• How the Car Business Will / Won’t Change With COVID-19
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Dale Pollak

    May 27, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and vAuto Founder Dale Pollak discuss key operational takeaways from the automotive industry’s response to COVID-19. Dale shares how a collective focus on customers is helping dealers redefine the way they do business to increase operational efficiency and profitability. He notes that some long-held beliefs, like a need for big facilities and control-based showroom experiences to make deals, are changing fast. The conversation also underscores what won’t change about the role of the dealer in retail automotive, with a specific focus on the need for well-executed inventory investment fundamentals and a well-developed ability to adapt when markets change.

  • A Business-plan-focused Return to Auction Buying
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Jonathan Self and Patrick Janes

    May 27, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson; Jonathan Self, used car director for independent dealer Texas Auto; and Patrick Janes, director of business development for vAuto’s Stockwave, discuss how Self has moved from a standstill to serving a growing number of retail customers. Self details how he’s picked up curbside buying and finding front-end-gross-friendly auction cars by adjusting his stocking business plan to fit current market conditions. Self also shares pointers for used vehicle buyers and managers who have not yet mastered the art / science of appraising and acquiring wholesale inventory online, sight-unseen.

  • Dealer Voices: “We Are Excited About Where We’re Going”
    Host: Randy Kobat    Guest: Trent Waybright

    May 19, 2020 — In this episode of the vAuto Podcast Retail Revival series, host Randy Kobat and Trent Waybright, vice president of pre-owned operations for Kelley Automotive Group in Fort Wayne, Indiana, discuss how the group’s stores are selling more used vehicles today than they did a year ago. Trent shares how he’s remained aggressive in his pricing and acquisition strategy, while innovating in how his team gets vehicles front-line ready and handles customers in a way that makes them most comfortable and safe. Trent also shares insights on how today’s appointment-only selling may become a more permanent part of the road to the sale.

  • How Dealers Handle Reconditioning in the Current Crisis
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Mike Boyd

    May 19, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and Mike Boyd, director of business development and founder of iRecon, discuss how dealers are adjusting staffing levels and processes during the COVID-19 crisis. Boyd shares his perspective that now is not the time for dealers to trim back on necessary reconditioning to reduce costs. Rather, Boyd believes proper reconditioning is necessary to avoid situations where cutting corners costs used vehicle sales.

  • A Call to Return to Retail-back Acquisitions
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Dale Pollak

    May 12, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and vAuto Founder and Executive Vice President Dale Pollak discuss Dale’s prescription for dealers to return to retail-back acquisitions. Dale shares an overview of improving retail and wholesale market conditions, and how these changes make reliance on wholesale valuations less necessary and useful given the increasing relevance and reliability of retail supply / demand insights. Dale describes why the current moment provides what may be a short-term opportunity for dealers to acquire vehicles with front-end margins we have not seen in some time. Dale also shares a cautionary perspective on inventory acquisition levels, given uncertainty about sustained retail demand through the summer and fall.

  • Dealer Voices: “How Do You Want to Buy the Car?”
    Host: Randy Kobat    Guest: John Malishenko

    May 12, 2020 — In this episode of the vAuto Podcast Retail Revival series, host Randy Kobat and John Malishenko of Germain Auto Group in Columbus, Ohio, discuss how the Germain organization has quickly adapted their retailing operations in the COVID-19 crisis. John shares how a simple question has led to some profound insights about the way consumers want to purchase cars in the current environment, and the individuals, skills and performance indicators that drive the best outcomes. John also discusses how the Germain group is changing the way it acquires used vehicles and manages cash flow to prepare the business for the future.

  • How Dealers Are Merchandising Vehicles to Promote Safe, Socially Distant Sales
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Russ Daniels

    May 12, 2020 — In this episode, vAuto Podcast host Lance Helgeson and Russ Daniels, director of product marketing for HomeNet, Stockwave and iRecon, discuss how dealers are using overlays and other tools to merchandise their vehicles in a manner that promotes their safe, socially distant sales processes. The episode also highlights several steps dealers can take to use existing, often-underutilized tools to ensure their merchandising stands out and engages buyers in a meaningful way to drive new and used vehicle sales.

  • ProfitTime’s Role in the Current Pandemic
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Dale Pollak

    May 5, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and vAuto Founder Dale Pollak discuss the value Provision ProfitTime can bring to dealers as they work to liquidate inventory in the current COVID-19 crisis. Dale cautions that the urgency dealers apply to retailing vehicles to improve their cash position should not neglect a vehicle’s investment value. Dale also shares his best practice suggestions for right-sizing inventory and setting investment-value-based pricing strategies in today’s more volatile market conditions.

