The amount of time consumers are watching car videos is rising year over year; video adds a human quality of the driving experience to the car brand. Things like infotainment systems, vehicle handling and emerging technology are easier and sometimes more exciting to illustrate with video. Nearly 84% of car shoppers said they would watch a video on their device next time they shop for a car. Of all the ad formats video is number one for driving purchase consideration amongst car shoppers. Videos help to introduce brands/new brands, help to learn more about specific cars/trucks, and to narrow down the purchase decision. According to Google Think Insights, 49% of car shoppers visited an auto dealership after watching a car/truck video!

In Summary

There is no doubt that digital research is driving automotive purchase decisions. With constant connectivity, shopping is 24/7. Whether making an everyday purchase or researching larger ticket items like cars and trucks, mobile is a critical platform for consumers. So how should this information impact your advertising if you are an automotive dealer? Here’s your dealership marketing checklist for making sure mobile and video are part of the mix:

  • Your website should have a responsive design for easy mobile access.
  • Incorporate more video into your site, display ads and social media.

Launching TapCars Acquire! Private Party Car Acquisition.

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Acquire is TapCars new service that alerts auto dealers when desirable private party cars are posted for sale — before the other guys do! Acquire technology uses market intelligence to find optimal inventory and pricing. Increase profits of your used car department by purchasing inventory from the private market at a fraction of the cost of purchasing at auction.

Acquire crawls popular marketplaces by searching for specific automotive makes, models, year and price range that you are interested in purchasing. TapCars Acquire goes to work by surveying popular marketplaces in your region and matches are delivered directly into your Inbox giving you a head start over other potential car buyers. TapCars innovative technology saves time and accelerates the acquisition of private party vehicles by doing the following:

  • TapCars Acquire works 24/7 alerting you as soon as a match hits the private marketplace.
  • Creates potential sales and service opportunities through increased showroom traffic.
  • Tees up quality used cars
  • Easy process to implement

Be the first to connect with private party sellers and secure great cars for your auto dealership! Want to know more about TapCars Acquire or our TapCars Dealer Marketing Suite? Contact us at 408-725-2957, getstarted@tapcars.com, or set up a FREE demo here: www.tapcars.com/dealers. Be sure to sign up for our newsletter and follow TapCars on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.

About TapCars:

TapCars postings distributes auto dealer inventory across all the major classifieds and social sites, connecting with car buyers wherever they are — from Craigslist to Facebook and beyond.

TapCars differentiates itself by also providing dedicated landing pages for every car, mobile-friendly sites, QR codes, call tracking and photo galleries that measurably drives vehicle-specific car buyers to your reps and CRM. We also help you on the auto inventory side though TapCars Acquire: crawling popular marketplaces to acquire private party inventory at a fraction of the cost of auction. Furthermore, we help make results across your campaigns easy for you to view via your own TapCars dashboard — with automated reporting right to your Inbox.

TapCars Reports a Record Number of Leads to Auto Dealers for November 2015!

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TapCars is unparalleled in generating and communicating leads, and tracking sales engagement. In November, TapCars directed hundreds of additional inbound calls to auto dealers as a result of our postings.  And, very notably, TapCars saw a dramatic 44% increase in one of the most valued types of leads to dealers: Credit Applications. TapCars “Credit App” Leads typically fill out several pages of details, almost always indicating that they are on their final leg of the buyers journey. Furthermore, they present dealers with both an opportunity around the car sale as well as an additional revenue opportunity around a financing package.

Additionally, TapCars dealerships reported a whopping 23% increase in shopper interactions to their site.  Specifically, dealers are seeing car shoppers scanning QR codes for a mobile car-profile or landing page visits, or shared a vehicle with a friend via social networks such as Craigslist and beyond.

Other shopper interactions that were monitored on the dealerships custom dashboard include car details viewed, clicks to dealer site, additional photos, address and directions to dealerships. Moreover, CARFAX clicks — a nice service which TapCars provides directly on it’s landing pages for dealers – were also up. These dashboards provide digital reporting that can be easily accessed and allow dealerships to respond accordingly and sell more cars!

All of these services combined increase brand engagement and actual hard leads that TapCars delivers to dealers.

About TapCars:

TapCars postings distributes auto dealer inventory across all the major classifieds and social sites, connecting with car buyers wherever they are — from Craigslist to Facebook and beyond.

TapCars differentiates itself by also providing dedicated landing pages for every car, mobile-friendly sites, QR codes, call tracking and photo galleries that measurably drives vehicle-specific car buyers to your reps and CRM. We also help you on the auto inventory side though TapCars Acquire: crawling popular marketplaces to acquire private party inventory at a fraction of the cost of auction. Furthermore, we help make results across your campaigns easy for you to view via your own TapCars dashboard — with automated reporting right to your Inbox.

