Auto Trader, the leading automotive marketplace in the U.K. has begun a new partnership with data provider and credit ratings agency Experian to help Auto Trader better understand customer’s affordability status when they use its AutoConvert platform.

The partnership will enable Auto Trader to get a broader understanding and better insight into what customers can afford and be able to offer suitable finance. Dealers using Auto Trader’s AutoConvert platform will for the first time be able to utilise Experian bureau data. This will improve dealer’s credit-risk decision-making processes and give them unique and more accurate insights into a customer’s suitability for lending.

AutoConvert users will be able to incorporate Experian data into their panel and assess customers 24 hours a day. This means they will only submit credit applications that meet borrowing criteria, making the process more efficient for both lenders and dealers. Finance applications made via will also benefit from the new partnership.

“Utilising Experian’s world class bureau data will play a key role in our commitment to making the car buying and selling experience as efficient and convenient as possible,” said Fiona Mackay, Auto Trader’s head of automotive finance and leasing.

“As well as driving more efficiency through the AutoConvert platform, it will be an important component to our future finance proposition on Auto Trader. This will benefit both consumers and our retail partners and enable them to offer the hybrid retail experience today’s car buyers are looking for.”

As part of the agreement, Auto trader will also work with Experian to deploy an enhanced car finance eligibility service. This will provide dealers and lenders with the ability to identify potential customers, who are likely to be accepted for finance, much earlier in the car-buying journey, removing applications that would be declined later in the process and improving conversion and acceptance rates.

Consumers will have a clearer picture of the financing options available to them – without it affecting their credit score – giving them the confidence to go ahead with their purchase.

“Experian data insights are renowned for helping businesses from across sectors make faster, more accurate, and better decisions, bringing enormous benefits to both them and their customers,” said Gerardo Montoya, Experian Automotive UK&I MD.

In June, Auto Trader began to trial a scheme to allow customers to complete finance agreements and approvals on its AutoConvert platform which it acquired for $25.7 million in July 2020.

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