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Software & Technology

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November 2017, F&I and Showroom - WebXclusive

Drive Motors Preps Dealers for Cyber Monday, Offers 2018 Predictions

By Michaela Kwoka-Coleman

Drive Motors’ Aaron Krane predicted that, for 2018, dealerships that embrace digital dealmaking will become known as the ecommerce hubs of their regions, a move that will end up pressuring manufactures to sell their cars directly online as well.

Tags: digital retailing, Drive Motors, online F&I

October 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

The Past, Present and Shifting Future of F&I

By Lloyd Trushel

Finance teams of the future will be staffed with professionals whose goals align with those of the dealer and whose jobs are supported — not replaced — by new and emerging technology.

Tags: Customer Experience, digital retailing, F&I manager, F&I process, F&I products, online F&I

October 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

There is Power in Alliances

By John Vecchioni

Top trainer lists four ways to build an interdepartmental culture that rewards customers while maximizing the opportunity for F&I product sales.

Tags: Customer Experience, F&I office, F&I process, F&I products, showroom

October 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Bridging the Digital GAP

By Scott Hendriks and Vincent Weir

Once the king of the car-buying process, dealers are under attack in today’s Digital Age. Industry insiders believe auto finance sources hold the key to restoring order.

Tags: auto finance, digital marketing, digital retailing, direct lending, Indirect Lending, online F&I

September 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

F&I’s Compliance Driver

By Gil Van Over

An electronic menu can do more than drive the F&I process. Compliance expert offers standards and practices you can use to unlock an emenu’s true potential.

Tags: compliance, desking, digital retailing, F&I manager, F&I process, online F&I

September 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Industry Reacts to GM's Disclosure Policy

By Gregory Arroyo

General Motors dealers who sell non-GM service contracts, parts and accessories must now disclose to their customers that the products are not backed by the automaker. Dealer trade groups believe the OEM’s stated goal of enhanced ‘safety and transparency’ is not the real reason for the new policy.

Tags: aftermarket accessories, compliance, customer disclosures, dealers, F&I managers, General Motors, parts and service, vehicle service contracts

August 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Setting Up the Edesk

By Gil Van Over

Continuing with his noble effort to define the edealership, the magazine’s resident compliance pro explains why the desking process is ripe for digitization.

Tags: auto finance, compliance, desking, digital retailing, F&I manager, online F&I

August 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Disbanding the 'Seven Car Club'

By Reuben Muinos

Sales expert lists three tasks dealers must complete to rid their showrooms of underperforming sales pros.

Tags: Business Development Center, DealerSocket, digital retailing, internet department, Internet Leads, Internet Shopper, showroom

August 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

The Connected-Car Opportunity

OnStar now counts 12 million customers globally, nearly half of whom are fleet customers. The service’s mobile app surpassed 1.5 billion interactions in December 2016. General Motors’ Greg Ross said the real innovation is OnStar the device, which establishes a link between a vehicle’s databus and the cellular infrastructure. The vehicle data flowing through that two-way connection is paving the way to future capabilities and services.

By Gregory Arroyo

Two major players in the aftermarket telematics space are attempting to do what others have failed to achieve: carve out a profit opportunity for dealers in today’s connected-car evolution.

Tags: Connected Vehicle, Kahu, LoJack, Spireon, telematics

July 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Missed Calls, Missed Sales

By Erik Nachbahr

Despite today’s digital drive, call volumes at dealerships continue to rise. Dealership tech expert breaks down the two biggest phone problems that drive customers away.

Tags: Business Development Center, Car Buyers, internet department, Internet Leads, showroom

July 2017, F&I and Showroom - WebXclusive

FIDOY Nomination Period Extended to July 21

By Editorial Staff

The magazine has extended the nomination period for its 2017 F&I Dealer of the Year contest to July 21. Dealership employees, general agents, vendors, finance sources, and F&I product providers are encouraged to nominate their stores and dealer clients.

Tags: American Financial & Automotive Services, DOY Pacesetters, DOY Winners, F&I office

June 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Defining the Edealership

By Gil Van Over

Evolving times require evolving minds. Compliance expert offers a case study to help conceptualize the concept of converting brick-and-mortar dealerships into internet sales hubs.

Tags: digital retailing, econtracting, edealership

June 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

The Digital Evangelist

Integrating Dealertrack into Cox Automotive wasn’t Mark O’Neil’s only focus when he was named COO in March 2016. He was also charged with bringing together the company’s four business verticals — Retail Solutions, Inventory Solutions, Media Solution and Financial Solutions — to create what he called ‘One Cox Automotive.’

By Gregory Arroyo

Cox Automotive’s Mark O’Neil talks to the editor about MakeMyDeal’s future, digital retailing, and the fate of the F&I office.