  • Dealer Voices: “We’re Actually Up in April”
    Host: Randy Kobat    Guest: Bradley Berndt

    May 5, 2020 — In this episode of the vAuto Podcast Retail Revival series, host Randy Kobat and independent dealer Bradley Berndt of Autohaus on Velp in Green Bay, Wisconsin, discuss how Bradley has reduced his inventory size and trimmed prices to move vehicles in the current COVID-19 crisis. The dealership’s sales are up in April, year over year. Bradley shares how his team has shifted to an appointment-only, digitally driven sales process to sell cars and put even more faith in market data to make informed decisions in uncertain market conditions.

  • Should You Step Up or Back in New Cars?
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Brian Finkelmeyer

    May 5, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and Brian Finkelmeyer, senior director of new car solutions for vAuto, discuss the question of whether dealers should say “no” to more inventory from the factory or say “yes” in anticipation of a time when retail demand will resume. The conversation highlights the market factors dealers should consider as they manage new vehicle inventories through the current crisis and best position themselves for business tomorrow.

  • Why Inventory Liquidation Is Right for Right Now
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Dale Pollak

    April 28, 2020 — In this vAuto Podcast episode, host Lance Helgeson and vAuto Founder Dale Pollak discuss why Dale believes dealers must adopt a liquidation strategy in their used vehicle inventories to help them reset their inventory investments in today’s volatile market. Dale shares pointers on how dealers should proceed with reducing vehicle prices, and how this strategy is leading some dealers to a retail revival in their used vehicle departments.

  • Dealer Voices: “It’s an Entryway Into the Future of Retail Automotive”
    Host: Randy Kobat    Guest: David J. Long

    April 28, 2020 — In this special Dealer Voices podcast episode, host Randy Kobat joins David J. Long, a leader at Hansel Auto Group in Santa Rosa, California, to discuss how David is helping his team and customers stay fit, healthy and safe in the current COVID-19 crisis. From hosting the daily “3 o’clock eddy” meeting on Zoom to a flexible needs-based work schedule, David shares how Hansel dealerships continue to retail and service vehicles while their showrooms are closed. David also details how he’s taking an agile, entrepreneur’s view of dealership operations to be prepared to take advantage of the retail automotive return.

  • Social Distance and Digital Deals: Today and in the Future
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Mike Gibel and Matt Kondik

    April 28, 2020 — In this episode, vAuto Podcast host Lance Helgeson joins Mike Gibel, general manager of Ira Jack Chevrolet Cadillac (Saco, Maine), and Matt Kondik, implementation manager for Kelley Blue Book® Instant Cash Offer, for a candid conversation about the ways Gibel’s team engages customers and sells cars in the current COVID-19 crisis. Gibel details how his team appraises cars, desks deals and delivers vehicles to customers in a safe, socially distant manner. Gibel and Kondik also share how today’s digitally driven customer experiences will define how dealers make deals in the future.

  • Dealer Voices: “Moving the Market to My Store”
    Host: Randy Kobat    Guest: Jake Sodikoff

    April 22, 2020 — In this installment of the vAuto Podcast Retail Revival series, host Randy Kobat and Jake Sodikoff, dealer principal at Steven Nissan in Harrisonburg, Virginia, discuss how Sodikoff liquidated his used vehicle inventory, reset his inventory Cost to Market position through careful acquisitions, and began to capture retail sales despite the current COVID-19 crisis. Sodikoff shares how he and his team value used vehicles amid uncertainty about the accuracy of valuation benchmarks, and how they provide at-home services for their sales and service customers.

  • Making Sense of Wholesale Valuations and Vehicle Sales
    Host: Lance Helgeson    Guest: Patrick Janes

    April 22, 2020 — In this episode, vAuto Podcast host Lance Helgeson and Patrick Janes, director of business development for Stockwave, discuss how the current crisis has caused uncertainty in wholesale valuations and created an opportunity for dealers to use MMR Retention to gauge wholesale valuations. The episode also examines recent wholesale sales that provide a ray of hope that the market is moving and offering an outlet for liquidity as dealers grapple with fewer retail sales, incoming trade-ins and aged inventory. Ready to dive deeper? Check out out the Auction Buying Calculator and Patrick Janes’ webinar on best practices for acquiring used vehicle inventory in a digital used car environment.

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