Sign in to follow this  
Becca Chaplin

Put your questions to CarGurus founder Langley Steinert

Recommended Posts

Tomorrow I'm going to be interviewing CEO and founder of CarGurus Langley Steinert. I know there's been some discussion about the website so I'd love to get your questions.

To fit it into his busy schedule we're going to be recording the show early in the morning and it'll be going out at the usual time of 3pm, so if you want to ask something I'll need your questions before then!

For more information, see the story on Car Dealer here: 

http://cardealermagazine.co.uk/publish/put-questions-cargurus-founder-langley-steinert/116713

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dealer A has a motor up for sale at 5k, which according to you guys is a bad deal (booooooooo). That said, in his defence it comes with full service history, 12 months MOT, a proper warranty and the usual facilities you would associate with a good garage. Dealer A is a good guy, Dealer A's business is a good, established and reputable. He looks after his customers.

Now then, along comes Dealer B with the same car, model, spec etc etc. Problem is, Dealer B's car is not quite of the same standard and provenance shall we say but, at £4250 he's offering a great deal (yeah, woop woop, high fives all round). Also, a little investigation tells us that Dealer B is not really a stand up guy and from what we can gather, his business seems to have a few enemies. He doesn't care.

Whose  really offering the better 'deal'?

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the opportunity.

I would love to know what benefit there is to either party (customer or dealer) to publishing on the advert how long a car has been in stock?  (apart from giving the customer even more leverage to get a discount). Would you consider dropping this?

The main issue I feel is with the Good Value/Great Value tool. Although I can see this can be seen as a benefit for buyers, surely there is more to a 'great deal' than just price? Is there no value in the fact a dealer may have a 5 star reputation for customer care, a second to none service and pre sales checkover and the factor that the car is local instead of having to travel 400+ miles? 

The Good Value/Great Value's are based on what valuation tool?

Lastly we specifically buy & sell high spec cars, these cars can have anything between £2000 -£10000+ with of factory fitted extras from new, which obviously means that they are more desirable than a car of a standard specification, how do you highlight these cars? Are they shown as a Great Value Deal or are they shown as a Bad value Deal as they are more expensive? Other factors would also include full service history & blemish free bodywork etc

What are you going to do differently going forward to ensure that you don't become just another Autotrader? ( I dare you to ask this)

Thank you, Jim   

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, jimreidvehicle said:

Thanks for the opportunity.

I would love to know what benefit there is to either party (customer or dealer) to publishing on the advert how long a car has been in stock?  (apart from giving the customer even more leverage to get a discount). Would you consider dropping this?

The main issue I feel is with the Good Value/Great Value tool. Although I can see this can be seen as a benefit for buyers, surely there is more to a 'great deal' than just price? Is there no value in the fact a dealer may have a 5 star reputation for customer care, a second to none service and pre sales checkover and the factor that the car is local instead of having to travel 400+ miles? 

The Good Value/Great Value's are based on what valuation tool?

Lastly we specifically buy & sell high spec cars, these cars can have anything between £2000 -£10000+ with of factory fitted extras from new, which obviously means that they are more desirable than a car of a standard specification, how do you highlight these cars? Are they shown as a Great Value Deal or are they shown as a Bad value Deal as they are more expensive? Other factors would also include full service history & blemish free bodywork etc

What are you going to do differently going forward to ensure that you don't become just another Autotrader? ( I dare you to ask this)

Thank you, Jim   

Asked same/similar - The customer is actually mislead if they advise them about 'best buy' as its only price lead and not as you say spec/dealer reputation etc etc - so in reality its not 'best buy' for the consumer ! ++ 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

4 bold tyres, poor paint and beige cloth interior backed up by a patchy service history......................BUT it's a great deal because it's £327 below the recommend price.

