Online review platform Trustpilot is targeting 100% growth among its automotive clients after partnering Auto Trader to bring user-generated reviews to its platform.
Trustpilot partner director Neil Bayton told AM that the customer review specialist had struck up a partnership with DMS provider GForces earlier this year and said that he hoped the new Auto Trader agreement would bring further exposure as the business attempted to grow its client list following the addition of Arnold Clark and TrustFord in 2017.
Speaking to AM Bayton said: “We have around 100 franchised dealer clients as its stands and our aim is to grow that number 100% within 12 months.
“The partnership with Auto Trader is something that has been in the offing for quite a few months, it’s something that the dealers we work with wanted to see and I’m sure the arrangement will benefit both parties as well as consumers and dealers.”
Prospective car buyers can now consult Trustpilot reviews on dealerships and the cars they offer as part of the decision-making process.
According to Bayton Trustpilot is the sectors leading supplier of online customer reviews, its website generating 10 million unique visitors and 1.6 billion page impressions each month.
Bayton said that a proviso of their agreement with Auto Trader was that dealers could not “cherry pick” positive reviews for display on the site as it aimed to build trust through transparency.
Karolina Edwards-Smajda, Auto Trader’s retailer and consumer product director, said: “Impartial dealer reviews can be incredibly influential for consumers when searching for their next car.
“That’s why we launched our review platform back in 2015 which has since become a hugely effective channel for dealers to build trust with potential car buyers and demonstrate value beyond price alone. We now have over 6,000 dealers with over 350,000 reviews on our marketplace.
“This important partnership with Trustpilot will not only further enhance the buying experience for consumers on Auto Trader, but also help our dealer customers convert site visits to forecourt visits.”
Recent research commissioned by Trustpilot and undertaken by the Centre for Economic and Business Research (CEBR) recently forecast that 20% of all cars in the UK are expected to be sold online by 2027, shifting £41bn of automotive revenue online.
Nathan Quayle, group marketing manager at Fords of Winsford, said: “We fully believe that reviews are one of the best ways for our prospective customers to gain trust in our service and offering before they commit to a purchase.
“It’s a chance for us to really show off to customers why we are the best place to buy their next car.
“Integrating Trustpilot reviews into the Auto Trader marketplace is a great development for dealers like ours that operate transparently and openly.
“It’s also a chance for us to learn from our customers who share their experience of buying a car with us and if those experiences are ever negative then our customer experience team can jump in and investigate.”