Much discussion has taken place about dealers choosing to purchase inventory online rather than travel to auction. Some dealers say they’ll never abandon the traditional auctions; others vow never to go back to the “old” way of doing things. It’s difficult to say which method is more popular with dealers today. However, a lot of dealers are finding success by keeping their options open and utilizing both kinds of auctions. They may be perfectly happy finding special finance vehicles at their local auction, for example, while choosing to go online to look for a certain vehicles that move well with prime credit customers.

Auction Company – Traditional

Only one provider was able to score above the group average this year. Manheim, after winning Platinum last year, returned to claim the Diamond Award with its highest score ever in this category. While the company has not won this award in consecutive years, this is its third Diamond Award in five years.

Online Auction – Purchasing Inventory

Already a Double Platinum winner and annual award winner in this category, GMAC SmartAuction claimed the Diamond Award for the second consecutive year, earning the company Double Diamond status this year. GMAC not only offers online auctions for GM franchise dealers, but also serves non-GM franchise dealers and independents with SmartAuctionOpen.

“Our goal at SmartAuction is to always bring additional value to the dealer’s bottom line,” said Bill McIver, national sales director for GMAC SmartAuction. “In my experience, these are the most challenging times we have faced in the auto industry. Buying online offers dealers the ability to deliver on specific customer needs from a virtual inventory of thousands of vehicles. They can determine customer interest before committing to purchase.”

With back-to-back Platinum Awards, this year Manheim’s boasts Double Platinum status. Just as in 2008, SmartAuction and were the only two providers to score above average.

Online Auctions - Purchasing Inventory
Company Award Score
GMAC SmartAuction Diamond 119.9
Manheim Platinum 101.5
Group Average 101.5

Auction Companies - Traditional
Company Award Score
Manheim Diamond 117.5
Group Average 113.9

Vol. 6, Issue 4