Automotive dealers will no longer have to upload their inventory to Facebook Marketplace manually. This week, Dominion Dealer Solutions’ automotive inventory software vendor, Dealer Specialties, announced that it had entered into a syndication partnership with Facebook. Dealers who use the Dealer Specialties platform will now be able to automatically batch upload their data to Marketplace.
“This will allow dealers to have more control and faster access to the inventory that’s listed,” Dealer Specialties vice president Shane Marcum (LinkedIn profile) said in a news release.
The new distribution option will be included in the current price dealers pay Dealer Specialties. More than 3,000 dealers in the United States already use the platform.
Facebook added dealer listings to its Marketplace in 2017 through earlier partnerships with Cars.com, Edmunds, Auction123, CDK Global and SocialDealer. Valuations are included too — from Kelley Blue Book.
Facebook users who see a vehicle they’re interested in can use Facebook Messenger to open a 1:1 conversation with a dealer, without needing to leave the Marketplace app.
Cars.com announced its own chat product for automotive dealers in August, allowing 24/7 “managed chat” in Marketplace via an AI-powered chatbot called “Ana Bot.”
“The managed chat functionality does an amazing job of getting shoppers’ basic information and then handing them off to us, so we don’t have to sit in front of a computer answering Facebook messages all day,” explained Kevin Jamiel, a sales manager at Chuck Nicholson Mazda in Dover, Ohio who participated in the pilot for Social Sales Drive.
Like the new Dealer Specialties functionality, Social Sales Drive also allows dealers to upload their entire inventories to Facebook.
Facebook Marketplace shows listings and dealerships within 40 miles of a persons’ location. Shoppers can filter by price, model and mileage, but should keep in mind that after viewing a vehicle, it will be advertised to them again in their Facebook news feed, along with newly-added similar vehicles.
Dominion Dealer Solutions, which is owned by Dominion Enterprises, develops customer relationship and dealer management software. It builds websites, allows for multi-channel marketing and handles reputation and social media management.