TapClassifieds Announces the Launch of TapCars

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TapClassifieds, a leader in digital marketing solutions, announced today the deployment of its first vertical extension into the automotive marketing space: TapCars. TapCars puts auto dealer inventory in front of car shoppers where they are shopping now.

“As our clients experience the power of inventory distribution marketing, where we make every car and truck ubiquitous across the digital landscape, they quickly realize they have missed a very large and highly engaged groups of car buyers,” said Babak Hedayati, TapClassifieds CEO. By distributing dealership inventory across key, non-traditional marketplaces including Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, CraigsList, BackPage and local classifieds sites our auto dealerships are encountering serious car buyers, particularly those searching for excellent used vehicles, he said.

In fact, market research has shown that leads generated across these digital marketplaces close on average in 22 days, far quicker than the 34-days-to-close from traditional leads through the dealership’s web site.“The legacy players like Cars.com and AutoTrader spend millions of dollars in direct marketing every year via SuperBowl ads! in an attempt to coax car shoppers into their walled garden of inventory stranded on their sites far out of view from the average consumer,” Hedayati said.

The TapCars inventory distribution model completely disrupts how used and new cars are marketed, generating fresh, exclusive leads for auto dealers at a fraction of the cost of legacy automotive sites. Incoming calls from buyers are recorded, emails and text messages are captured, and credit applications are securely delivered into the dealership’s CRM around the clock.

The TapCars platform has an extensive analytics suite that monitors leads and lead capture metrics as well as all other digital marketing efforts being applied by the dealership. The analytics focus on search marketing, display advertising, social engagement, and even offline media in a robust reporting system.

“We have been on TapClassifieds since May of 2014. We are pleased with the performance of the product and in July of this year 25% of the leads entered in our CRM were from TapCars,” said Melvin Cooper, dealer principal at Chevrolet of Watsonville. “They continue to give us a solid ROI.”

Recently analysis of a Chevrolet dealership in central California found that leads from Cars.com were averaging $2,200 in July while AutoTrader leads were $1,500. During the same time frame, TapCars leads were coming in at $9! The TapCars program is delivered to auto dealerships through its direct sales team (www.tapcars.com/dealers) as well as a network of resellers now actively delivering the program (www.tapcars.com/partners) across the country.

Reseller partners are now delivering the TapCars program to dealerships in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin with additional reseller markets coming online every month.

Today TapCars drives thousands of leads a month to dealerships representing major groups including AutoNation, CarMax, Fletcher Jones, Hendrick Automotive Group, Lithia Auto Stores, Penske Automotive, Piercey Automotive Group, Serra Automotive and Sonic Automotive among others.

TapCars is an automotive focused business unit of TapClassifieds, is based in San Jose, CA with offices in Canada, Mexico and India. The team brings together deep expertise in SAAS software development, marketing, media, e-commerce, advertising, social media, digital merchandising, and mobile applications. For more information about sales of the platform please contact us at (marketing(at)tapcars(dot)com) or (408)-725-2957.

Online Classifieds: Where the Money Went (And How Some are Getting It Back)

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Thursday, Sep 25, 2014 Borrell Associates and TapAnalytics partnered to provide the webinar: “Online Classifieds: Where the Money Went (And How Some are Getting It Back)”.

Here are some highlights, and the chance to view it for yourself!


Speakers were Gordon Borrell of Borrell Associates Inc. and Jeff Herr and Babak Hedayati of TapClicks (TapAnalytics/ TapClassifieds).

The agenda included:

  • Perspective on Digital Classifieds
  • Revenue Guidance: How Much?
  • Best Practice Examples
  • The Emerging Business Model
  • Issues and results

Digital Revenue by Segment:

Interesting revenue information emerged across various markets:


And poses the question: “Have You Adapted?”

  • The Listings Model has changed
  • The Exposure Model has changed
  • The Sales Approach has changed
  • Performance Demands have changed


From Lead Generation to Full Agency:

Yes, driving leads is the big first step. Then digital marketers can grow full of there digital agency offerings including:  Leads + Search + Direct Display Marketing + Social + Email.

Much of this comprehensive approach is all new for clients and the sales team! But with TapAnalytics you can be prepared to show clear results to optimize, retain, and up sell over time.


In summary, the webinar found that most classified marketplaces are chaos due to:

  • Unique “plays” in each market
  • New and changing rules and terms
  • Lots of search spam
  • Legitimacy issues
  • No links, no images
  • Terms of use
  • Fees

But remember: Chaos = Opportunity!