 

Car Guru's free of charge..................Great Deal!!........£1 per week......Average deal................£50 per week, BAD DEAL!!!!.Goodbye Car Guru's

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good interview , put his points across very well ... seems a different model to what we're seeing - he said 'dealer' reputation and also 'specification ' checked , think I would need to see proofs of that as all i still see is cars which are marketed on price .. done a couple of quick checks , if I don't stop I'll ramble on ! but it doesn't add up to me as yet .... ! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hmmmm, just had a look at their site .... BMW 4 series, everyone is a great deal or even good deal ..... but some have been there for 100 days .... surely these great deals don't mean anything then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's very much like reality TV advertising, build a set and then let the public vote/express their views which gives the dealer ratings. All well and good but you're letting people vote on things they may not fully understand. Rory experienced a bad review because the customer felt wasn't happy about a px value, I can see more of this happening in the 'Car Guru' model, people venting because they don't get their own way basically. 

The way he talks about the 'condition' of cars shows a complete lack of understanding too, a basic HPI type check doesn't make the car good condition, it may not have finance or be a CAT C but it could have poor paint on each panel, smell of dog and fags. He talks about dealer pricing to get a 'fair deal' marker but surely that undermines the very concept of a review type site, the word 'Great' is stronger then 'Fair'. Who wants to take someone out for a  'fair' meal when for the same money it can be a 'great' meal. 

It's yet another case of a company getting data and trying to sell it back somebody, be it a dealer or customer in a different way. The problem is the data it corrupt because a car is about how it looks and drives which data can't tell you. It also discounts many maintenance issues such as DSG or Haldex oil changes, type of tyre fitted etc so in a way it restricts the quality of the product the customer end up with. 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Gavin,

 

You've just saved 30 minutes of my time. No disrespect to the guys and girls at TPTV, but at this moment in time I'm not really interested in what Langley has to say. We are on different pages, of different books and I'm quite happy with my bedtime reading.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Gavin@Rousdon said:

It's very much like reality TV advertising, build a set and then let the public vote/express their views which gives the dealer ratings. All well and good but you're letting people vote on things they may not fully understand. Rory experienced a bad review because the customer felt wasn't happy about a px value, I can see more of this happening in the 'Car Guru' model, people venting because they don't get their own way basically. 

The way he talks about the 'condition' of cars shows a complete lack of understanding too, a basic HPI type check doesn't make the car good condition, it may not have finance or be a CAT C but it could have poor paint on each panel, smell of dog and fags. He talks about dealer pricing to get a 'fair deal' marker but surely that undermines the very concept of a review type site, the word 'Great' is stronger then 'Fair'. Who wants to take someone out for a  'fair' meal when for the same money it can be a 'great' meal. 

It's yet another case of a company getting data and trying to sell it back somebody, be it a dealer or customer in a different way. The problem is the data it corrupt because a car is about how it looks and drives which data can't tell you. It also discounts many maintenance issues such as DSG or Haldex oil changes, type of tyre fitted etc so in a way it restricts the quality of the product the customer end up with. 

 

Yes Gavin, agree 100% there seems to be a misunderstanding about reconditioning ie the quality of service and checkover a reputable dealer would carry out and what he deemed as recon, which was if the car had been repaired right? I notice that the question wasn't asked about why they show the amount of days in stock a car has been on the forecourt....WHY does a customer need to know this? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, jimreidvehicle said:

I notice that the question wasn't asked about why they show the amount of days in stock a car has been on the forecourt....WHY does a customer need to know this? 

Sorry about that Jim, we did the show first thing so I didn't see that question until after we'd finished filming. We're planning to get someone from CarGurus on the show again so will put it to them then. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, jimreidvehicle said:

Yes Gavin, agree 100% there seems to be a misunderstanding about reconditioning ie the quality of service and checkover a reputable dealer would carry out and what he deemed as recon, which was if the car had been repaired right? I notice that the question wasn't asked about why they show the amount of days in stock a car has been on the forecourt....WHY does a customer need to know this? 

Days in stock....it's that DATA thing again, they have it and try and repackage it in a way that makes it useful to the customer. All it is doing is bite the hand that feeds it, the dealer who pays to advertise there.

HOW ABOUT THIS FOR AN IDEA !!!

