Auction Buzz

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Online Car Auction Systems



I get it…..

The Automotive Industry has to embrace emerging technologies…..

Mobile technology is no doubt at the for front of this movement…..

We, as professionals, need to educate ourselves to understand the impact of mobile tech…..

Specifically, mobile app technology…..

We need to determine if a mobile app:

  • solves pain points…..
  • aids in our growth…..
  • provides an improved level of service and convenience…..
  • will engage car buyers…..
  • will make us more efficient…..

Auto wholesalers must concern themselves with the subject of mobile tech tools that allow us to buy and sell…..

The online car auction systems…..

These mobile platforms allow us to engage in direct dealer to dealer transactions…..

With unprecedented speed and immediacy……

A competitive auction- anywhere, anytime……


All the players offering these auction services please take note…..

Advertising that one of your features is to ELIMINATE the middle man…..

NAMELY me…..

Couldn’t be farther from the truth…..






Companies such as TRADE REV, DRIVIN, APPRAISAL LANE, and ACV Auctions all have developed great tools that are gaining traction…..

As I assess what tech tools are right for our operation, the same theme is implied or touted by their creators…..


Eliminate the headaches of traditional auctions…..

Save on fees and transportation…..

Find your dream customer who will pay you the most for your vehicle…..



What the hell am I doing here then?


F.C. Clark, in his book ‘Principal of Marketing’ says “There have always been those who believe that a large number of middlemen between producer and consumer cause and increase marketing costs”

While the trend towards direct marketing of cars and trucks from retail dealer to retail dealer is, no doubt, developing daily…..

The function of the wholesaler remains…..

It is the useful services the wholesaler provides that makes it possible for supplies of diverse quantity and variety to reach the ultimate customer…..

I’ve heard all the arguments:

“Wholesaler profit margins reduce the amount you can give your customer for their trade”

“Wholesalers are obstacles that hinder retail dealers ability to make deals”

“If a wholesaler is selling you something, his prices are exorbitant. You paid too much”

“Wholesalers are transfer agents, they just drive a vehicle from one lot to the next”

“Wholesalers are parasites thriving at the expense of the consumer and retailer”

“Retail dealers can buy inventory directly from sellers, no need for a middleman”

And you know what?

Those are all true…..

Some of the time…..

The online auction app developers would have you believe that the UTOPIAN buyer for your trade-in or aged unit is just sitting with their phone in hand…..

Ready to give you what you need any time, day or night…..

Any time of the year…..

And they are…..

As long as you have the perfect piece!


Low mileage……

Clean car fax…..

Right color…

Right equipment…..

Always Serviced…..

Only driven on Sunday…..

Needs nothing…..

I’ll be the first to admit you don’t need me bidding on line with a car or truck like that…..


The last time I checked…..

The Auto Industry is far from Utopian…..

There are:

Motor noises…..

Multiple accidents on auto check…..

Cars with 150,000, 200,000 or more miles on them…..

Cars with dents, doinks, and dinks everywhere…..

Convertibles getting traded in December…..

Plow trucks getting traded in July…..

Salvage titles…..

Cargo vans wreaking of fuel oil…..

Factory recalls…..

Export pieces with no exporters in the audience…..

And on…..

and on…..

and on…..

The services of a wholesaler are indispensable for the smooth flow of ALL wholesale units…..

We are an important link in the distribution chain…..

Wholesalers relieve retail dealers of troubled units…..

Wholesale dealers provide information about equipment options, desirable years of production, and other factors that affect value…..

Wholesalers buy 52 weeks a year, not just when their inventory is low…..

We can safely say that wholesalers play a pivotal  role in the Automotive business…..

The chain of supply from dealer to dealer is and always will be dependent on the existence of the wholesaler to some degree.

And that chain cannot be broken merely for the sake of eliminating the wholesaler…..



The auction lanes were buzzing this week…..

I was surprised how many dealers came out in the frigid temperatures here in the Northeast……

I suspect most were as disappointed as I was at the meager selection available…..

Auction pre-sale listings of lease lane cars seem extra light…..

It looks as though the January “car drought” season is upon us…..

If you’re looking to build you’re inventory for the coming spring market, you’ll best be served to explore as many venues as you can…..

Try to get a few every day…..

Demand looks strong right out of the gate…..

So the idea you’ll go to one auction and load up will be difficult…..

All of our New Car dealers we buy from directly are also cleaned out of trades…..

Better keep a close eye on them, maybe drive through twice…..

Happy hunting!!


Out for now,


Barry J. Neuman

Member Manheim’s “Superseller” Club