For More Information:

The webinar recording and slide deck are available to view here:

You can contact speakers for further information at:


TapClassifieds Accelerates Digital Marketing Results for Auto Dealers and Agencies with TapCars

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TapCars Advanced Analytics Platform Delivers Leads with Extreme Visibility Analytics and Reporting of Sales Results and Metrics

TapClassifieds today announced TapCars, a significant expansion of the TapClassifieds program for publishing groups, local media agencies, automotive dealerships, and their partners. TapClassifieds is a proven go to solution focused on delivering hard leads in real time. New TapCars takes automotive digital marketing to the next level — keeping auto dealers and their agencies up to date on how well their digital marketing campaigns are succeeding, and how to optimize their investments and results.

TapClassifieds: Delivering Immediate, Actionable Leads

TapClassifieds is unparalleled in generating and communicating leads, and in tracking sales engagement. With TapClassifieds, auto dealers can watch as new leads are received via email, phone calls, text messages, and credit applications. They can see consumer interest and engagement around specific vehicles, whether a car shopper scanned a QR code for mobile, car profile, or shared a vehicle with a friend using email or popular social networks.

For example, TapClassifieds gave Digital First Ventures another way to ensure their automotive advertisers are reaching potential customers online and via mobile devices. Arturo Duran, Managing Partner at Digital First Ventures, commented, “We are thrilled to see the rapid adoption of the TapClassifieds program by our sales professionals. The sales teams love the program because it delivers real, measurable results to their auto dealers. It really works.”

New TapCars: Metrics to Drive Sales Strategy and Investments

The new TapCars software and services is even more than getting buyers in the door and accelerating sales. It shows how investments by local media pay off with lead attribution, reporting, and analytics. Metrics showing the ROI for various digital marketing channels promote sales strategy wins based on advanced technology.

The TapCars advanced analytics suite is based on the popular TapAnalytics digital marketing platform. TapCars delivers extreme visibility and context for auto dealers and agencies who want to inspect and optimize every thread of every digital marketing campaign. With TapCars, for the first time, auto dealers (and those who sell trucks, motorcycles, RVs, planes and boats) can immediately see how every dollar invested in digital marketing is performing. By truly knowing where marketing dollars are being invested, under performers can be culled and these dollars invested in more effective channels.

The new TapCars digital marketing power tool features:

Agency and auto dealer dashboards: customizable, on demand dashboards provide a unified view into campaign tactics across dozens of integrated third party marketing campaign tools. And, the TapCars suite was designed for rapid deployment of the most complex digital marketing programs, enabling an agency to bring a new client live on the TapCars platform in minutes.

Third party campaign tools supported include:

  • Display Advertising: Google DoubleClick for Advertisers, Google DoubleClick for Publishers, Facebook Ads, AppNexus, The Trade Desk , Rubicon, TubeMogul, Yahoo APT, OAS 24/7, Jivox, SiteScout, Millenial Media’s Jumptap.
  • Search engine marketing (SEM): Google Adwords, Bing Ads.
  • Email campaigns: Mail Chimp and Constant Contact.
  • Leads: Callcap, Marchex, ExactTarget, Data Dynamix, PulsePoint.
  • Social media: Twitter, Facebook Insights, Linkedin, Foursquare, YouTube, Shoutlet.
  • Reputation monitoring: Vendasta’s StepRep and Yelp.
  • SEO/Analytics (website traffic, search engine rankings): Google Analytics, MOZ, Adobe Omniture, TruMeasure.

Reports tailored for every stakeholder: extensive, customizable reports are available for daily, weekly, or monthly delivery. These reports can be tailored to meet the needs and expectations of the dealership owner, general sales manager, internet sales manager or sales representative. These reports can also be rolled up for multi rooftop dealership groups delivering visibility into how each property is connecting with consumers through digital marketing.  “Push” alerts are also triggered when there are noteworthy changes in campaign performance.

Visualization: page views, click through rates and dozens of other key performance indicators are easily visualized in charts and tables designed to bring forward a deeper understanding about how car shoppers are connecting with cars, helping to drive more leads, and sell more cars!

Deep drill down: from within the platform, agents and their clients can read email inquiries, listen to recorded inbound calls, read car buyer questions sent via text messaging and see important car buyer information captured in credit applications.

Analytics: scoring provides broad, relative performance indicators for every campaign element, with color coded performance scores ranging from 0 to 100 to alert the savvy marketer when an important change in performance, up or down, is underway http://ow.ly/YD8i5.

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