Tags: Cox Automotive, Dealertrack, digital retailing, eMenu, MakeMyDeal, Mark O'Neil, online F&I

May 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Out of State, Out of Mind

©gettyimages.com/MrJub

By Jim Leman

Dealers who ignore the growing number of out-of-state buyers do so at their own peril. Operations expert offers a roundup of new technology for an emerging market.

Tags: Department of Motor Vehicles, electronic lien and titles, F&I technology

May 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

The Evolving Market for Surety Bonds

©iStockphoto.com/AdrianHancu

By Jason O'Leary

Big changes at the state level make now a good time to evaluate your dealer bond costs and requirements.

April 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

5 Tech Tools From NADA 2017

By Gregory Arroyo

There were plenty of new innovations on display in and around NADA 2017. The editor takes you on a tour of five new tech tools aiming to help dealers land more sales and F&I opportunities.

Tags: auto finance, AutoFi, ChannelNet, Darwin Automotive, DealerSocket, desking, digital retailing, digitla marketing, F&I menu, online F&I, WebBuy

April 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

New-Age Sales

Pictured are Roadster COO Rudi Thun and CEO and founder Andy Moss. The latter was formerly head of vehicles for eBay Motors and COO of CarWoo! The San Francisco-based firm evolved from a California broker site to digital retailing solution provider in June 2016.

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Roadster’s Andrew Moss and Rudi Thun say they’ve created a digital transactional platform that works both in a buyer’s home and in the showroom. But as they readily admit, not every dealer is the ideal user.

Tags: digital marketing, digital retailing, online F&I, Roadster

March 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Remote Deliveries: Proceed With Caution

By Gil Van Over

When it comes to out-of-state deliveries, the magazine’s resident compliance guru says proceed with caution. He lays out a simple process for guarding your dealership against ID thieves.

Tags: compliance, digital retailing, F&I process, online F&I, Red Flags Rule, Remote Deliveries

February 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Treat Red Flags Like Subprime Stips

By Gil Van Over

Well-meaning F&I managers can unwittingly clear a Red Flag before it is actually cleared. Compliance expert has a simple plan to button up your documentation process.

Tags: compliance, F&I manager, Red Flags Rule, Stips, subprime

February 2017, F&I and Showroom - Feature

The Million-Dollar Plan

By Michael Gorun

Fixed-ops expert says dealers who aren’t selling prepaid maintenance plans in service are leaving millions of dollars on the service drive floor each year.

Tags: F&I products, Michael Gorun, Prepaid Maintenance, Service Advisors, service drive sales

February 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

F&I to Go

un Toyota’s Showroom2Go program combines process with technology. For the latter, the dealership partnered with website provider fusionZONE Automotive to customize the online buying platform. It includes a finance module, trade-in value calculator, and the software that puts it all together: Dealmaker.

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Sun Toyota’s John Marazzi was already an internet sales evangelist before launching a fully online process in September 2016. In its first month alone, the program delivered 75 closed deals and an F&I per-copy average that was just $45 shy of the in-store average.

Tags: digital retailing, online F&I, Sun Toyota, Test Drive, Toyota, vehicle delivery

January 2017, Auto Dealer Today - WebXclusive

Set Your Cybersecurity Fears Aside

By Steve Cottrell

Have you received letters from your providers that were full of intimidating technical phrasings — things like 'unacceptable levels of risk/control' and 'data integrity issues'? Those terms certainly sound scary, but as Franklin D. Roosevelt once opined, 'The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.'

Tags: Authenticom, Cyber Security, DealerVault, DMS, DMS integration, Stephen Contrell

January 2017, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

There's an App for That

The executive team for AutoGravity includes CTO Martin Prescher, CEO Andreas Hinrichs, COO Nicholas Stellman, and COO Serge Vartanov.

By Eric Gandarilla

AutoGravity’s Andreas Hinrichs believes his mobile financing app can serve as the ‘digital glue’ between dealers and finance sources, delivering ready-to-buy consumers to dealer showrooms.

Tags: F&I technology, Fletcher Jones, Mobile Applications, technology, Vehicle Financing

November 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Formalized and Documented

By Gil Van Over

The magazine's compliance pro believes the FTC may soon take a page out of the CFPB's playbook when it comes to regulating dealers. He explains how dealers can get prepared.

Tags: CFPB, compliance, F&I, FTC

October 2016, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Examining the Bricks-to-Clicks Push

Moderated by F&I Administration’s Kumar Kathinokkula, the P&A Leadership Summit’s ‘Presenting F&I Products Online” panel discussion featured (l-r) Matt Nowicki of IAS, The Impact Group’s Mark Thorpe, Cox Automotive’s Brett Pomerantz, Dan Lievrouw of American Guardian, F&I Director Justin Gasman.

