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Feb 22, 2005

Dealers Give Automotive Internet High Marks on Its 10th Anniversary

Dealers Give Automotive Internet High Marks on Its 10th Anniversary Irvine, CA, February 22, 2005 –In honor of the Automotive Internet’s 10th anniversary, Autobytel Inc. recently surveyed car dealers nationwide to find out how the Internet has impacted their dealerships – and to what effect. The majority of dealer respondents credit the Internet with improvements across virtually every dealership department – from sales and customer retention, to finance and insurance and parts and service, to marketing and operations.

According to the Autobytel survey, dealers agree that the Internet/online technologies have:

  • lowered marketing/sales costs (66%),
  • improved customer relations (84%),
  • made it easier to manage customer information (92%),
  • helped them retain more sales customers (78%),

  • helped them retain more service customers (53%),
  • increased the number of financing customers (65%), and
  • helped them provide marketing/sales information more easily and quickly (96%)

Responses were similarly positive when dealers were asked to either agree or disagree with a series of assertions about the Internet’s impact on their dealerships. For example, 80% either “strongly agreed” or “agreed” that the Internet has helped them sell more new vehicles, while 77% strongly agreed/ agreed that it has helped them sell more used vehicles.

The Internet’s most positive impact, according to dealers, may be in the area of CRM. Sixty-two percent strongly agreed/agreed that they’ve successfully used the Internet to retain more customers who previously purchased a new or used vehicle from their dealership. Eighty-eight percent strongly agreed/agreed that the Internet has improved customer relationship management, overall, at their dealership.

“Ten years ago, many dealers were skeptical about the Internet’s impact on their traditional way of doing business,” said Autobytel Inc. President and CEO Jeffrey Schwartz. “Our survey sheds light on how retailers have since evolved to take advantage of the medium’s unique communications and marketing abilities. In just 10 short years, dealers have gone from being notorious ‘techno-phobes’ to one of the most technologically advanced retail segments in the world.”, the very first online auto information and buying website, went live in March 1995.

Survey conducted among Autobytel Inc. dealers during January 2005. For complete results, contact Joe Foster 323.960.1360.

About Autobytel Inc.
Autobytel Inc. (Nasdaq: ABTLE), a leading Internet automotive marketing services company, helps retailers sell cars and manufacturers build brands through marketing, advertising, data and CRM (customer relationship management) products and programs. The Company owns and operates the automotive websites,,,,, and, as well as AIC (Automotive Information Center), a trusted industry source of automotive marketing data and technology for over 20 years. Autobytel is also a leader in dealership lead management and CRM solutions and owns and operates AVV, Inc., a top provider of dealership CRM and sales management products, and Retention Performance Marketing, Inc. (RPM‚), which powers dealerships with cutting-edge customer loyalty and retention marketing programs. As the Internet's largest new car buying service, Autobytel generates over a billion dollars a month in car sales for dealers through its services and was the most visited new car buying and research destination in 2004, reaching millions of car shoppers as they made their vehicle buying decisions. Autobytel's car-selling sites and lead management products are used by more of the nation's top-100 e-dealers than any other program.

Autobytel Inc. Media Relations
Melanie Webber, Autobytel Inc., 949.862.3023 (
Betsy Smith Isroelit, RBI Communications, 323.960.1360, ext. 17 (
Joe Foster, RBI Communications, 323.960.1360, ext. 13 (