As part of its commitment to help retailers convert more sales, Auto Trader is set to introduce a new digital forecourt experience on its marketplace, with the launch of Retailer Stores in February. The new fully customisable virtual storefronts are designed to make it easier for businesses to build trust and confidence in their brand, which according to nine out of 10 buyers, is essential when choosing their next car.
The launch of Retailer Stores will enable retailers to significantly enhance their digital profile by creating their own dedicated brand destination on Auto Trader by prominently displaying specific details about their business, including available stock, reviews, COVID-19 safety features and online retail services (i.e. click and collect, and home delivery), along with rich imagery and video content.
Auto Trader awards and accolades, including the Auto Trader Retailer Awards and AT Highly Rated, will automatically be featured prominently with their respective logos, whilst other notable industry awards, such as the Car Dealer Used Car Awards / Motor Trader Industry Awards / AM Awards, can be added manually to further help retailers stand out from their competitors. What’s more, from the spring, industry accreditation, including manufacturer approved schemes and other approved associations, will also be added.
In addition to being highly visible across Auto Trader, Retailer Stores will boast strong SEO equity which means consumers looking for retailers on search engines will see the respective digital forecourts at the top of their search results.
The development of Retailer Stores has been based on extensive consumer research, as well as participation amongst Auto Trader’s retailer partners, including testing and feedback through surveys and in-depth one-on-one interviews.
Commenting on the launch of Retailer Stores, Auto Trader’s director of commercial products, Karolina Edwards-Smajda, said: “We designed and created this new functionality in response to requests from our retailer partners who wanted help in driving engagement in their brand and stock. We know car buyers shop car first, with 99% starting their search not knowing which retailer they want to buy from. This new fully customisable digital forecourt experience will help retailers stand out from their competitors, and ultimately help turn searches into sales by enabling them to attract, engage and convert buyers from amongst the millions of consumers who visit our marketplace every day.”
Upon going live in February Auto Trader will automatically populate some key details, including the business name, logo, contact options, and reviews, as well as advertised and un-advertised stock. However, utilising simple self-serve features in their Auto Trader Portal accounts, retailers can easily add further information to create their own personalised storefront, including an ‘about us’ profile, YouTube videos and imagery, opening hours, key business highlights, ‘why buy from us’ details, customised featured stock, available services and facilities, as well as highlighting their latest 5 star reviews.
Retailers have been given early access to a new area in their Portal accounts where they can customise their individual stores in preparation for Retailer Stores going live in late February 2021. More details can be found here: https://trade.autotrader.co.uk/products/retailer-stores
 Auto Trader Car Buyers Tracker, August 2020