Best practices for dealer inventory images


A young woman in a van taking photos while leaning out the window

Auto buyers spend, on average, 13 hours and 55 minutes researching online before making their purchasing decision. 1 If a shopper is going to come through your dealership door, he/she will more than likely first discover the vehicle online.

To stay competitive, dealers have been forced to start refining their inventory images. Shoppers expect to see compelling images of all the important features from all different angles. Today, 40% of consumers are likely to purchase a vehicle based on images they view online without actually seeing the vehicle in person.2

Today’s dealers use lot photography, stock photography or a combination. Regardless of which of these works best for you, there are some guidelines to follow when it comes to your inventory images.

What makes the most effective image?

Strong imagery

Because 90% of shoppers consider photos extremely important, you have the opportunity to differentiate your vehicles and make them stand out immediately upon arrival to you VDP.2

Images should be high-quality and professional. Give thought to the background, the lighting and the composition. A mixture of interior and exterior angles should clearly show off the vehicle’s features. Don’t make your shoppers dig through lengthy lists to find the value-added special features that are important to them, because they most likely won’t.

Post speed and image volume

Beat your competition to the market. The sooner you can post a vehicle on your website, the sooner a shopper can see it and become interested. Even if you can get just one image up immediately, you’re in the game. Then you can go back and post the rest later. This practice has proven to turn cars faster – giving you more time to sell even more cars.

How many photos are enough to maximize the VDP views of your vehicles? You’re more likely to keep shoppers engaged and looking at your vehicles if you present them full media galleries for your inventory versus a single image. The media gallery is near the top the list for most engaging content on a VDP, second only to the vehicle price.

Dealer branding

Today, 80% of auto shoppers are relying on third-party sites to research and shop for their new vehicles.1

Since shoppers will be weeding through a multitude of vehicle photos on these sites, it is important they are able to connect your brand to your inventory photos.

Market consistently across all channels with attribution on all new and used inventory images. Include your dealership logo, name, phone number and website so that shoppers always know how to contact you from everywhere your inventory is syndicated.

We can help.

Stop dealing with missing or mediocre vehicle images. Merchandise your vehicles quickly and cost-effectively with VINpx from Autodata Solutions. The VINpx suite of image rendering services works together to communicate the whole story of your inventory and dealership the way today’s buyers consume information – visually.

Expedite your new inventory to the market with our colorized, model-specific images. Vehicles appear perfectly staged on a background of your choice and ready to buy. Year, make, model, trim, VIN, stock number, dealer branding and your contact information is included on every image.

You can also leverage your own lot photography. Autodata Solutions adds your dealership logo, name, phone number and website on every image – making it easier than ever to syndicate to third-party portals and inventory consolidators.

Learn more about VINpx or call 1-800-361-1812 (option 1).

 

Sources

1 2019 Car Buyer Journey Study, Cox Automotive

2 Every Picture Tells a Story, Cox Automotive