TradePending TV

The Anti Case Study

Most case studies are about success. This case study is the opposite of that. It’s about a tactic that absolutely bombed. 

The customer here, who remains anonymous for obvious reasons, had the best of intentions. They were ready to put the stake in the ground and help people buy a car online. They had the people, the process, and the tools in place. 

Unfortunately for us, they initially interpreted “selling a car online” to mean getting rid of the other payment calculator on their site, which  meant slowly removing our Payments product off their site, bit by bit. 

Payments is our website conversion tool (not a digital retailing tool) that converts website traffic into leads like crazy via a payment calculator on steroids. 

They signed up for Payments in July of 2023, and let’s look at their historical lead volume.

In November, they removed basically half of the functionality of the Payments tool as part of their phase-out to focus not on website conversion, but selling cars online. They went from 660 leads and a 29% form conversion in August to 60 leads and a 19% form conversion rate in December. They canceled the product in March of this year, with only one tiny piece remaining, the piece that let people calculate a payment as a next step as a part of our trade-in tool.

The same small percentage of buyers that wanted to start the car buying process online still did, but everyone else abandoned the process. Those lost leads were never replaced. That business went elsewhere. 

It didn’t take long for the sales and marketing teams, and the leadership, to come to this conclusion: we need both. That is, they need both the “the buy a car online” experience and the “just help me get a freaking payment estimate or shop your inventory by what I can afford in under a minute” experience. They need both because most buyers visiting your site are not ready to buy a car online, which sounds obvious when written like that.

If you meet the buyers where the are, with digital retailing tools, payment tools, chat tools, trade-in tools, all of which can absolutely 100% co-exist with each other, your website is going to be the marketing machine that you need to it be, and you’ll get more bang from your buck on your ad spend.