- Repair & Care
Chicago—July 19, 2004—Cars.com today announced the launch of its Certified Showroom, an online marketing solution for manufacturers and dealerships to increase consumer awareness of certified pre-owned programs and to merchandise their certified inventory. The Certified Showroom highlights a dealer's entire certified inventory alongside extensive dealership branding and comprehensive information about the manufacturer's certification program to drive consumers to their certified program, into their dealership, and into a CPO vehicle.
"Research shows that the Internet is the ideal medium for marketing certified vehicles," said Mitch Golub, president of Cars.com. "In addition to the flexibility to explain the features and benefits associated with certification, sites like Cars.com reach a highly qualified audience of certified shoppers. 67 percent of used-car shoppers on Cars.com have considered purchasing a certified vehicle. The Certified Showroom makes it easy for these buyers to connect with certified vehicles and to select a dealership from which to purchase their next car."
The Certified Showroom is available to all Cars.com customers who are certified by participating manufacturers. In addition to highly visible CPO branding icons within Cars.com search results, certified vehicle listings quickly link to the Showroom where consumers can access the dealer's complete certified inventory at a glance and learn more about the manufacturer's program without leaving the Showroom environment. In addition to showcasing program benefits and merchandising certified vehicles, the Showroom extends the dealer's online presence through graphical logo representation and complete dealership contact information. A direct lead path from the Showroom to the dealership ensures consumers can take the next step in connecting with the dealer once they are interested in a specific vehicle.
"We know that dealerships are the most effective promoters of their CPO programs," said Golub. "Cars.com's Certified Showroom was designed with that in mind, to help dealerships communicate certified value to online shoppers and drive interested buyers directly to their showrooms. Instead of funneling shoppers back to manufacturers' sites for more information, we worked with leading OEMs to shape a certified marketing program that keeps shoppers moving toward the dealership to drive more sales. It's a win for manufacturers who achieve their awareness objectives and for dealers who see direct sales results."
More certified buyers become aware of certification through the Internet than any other media. In addition to the Certified Showroom, Cars.com offers comprehensive editorial coverage, detailed CPO program comparisons and the latest information on CPO incentives.
Partnered with 175 leading metro newspapers, television stations and their Web sites, Cars.com is the one-stop shop for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site places vehicle listings from more than 7,400 dealers alongside nationwide classified advertising and private-party listings to offer consumers the best selection of new and used cars online, as well as the content, tools and advice to support their shopping experience. Cars.com combines powerful inventory search tools and new-car configuration with pricing information, photo galleries, buying guides, side-by-side comparison tools, original editorial content and reviews to help millions of consumers connect with sellers each month.
Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, (http://classifiedventures.com), which is owned by six leading media companies including, Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), Knight Ridder (NYSE: KRI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) and The Washington Post Company. (NYSE: WPO). ). For more information, visit www.cars.com.