Chicago—August 9, 2006—In a testament to the quality of prospects sent to dealers through its new car lead generation product, NewLeadsPlus, Cars.com announced today that more than 60 percent of its lead senders purchase a vehicle. The findings stem from an analysis by Experian Automotive of approximately 300,000 new car leads Cars.com generated between February 2005 and January 2006.
"Although the new car lead business has been around a long time, Cars.com takes a new approach to drive quality prospects to our customers. Our leads originate from a high-quality source and go directly to our dealers without being resold," said Mitch Golub, president of Cars.com. "By generating our own leads, utilizing search engine marketing and scrubbing the leads for accuracy, we provide dealers with true vehicle intenders. Our recent leads analysis study proves that our approach works."
With nearly nine out of 10 new car buyers using search engines to research vehicles they're considering, NewLeadsPlus allows dealers to reach car buyers they might otherwise miss. The product captures active shoppers who submit their information when shopping through top search engines, including Google and Yahoo!. Cars.com verifies these leads and sends them directly to the dealership within 7 minutes of submission, in many cases while the shopper is still online.
"This rapid turnaround provides dealers the best opportunity to engage car buyers as soon as they submit the lead," Golub said. "Dealers who follow-up quickly and stay with the buyer throughout the shopping process are the most likely to win the sale."
More than 2,000 dealer franchises now use NewLeadsPlus, which Cars.com launched following its acquisition of California-based NewCars.com.
Partnered with more than 200 leading metro newspapers, television stations and their websites, Cars.com is the most comprehensive destination for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site lists more than 1.8 million vehicles from 12,000 dealer customers, classified advertisers and private parties 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. Recently selected by Forbes.com as a Best of the Web site for car shopping, 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 car shoppers connect with sellers each month.
Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).
Experian Automotive delivers information solutions to manufacturers, dealers, finance and insurance companies, and consumers. Experian helps automotive clients increase customer loyalty, target and win new business, and make better lending and vehicle purchase decisions. Its National Vehicle Database, housing more than 500 million vehicles, along with Experian's credit, consumer and business information assets, meets the industry's growing demand for an integrated information source. Experian's advanced decision support services help clients turn this information into improved business results. Experian technology supports several top automotive web sites including eBay Motors, Yahoo! Autos, CarsDirect.com and NADAguides.com. For more information on Experian Automotive and its suite of solutions, visit our web site .