By Gregory Arroyo

Tech vendors believe the industry needs to respond to customer dissatisfaction with the F&I process, but not everyone believes moving the process online is the answer.

Tags: Industry Summit, NADA, online F&I, technology

August 2016, F&I and Showroom - WebXclusive

Magazine Offers Details on Compliance Summit Program

By Tariq Kamal

Scheduled for Aug. 29-30, Compliance Summit is designed to deliver a crash course in federal regulations and enforcement action to help dealers, agents and industry execs build sustainable sales and F&I processes without sacrificing productivity and profitability.

Tags: ARMD resource Group, CNA National, Compli, compliance, Compliance Summit, Dealer Compliance Consultants, EFG Companies, F&I Express, gvo3 & Associates, Mosaic Compliance Consultants, NFADA, Reynolds & Reynolds, The Warranty Group, Total Dealer Compliance, UDS

July 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Asset Protection

Courtesy of iStock. 

By David Nathanson

Retail expert says the more dealers carve out their place in the Digital Age, the more their proprietary and customer data becomes a legal and financial liability to their dealership.

Tags: Customer Privacy, Data, Dealership Systems, technology

June 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Hanging in the Balance

With moderator Robert Harkins looking on, Mosaic Compliance Services’ Jim Ganther offered his take on what the November elections could mean to the men and women manning the F&I office. If a Democrat is elected president, he said, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s fair lending crackdown could intensify.

By Gregory Arroyo

The compliance gurus at F&I Think Tank agreed that a lot is riding on the outcome of November’s presidential elections — including the fate of the F&I department.

Tags: Adverse Action Notice, CFPB, compliance, Dealer Summit, F&I products

April 2016, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

A New Direction

Pictured are Principle Auto CEO Abigail Kampmann and COO Mark Smith. Nine months after cofounding their four-store dealer group, they took a chance on a new auto-loan equity mining tool and marketing platform called VehicleXchange. It was developed by Dallas-based Pearl Technology Holdings LLC. At BMW of San Antonio, one of the group’s three Texas stores, sales grew 36% in the same year the dealership installed Pearl’s solution. 

By Eric Gandarilla

Principle Auto’s Mark Smith found success after abandoning some of his group’s tried-and-true sales strategies. Now he’s looking to take that change even further.

Tags: Equity Mining, Pearl Technology, Principle Auto, ShowroomXpress, technology, VehicleXchange

March 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Menu Selling Reloaded

Photo courtesy of iStock. 

By Rick McCormick

F&I trainer believes new technology and expert salesmanship can combine to create an efficient and productive menu-selling process.

Tags: F&I menu, F&I Menu Presentation, technology, Tips

March 2016, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Mastering the Menu

By Gerry Gould

Does the transition to the F&I menu presentation stress you out? F&I trainer has the three-part cure.

Tags: Creative Selling, F&I menu, F&I Menu Presentation, F&I products

February 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Want vs. Need: A Lesson in Salesmanship

Courtesy of iStockPhoto.

By George Spatt

Industry veteran tells an entertaining tale of a conquest sale from 40 years ago to relay three key lessons about salesmanship and the art of listening.

Tags: Dodge, sales, Tips

February 2016, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Perfecting the F&I Turnover

Courtesy of iStockPhoto. 

By Anna Puzier

Expert says salespeople play a critical role in what happens in the F&I office. She lists four ways they can successfully pave the road to back-end sales.

Tags: Finance, Millenials, Profitability, sales

January 2016, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Connection Commerce

By Gregory Arroyo

The editor goes one-on-one with MakeMyDeal founder Mike Burgiss, who says his company is making progress in its drive to connect car buyers to dealers online. Can he do the same for F&I?

Tags: car buying, Cox Automotive, F&I Connect, MakeMyDeal, Mobile Applications

December 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Out of the Box

Impact Group's Mark Thorpe says moving F&I product info online might hurt, not help, F&I product sales. 

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Panelists and presenters at Industry Summit 2015 tackled online automotive retailing and what it means to move F&I out of the box and into the Digital Age.

Tags: Cox Automotive, digital, F&I Express, MakeMyDeal, MaximTrak, NADA, Protective Asset Protection Division, RouteOne

December 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

The Year Ahead: Part One

By David Nathanson

Dealer operations expert puts 2015 in the rearview mirror and identifies trends in sales, compliance and recalls that will affect dealers in 2016.

Tags: AutoNation, compliance, SAAR, Sonic Automotive, vehicle recall

November 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

F&I’s Shifting Paradigm

By Chris Meacham

An Ohio-based general agent believes the F&I industry is ignoring a paradigm shift and a chance to deliver what consumers really want: a better experience.

