Get the Most Out of Your Auction Experience

What you need to compete online

Through smart sourcing of vehicles offering immediate consumer advantages, such as low-mileage and single-owners, as well as utilizing off-lease and rental conversions, you can continuously offer a supply of quality used vehicles while utilizing transactions and industry tools that consumers can trust.

Auctions are the ideal way to provide your customers with seemingly endless access to vehicle inventory. But are you getting the most out of your auction experience?

We’ve contacted some of Canada’s leading automotive industry experts for their advice on how to do it.

Auction Access Made Easy

With global headquarters in Toronto and more than 350 employees in Canada alone, TradeRev is a real-time app providing a seamless digital auction experience, where a dealership can buy, sell and pay for a car in-app. This ever-innovating technology has the advantage of being part of the Kar Auction Services (KAR) family, including a partnership with ADESA, another KAR business unit, which offers dealers a true end-to-end solution, from research to the delivery.

According to John Christianson, TradeRev Director of Sales, “TradeRev is an anywhere and anytime auction. Whether you’re at your desk or on the dock, you can login to TradeRev right from your phone or desktop, start bidding on vehicles or launch an auction of your own. Auctions only last 45 minutes, so for dealers it’s an extremely quick turnaround. We’re also on the cutting edge of technology with AI-driven tools like H-Vision℠, that fully automates condition report visualization. TradeRev has more than 9,000 users in Canada and over 17,000 in North America.”

Christianson continues, “Simply put, TradeRev makes auctions fast, fair and easy. While we have a strong digital and physical auction experience through TradeRev and ADESA, by working together, we help our customers sell and source inventory by handing-off no-sales from TradeRev to ADESA, and vice versa.” Users of TradeRev can choose to finance their purchases with ACH or floor plan companies like AFC, and even pay, coordinate and track transportation all from the palm of their hand.

Top 3 Tips for getting the most out of your auction experience with TradeRev according to Christianson:

  1. Get to know your sales representative, as they can really help ensure you have a great experience and get the most out of TradeRev services.
  2. Be completely transparent and open about declarations on your vehicles–it will help your remarketing reputation and save you a lot of time.
  3. Enter your floor prices (at current wholesale market values) so that the vehicle can automatically move into closing status and sell when bidding meets or surpasses your floor price. This is a tremendous time saver for sellers and buyers and it actually makes bidders want to bid more often on your vehicles.

Christianson advises not to make this number one mistake when dealing with any auction service: “Whether online or in-lane, dealerships forget (or don’t know) that how they treat their buyers at auction will directly influence the wholesale market values they achieve as sellers. Bidders will naturally gravitate towards sellers that have invested in building a reputation of being high converters.

These sellers respond right away, or very quickly, to bidder offers, sell their vehicles at current wholesale values, accurately disclose all known declarations, and quickly make things right if a mistake is made. These sellers behave like many of the professional re-marketers from the large volume commercial sellers at auction; they have a vision of how they wish to be perceived and of maintaining a good reputation. They back this vision with a solid re-marketing strategy that guides their approach on a daily basis.”

Before buying on TradeRev, Christianson suggests knowing what you’re looking for and how much you’re willing to spend, along with doing your research, previewing upcoming vehicles and adding them to your TradeRev Watchlist.

Submitting proxy bids helps to ensure you won’t miss out on a good deal. Christianson continues, “As a seller on TradeRev, ensure your vehicles are in preview as early as possible and make them viewable to astute bidders that can place proxies before the actual event auction. Also, be sure to represent your vehicles in person or online to quickly respond to offers. Bidders don’t appreciate having their money tied up for any length of time. Lastly, review your own condition reports for accuracy before the event auction to avoid arbitrations and to maintain a good reputation.”

TradeRev wants you to win more trades and sell more used cars. While consumers aren’t able to use TradeRev directly, dealers can also use the app to live-appraise vehicles for their customers, essentially setting the market value for that vehicle in real-time. “This allows a dealer and the consumer to have a transparent conversation around the value of their trade—it’s simple, fast, and delivers a great customer experience,” says Christianson.

TradeRev is keen on creating loyalty with dealers by providing best-in-class service and being driven by the voice of the customer, where suggestions by dealers are continuously taken into consideration for software functionality updates that could help improve their in-app experience, and to ultimately help sell more cars. 

“There’s an entire team dedicated to ensuring dealers can always get the answers they need, when they need them. Time is money for dealers, so by providing them a digital tool that allows them to buy and sell at a high velocity, while giving them amazing support, we’re able to create a lasting partnership,” explains Christianson.

TradeRev is available for both iOS and Android, as well as your desktop. Signing up with TradeRev is fast, easy and free – once the app is downloaded, TradeRev can register a dealer in as quickly as 15 minutes. 

