Sell more cars using texts!

Time 1:23 pm, December 29, 2008

I’ll textcha. Everyone’s at it nowadays. Who calls up their mate to arrange a night in the pub – and who texts? If you’re below the age of 30, you probably don’t even realise your mobile phone can make calls!

Seriously, though, SMS messaging has been the revolution of the Millennium. Which makes it strange that businesses have still not exploited its power. What people use every waking hour for their personal lives remains an unexplored entity when it comes to business. So, for you car dealers, we have good news.

Telecoms expert Phillip Carter has come up with a clever service for car dealers that will help you interact with customers on a level never seen before.

‘Cartextservices is very simple, once you get your head around the basic concept,’ explains Carter. Who didn’t explain, but demonstrated it to us. He showed us an advert for a car. At the button was the line, ‘For more info, text ‘Car 112’…’ to a five-digit number. On our mobile, we did so.

We instantly got a text-received bleep. Opening it, there was the whole shooting match on that car – its make, model, year, colour, trim, price, engine, mileage, insurance group, even all the acronyms for its bespoke spec – with the telephone number of the dealership right at the end. This was quite something. And so utterly easy to do – and what’s more only cost us the price of a normal text!

That’s the exact premise of the service Carter offers. A means for customers to text you, requesting information on a car, and you having an automated system to fire straight back everything they could ever need to know. But it doesn’t just end there.

You see, the software making all this happen is really quite clever. Because it automatically stores that customer’s telephone number, against the car they’re enquiring about. And it then e-mails and texts you with this solid-gold lead.

It also builds up a database of these numbers, for you to access with foolproof ease. Which cars are doing well, which generate the most interest most quickly? You can tell, which makes restocking that bit more scientific.

What’s more, as you can target the numbers and where you place them, you can also see which advertising channels get the best response.

It’s perfect, says Carter, for those who want to browse and get the full SP on cars, but don’t want to initially be contacted by salespeople. ‘You still have a record of their contact details, you see.’ The casual observer is now stored in your system.

And don’t worry if it all sounds a bit hi-tech – Carter’s hooked up with Experian, who enable number plate recognition for cars. Literally all you do is type in the registration number on the cartextservices web page, the mileage and the price, and the system does the rest.

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‘It’s incredibly straightforward,’ said Carter. Everything is done online and, if you don’t fancy doing it yourself, just give Carter’s team the registration, extras and price and they’ll do the rest. They can even handle good old stock spreadsheet lists.

Taking control yourself is best, though. ‘You have online access to all aspects of your service, so you can edit and update details – and also see the telephone numbers of those who have texted in.’ How gr8 is that!

More information on the service can be had from 0870 742 6655 or visit

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Car Dealer has been covering the motor trade since 2008 as both a print and digital publication. In 2020 the title went fully digital and now provides daily motoring updates on this website for the car industry. A digital magazine is published once a month.

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