SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. — In anticipation of a car sales surge this Memorial Day weekend, DealerSocket has assembled data gathered from 950 dealerships during last year’s Memorial Day weekend to inform dealer decisions this year.

According to DealerSocket, last Memorial Day weekend, 89% of phone leads resulted in an appointment being scheduled — compared to just 36% of Internet leads. More appointments were set to test drive used cars (35%) than new cars (20%).

In addition, appointment confirmation rates, appointment show rates and appointment sold rates on new car vs. used were almost identical: Appointment confirmation rates for new vehicles stood at 54% and used at 53%, appointment show rates for new cars hit 66% and used 64%, and appointment sold percentage on both new and used was 19%.

Last year, it took dealers about one more follow up call on average to close a used car customer compared to new car customer, with the average number of outbound calls for new car customers coming in at 1.8. The average number of outbound calls for used car customers was 2.6. For new cars, the visits sold percentage was 43%, while the percentage for used cars was 50%.

DealerSocket recommends that dealers update used car ads on a biweekly basis. The days to sold for used cards was 16 vs. 25 days for new. New leads to sold percentage for new cars vs. used cars was 46% to 57%, respectively.

During Memorial Day weekend 2014, General Motors touted the highest gross profit out of any other manufacturer (import or domestic) with Buick being No. 1 out of their four brands. The average total profit per vehicles for General Motors was $2,377. Buick was $2,634, Cadillac was $2,528, GMC was $2,457, and Chevrolet was $1,888. Economy cars had some of the highest closing rates from new leads received last Memorial Day weekend, with Scion at 66%, Fiat at 56%, Honda at 53%, Mini at 53%, and Hyundai at 50%.

DealerSocket also found that the Top 5 marketing channels by number of leads received and average profit per vehicle were as follows:

  1. Dealer website: 4,929 leads/$1,417 average profit
  2. AutoTrader: 984 leads/$1,446 average profit
  3. 969 leads/$1,515 average profit
  4. Manufacturer website: 764 leads/$1,336 average profit
  5. TrueCar: 669 leads/$999 average profit

The company also compared its RevenueRadar leads to other types of leads. Closing rates for RevenueRadar customers were 70%, compared to 58% for Internet, 51% for phone, and 30% for floor. But dealers using RevenueRadar typically did not have appointment scheduling processes in place, meaning that only 7% of new RevenueRadar leads had appointments scheduled while 36% of all new internet leads had an appointment scheduled. And the average response time for new RevenueRadar pings was 117 minutes vs. 16.4 minutes for new web leads.

The average total profit on RevenueRadar sales was $1,674, but floor sales came in on top last year at $1,810. Sales from phone leads had an average profit of $1,622 and Internet was at $1,401.

Overall, during Memorial Day weekend 2014, the average total profit for new cars was $1,360 and average profit for used cars was $2,152.