The Standard option offers you everything you need to transact on TradeRev, but Pro takes it to a whole new level by offering reduced buy fees, guaranteed funds from a sale within 48-business hours, SMS notifications on vehicles of interest, vehicle recommendations and vehicle smart lists, that get to know your preferences for a custom experience. At just $199 a month for TradeRev Pro, Christianson promises you won’t regret the decision.

Reports Consumers Can Trust

CARFAX Canada boasts a 95% satisfaction with dealers in regards to establishing trust with used vehicle buyers. Formerly known as CARPROOF, CARFAX Canada started in London, Ontario, in 2000, but has now grown into a multi-product 40 | THE ONTARIO DEALERcompany, with over 150 employees across Canada. 

According to Shawn Vording, Vice President of Automotive Sales at CARFAX Canada, “CARFAX Canada ran over 3.7 million reports last year, helping Canadians get the information they needed to buy or sell vehicles. When used car shoppers see the CARFAX Canada Advantage Dealer logo, they know they can buy with greater confidence. Participating dealers get perks, such as exclusive access to free Advantage point-of-purchase materials for their store and their website, that allow them to leverage our trusted brand.”

Recognized and trusted by consumers, CARFAX Canada offers three key products to help ensure a transparent used car buying process. “The CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report, the Vehicle Valuation Report and the Vehicle Trade-in Widget – CARFAX Canada empowers Canadian automotive dealers with key insights to make better decisions about buying and selling used vehicles.

These products use billions of data records from thousands of unique sources and contain unique data that isn’t available anywhere else,” explains Vording. The CARFAX Canada Advantage Dealer program takes the transparency process a step further by highlighting dealers who are committed to offering a vehicle history report on every car they sell.

The ADESA Canada Advantage

With 74 auction locations across North America – 14 of those in Canada – ADESA Canada provides vehicle remarketing solutions, including wholesale vehicle auction services. According to Trevor Henderson, Chief Operating Officer for ADESA Canada, “Our biggest advantage is that ADESA is part of the KAR Auction Services family. KAR has invested heavily in innovation, data and technology and in fully integrating its capabilities across all business units to offer customers an end-to-end remarketing solution. We have ancillary services to meet every customer need throughout the remarketing lifecycle of a vehicle.

Henderson continues, “Our footprint in Canada goes beyond our 14 physical locations. Digital auction platform TradeRev is also part of the KAR family. ADESA and TradeRev work closely to ensure sellers have multiple opportunities to sell their vehicles. Also, we have a robust logistics solution that moves more vehicles than any other entity in Canada.”

Henderson cautions dealers not to limit their options by looking at just one auction location by which to source or sell inventory. He suggests to diversify by using a combination of “online, in the lanes and digital auction marketplaces to expand their options and footprint, and they get a broader understanding of market values.”

Research is key. Not every dealer is serving the same customer, and not every vehicle will sell on your lot.

According to Henderson, “Research is key. Not every dealer is serving the same customer, and not every vehicle will sell on your lot. It’s important to know what will sell quickly and with the most return on investment in your particular market, and even under your rooftop. ADESA has the information to help dealers make more informed inventory sourcing decisions.” Comprised of more than 20 brands, including ADESA, the KAR group of companies is always innovating and working toward a more streamlined customer experience. ADESA provides “a seamless end-to-end vehicle remarketing experience, where dealers can not only source inventory, they can floorplan, get vehicle inspections, recondition their vehicles and even transport purchased or sold inventory, says Henderson. The ongoing collaboration between ADESA and TradeRev takes the remarketing experience from digital through physical and online.

Top 3 Tips for getting the most out of your auction experience with ADESA According to Henderson:

  1. Make use of our ADESA services and resources. We have market experts who can help buyers and sellers navigate the wholesale market.
  2. As a seller, make sure you disclose everything you know about your vehicles, stand behind your vehicles and represent your vehicles on the block. This helps build trust in you as a seller and can help develop strong relationships with your buyers.
  3. As a buyer, review all the information about the vehicles you are buying and make informed bidding decisions. You never want to regret a purchase.

Replacement Demand of Aging Vehicles

In 2016, the Canadian Vehicle Market Review by DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc. predicted the sales of used vehicles, especially younger used vehicles, “should be very healthy as the record number of vehicles sold over the last 5 years reach middle age.”

At that time, there were over 10 million vehicles on the road more than 10 years old, almost all of which would disappear by 2023 to 2024, providing about 1.3 million units of base demand.

“Add in accidented and high mileage younger vehicles, and replacement demand should be in the 1.5 to 1.8 million unit level. Dealers dominate the sale of younger used vehicles, so are perfectly positioned to capture increased used vehicle sales,” cites the report.


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