Tags: Customer Experience, Customer Interview, Customer Service, F&I products, mobile menu

November 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Agents of Change

Northwest Honda’s GM Tony Carter and business managers Sam Baylasy (center) and Camille Kim (right) are putting information about F&I online to build trust with customers.

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Studies show that change is coming to the finance department, and dealerships like Northwest Honda and Southern Chrysler-Jeep are making sure their F&I offices are ahead of the digital curve.

Tags: CoVideo, EasyCare, F&I products, F&I Video, Online Buying, Online Marketing, Service Contracts, Video Advertising, YouTube

November 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Fraud Alert

In January 2015, a man using a fake name purchased at least two vehicles online from Louisiana dealers with the intention of shipping them overseas.

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Mansfield Auto World employees were stunned when a seemingly normal online transaction nearly turned into an international crime. Authorities say the dealership was the victim of a troubling new trend in auto theft.

Tags: Credit Cards, fraud, identity theft, Internet Leads, Internet Shopper, Red Flags Rule

November 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Sign on the Electronic Line

Hudson Toyota in Madisonville, Ky., is one of the 1,300 or so Toyota, Lexus and Scion dealerships now econtracting with Toyota Financial Services. The captive processed its one millionth electronic contract last October. Today, 75% of the contracts it receives are submitted electronically.

By Gregory Arroyo and Justina Ly

Faster funding has always been a key selling point for dealers when it comes to econtracting. That could change as the industry pushes for a fully online transaction.

Tags: econtracting, iPad, Sonic Automotive, Toyota Financial Services

October 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

5 Keys to Going Social

By Bruce Rzentkowski

The magazine’s resident retail expert identifies five elements every social media strategy must have to ensure the marketing channel doesn’t become a big waste of time.

Tags: marketing, social media, social media marketing, technology

September 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Setting the Pace

By Editorial Staff

Meet the five finalist for the 2015 F&I Dealer of the Year award, the winner of which was announced earlier this month at the magazine's annual conference.

Tags: DOY Pacesetters, F&I Dealer of the Year, F&I Pacesetters, F&I products, Industry Summit

August 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Trust Issues

By Gregory Arroyo

The breakup between TrueCar and AutoNation stirred up old emotions and accusations, but a former TrueCar exec believes both companies will survive the dustup.

Tags: AFSA Vehicle Finance Conference, AutoNation, Internet Leads, Ken Potter, lead generation, Michael E. Maroone, Scott Painter, TrueCar

July 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Status Update

Earlier this year, LaFontaine Automotive Group launched an in-house marketing team to handle both traditional and digital media. 

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

Marketing experts and dealers alike agree that dealers who ignore social media are more than behind the times — they are driving away potential customers.

Tags: Digital Air Strike, Facebook, facebook advertising, Online Marketing, online reputation management, social media

June 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Too Much Information

By Dave Druzynski

If you are Googling prospective employees or checking out their social media profiles, you could be running afoul of anti-discrimination laws.

Tags: employment, Human Resources, social media

May 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Business as Usual

By Tariq Kamal

A Q&A with Warren Buffett and Larry Van Tuyl headlined the 2015 NADA/J.D. Power Automotive Forum, where the two executives discussed the direction of the nation’s fourth-largest dealer group post-acquisition.

Tags: Acquisition, Cecil Van Tuyl, Cox Automotive, Facebook, JD Power, NADA, National Automobile Dealers Association, New York, Sandy Schwartz, Van Tuyl Auto Group, Warren Buffet

April 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Myth Busting

By David Robertson

The AFIP’s executive director wasn’t surprised to learn that dealers are once again upset at TrueCar, especially since the firm’s marketing still plays on perceptions that are simply not true.

Tags: haggle, online shoppers, TrueCar

April 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

5 Steps to Data Security

By David Nathanson

Big data is no longer just an asset; it can also be a liability. Retail expert shares five simple steps to keeping your data safe and preventing your dealership from becoming a statistic.

Tags: compliance, Data, data protection, PERSONAL IDENTIFICATION INFORMATION

March 2015, F&I and Showroom - Feature

Zurich Takes a Bite of the Apple

By Gregory Arroyo

At NADA 2015, Zurich North America defied expectations by debuting an F&I process built around iPad technology.

Tags: iPad, iPad Menu, Zurich

March 2015, F&I and Showroom - Cover Story

Sales at Your Fingertips

By Brittany-Marie Swanson

The explosion in smartphone usage among car shoppers put phone leads ahead of Internet leads at the close of 2014, a trend reflected in the deluge of mobile-ready offerings lining the aisles at NADA 2015.

Tags: apple, Customer Loyalty, Dealertrack, Dent Wizard, DMEautomotive, Edmunds, Edmunds.com, iPad, Mobile Applications, mobile solution, NADA, NADA Convention and Expo, smartphones, VinSolutions

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