Car Guru's come and inspect our cars we have for sale, if they pass their standards (because they know what makes a great car remember)  they advertise them. The customer then pays CAR GURU's say £50 to be shown the cars that match their requirements which CAR GURU's class as a 'Fair Deal' or £150 to see the cars that are a 'Great Deal'. Now everyone is a winner, and CAR GURU's can honestly say Mr and Mrs Customer, we have got you a great deal, we have inspected and drove it, it matches our high standards. Customers will flock too pay £150 for this. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, Gavin@Rousdon said:

Days in stock....it's that DATA thing again, they have it and try and repackage it in a way that makes it useful to the customer. All it is doing is bite the hand that feeds it, the dealer who pays to advertise there.

HOW ABOUT THIS FOR AN IDEA !!!

Car Guru's come and inspect our cars we have for sale, if they pass their standards (because they know what makes a great car remember)  they advertise them. The customer then pays CAR GURU's say £50 to be shown the cars that match their requirements which CAR GURU's class as a 'Fair Deal' or £150 to see the cars that are a 'Great Deal'. Now everyone is a winner, and CAR GURU's can honestly say Mr and Mrs Customer, we have got you a great deal, we have inspected and drove it, it matches our high standards. Customers will flock too pay £150 for this. 

Gavin , In principle sounds great If they come and inspect etc et c.... However this is flawed

1- there will be too many cars to inspect so they will subcontract this out

OR The dealer buys into the 'system' of 'Approved ' i.e. RAC /AA to name a couple - so not worth paper its written on as its 'self' promoted as great ! #JustMtThoughts :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, umesh said:

Gavin , In principle sounds great If they come and inspect etc et c.... However this is flawed

1- there will be too many cars to inspect so they will subcontract this out

OR The dealer buys into the 'system' of 'Approved ' i.e. RAC /AA to name a couple - so not worth paper its written on as its 'self' promoted as great ! #JustMtThoughts :) 

I doubt they will ever get that comparing used cars is so much more then a one dimensional 'price'. Their model seems to be based around this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A CarGurus advert came through on my FB feed last night. It was a 59 plate Corsa SXi with 70k on it. £3495 all day long. I opened up the link and there she was. It looked it had done 6 rounds with David Haye, and lost. Interior was filthy, glove box was broken and as for the outside, well you are painting a repairing at least 3 panels. I'd be amazed if the head gasket wasn't gone on it due to having no history. That said, at £1995 and being HPI clear it's a great deal. Oh, and it was advertised by a main dealer as a trade sale. Say no more....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Slightly off point and I might be missing something here but is anyone receiving enquiries from CarGurus?

All the enquiries I receive just contain email links (generic not the customers actual email address) and no phone number so your only hope of converting the lead is if customer reads their email?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hope not. I don't want to be anywhere near them.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Chris said:

Slightly off point and I might be missing something here but is anyone receiving enquiries from CarGurus?

All the enquiries I receive just contain email links (generic not the customers actual email address) and no phone number so your only hope of converting the lead is if customer reads their email?

Chris , Thats their way of 'upgrading' dealers to paid adverts - If you pay, I knew thats how they would make money - but just got this in the post '

Basic ' Anonymous email - 12 Images

Enhanced - Full Phone Number & Email address - 100 Photos  Pricing tool -compete branding - cannot be conquested (Keeps competitors off your listing!)

 

Featured -  All the enhanced Plus Conquest competitors - featured placement on SRP's 

 

Doesn't give prices but 200,000 + Cars 3,000 dealers [ Including me :) - Had a few leads on 'older cars' that 'show GOOD BUY' However 'buyers' still want to know BEST PRICE- But Not a single one has turned up - called me - or replied to any of my emails) 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, umesh said:

Chris , Thats their way of 'upgrading' dealers to paid adverts - If you pay, I knew thats how they would make money - but just got this in the post '

Basic ' Anonymous email - 12 Images

Enhanced - Full Phone Number & Email address - 100 Photos  Pricing tool -compete branding - cannot be conquested (Keeps competitors off your listing!)

 

Featured -  All the enhanced Plus Conquest competitors - featured placement on SRP's 

 

Doesn't give prices but 200,000 + Cars 3,000 dealers [ Including me :) - Had a few leads on 'older cars' that 'show GOOD BUY' However 'buyers' still want to know BEST PRICE- But Not a single one has turned up - called me - or replied to any of my emails) 

Thanks Umesh, makes total sense now! B)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this