Marketing | 3min Read

Four Things to be Aware of with Third-Party Lead Aggregators

Don't forget to share this post!

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Third-party lead aggregators such as CarGurus, Carfax, Edmunds, AutoTrader,, etc., can be valuable partners for dealers, but they do have limitations when it comes to their effectiveness for your dealership. Four things dealers should be aware of include:


When an in-market buyer lands on one of these sites they find the inventory from hundreds of dealers. Depending on the listing package, your inventory might not even be prominently displayed. Even worse, it’s not just your local competitors who are likely to be prominently featured, but dealers anywhere in the country who are willing to deliver the vehicle are featured. Is that fair? Plus, this often includes the all-digital players such as Carvana and Vroom.


According to VinSolutions data1, on average 6.2% of third-party leads convert to sales – and the source of this statistic is a sister-company of Auto Trader. Conversely, direct leads to dealer websites should convert at 5% to 10%, especially when traffic is the result of carefully curated data, targeting, and sales-focused campaigns. Long gone are the days when dealers accepted 1.5% as a good conversation rate on direct leads. Consumers prefer to visit dealer sites directly, so we just need to help them find the right one – yours! According to a Statista, 33% of new car buyers finish their research on a dealership website.

Hidden Cost of Inefficiency

High volumes of non-converting leads are not doing anyone any favors. Slogging through these leads causes BDC reps and salespeople to get fatigued and unmotivated. Even worse, it slows the response time to real leads – the leads with true sales-intent and the diamonds in the rough. According to a study conducted by Foureyes in 2022 by industry leaders, including David Kain of Kain Automotive, “Across the industry from December 2020 to November 2021, 41.2% of leads were ‘mishandled,’ meaning calls were missed, follow-up was delayed, or lead inquiries weren’t logged to the CRM.”

Not a Level Playing Field

One of the ways that the third-party lead aggregators monetize their traffic is by suggesting vehicles that the visitor might be interested in based on their current and prior searches. This occurs while the in-market shopper is on their site, in addition to when these visitors are remarketed to, including ads and emails which display OTHER dealers’ inventory. This means that even if the in-market shopper found their way through all the other VDPs on the third-party site and landed on your VDP (for which dealers pay handsomely), they could still be lured away by another dealer willing to pay higher monthly fees. Even if your photos and your pricing are competitive or better, you could still lose the buyer. The third-party sites also infuse Tier-2 and Tier-1 new car offers into the search results pages, such as the example shown below for a search of a 2021 to 2023 Ford Explorer ST within 100 miles of Boston.

Lead Aggregator 2

The solution is to intercept more in-market buyers faster and for less overall cost! That’s a winning strategy, and Jazel makes it happen with sales-focused marketing and advertising strategies for dealers who want to stand out and out-compete. This includes driving buyers to customer-centric dealer websites which make it easy for shoppers to find what they are looking for, engage with your inventory, and convert into buyers.