Auto Trader’s Enhanced VIN Spec Data Boosts Revenue?

Auto Trader has partnered with manufacturers to integrate enhanced optional Vehicle Identification Number Specification (VIN Spec) data into its platforms as a response to the latest analysis showing that 46% of the retailer listed vehicles on its marketplace are missing, on average, more than half (54%) of their detailed specification, risking potential margins in the process.

Based on a sample from the eight brands providing VIN spec data of 52,000 vehicles advertised on its platform, Auto Trader found retailers were leaving an average of £361 of unrealised margins on the table, per vehicle, as a result of missing value-adding specification. However, this can be significantly higher: in the same analysis, one premium brand model was undervalued by a massive £5,587.

The enhanced VIN Spec data is a register of the optional specification items that were added to each vehicle as they were built in the factory. Implementing this data across Auto Trader’s platforms will help retailers increase margins by enabling them to accurately price their stock using precise valuations adjusted for the exact specification of each car. It will also increase efficiency, by adding optional specification details to listings automatically, removing the need for research and guess work – previously, this had to be added manually, and relied on the retailer using their own knowledge.

What’s more, it will improve the consumer experience by providing a more accurate and detailed advert, reducing the potential for customer complaints, negative reviews or even returned vehicles due to inaccurate descriptions. The optional specification details will be accessible to potential car buyers on retailers’ adverts via a clearly visible ‘Extra features’ link. 

Many retailers are already benefiting from this data integration, highlighting the accuracy of the data as well as ease of use within existing processes. Scott Greensmith, Digital Partnerships Manager at Motorpoint commented: “Auto Trader’s Vin Spec data has been a great addition to Motorpoint’s merchandising toolbox. The accuracy of the specification data is spot on, it’s easy to use and a welcome addition for our team when they are listing cars and valuing part-exchanges. Being able to access this level of information means we can provide ever higher levels of vehicle specification accuracy and it provides a big benefit for our customers when they are researching and choosing the right vehicle for their budget and lifestyle.”