Dealertrack brings digital retailing tools to 10 FFUN Group dealerships


The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan-based FFUN Group has equipped 10 of its franchise dealerships with Dealertrack digital retailing tools.

Dealertrack Canada announced Wednesday that FFUN Group customers can now take advantage of Dealertrack digital retailing online shopping tools both online and in-store.

“Other competing solutions open in a new window and take the consumer off our dealer’s website and into their own experience, where our dealer ultimately loses visibility of that customer,” FFUN Group vice president operations Rob Weber said in a news release. “With Dealertrack Digital Retailing, our clients receive a seamless, efficient and convenient purchasing experience.”

Dealertrack digital retailing tools can help dealers understand their ROI by following a customer from an online advertisement or organic search all the way to the final sale in the Dealertrack portal, using cross-domain tracking with Google Analytics, according to Dealertrack.

“Additionally, Dealertrack Digital Retailing keeps consumers on the vehicle display page on the dealer’s website, increasing the users’ time on both site and engagement,” Dealertrack said.

Furthermore, the FFUN Group’s recent move to employ Dealertrack digital retailing tools stems from the group’s customer-centric approach to business, according to Dealertrack.

“Dealertrack’s breadth of services and access to data, supported by Cox Automotive Canada, makes us uniquely positioned to provide dealers like the FFUN Group with both services and insights,” said Richard Evans, vice president and general manager at Dealertrack Canada.

“FFUN Group customers also benefit from Dealertrack Digital Retailing connecting directly to the Dealertrack Portal, which is the lending portal in most OEM digital retailing experiences in Canada today,” Evans said.

The 10 FFUN Group dealerships now using Dealertrack digital retailing tools includes the following list of locations :

  • West Edmonton Hyundai
  • Acura of Saskatoon
  • Country Ford
  • Saskatoon North Hyundai
  • Saskatoon South Hyundai
  • KIA of Saskatoon
  • KIA of Prince Albert
  • Volkswagen Centre of Saskatoon
  • South 20 Dodge Chrysler
  • Nipawin Chrysler Dodge

The FFUN Group currently represents brands Acura, Dodge, Chrysler, Hyundai, Ford and Kia.

Contact At Once enhances platform with CARPROOF vehicle history reports


In an effort to help enhance consumers’ shopping experiences, CARPROOF vehicle history reports have been integrated into Contact At Once’s conversational commerce automotive platform.

The new integration gives agents the ability to share CARPROOF information and content with consumers from within the Connect platform, the companies announced Thursday.

CAO’s Connect platform allows consumers to message with sales or service agents from media sources including online advertising, social sites and dealership or OEM websites.

“Shoppers want to have all the information about a vehicle in hand as they’re considering options,” Contact At Once general manager Denise Chudy said in a news release. “Being able to chat or text and get a CARPROOF report while the messaging conversation is happening puts valuable information at the consumer's fingertips and can significantly improve the on-site experience.”

Dealership agents can now share information from CARPROOF and CARFAX via either the Connect platform’s chat or text conversation window, according to the news release.

“Our goal is to help Canadian shoppers make the most informed decisions about the used vehicles they're interested in so they feel empowered when they are ready to purchase,” said CARPROOF vice president of automotive sales Shawn Vording. “Contact At Once gives our customers the option to have a live conversation with someone who can help them decipher used-car data and reduce the guesswork around buying a car.”

Equifax Canada and FICO extend partnership


Two well-known names in the financial services arena in Canada will continue to collaborate.

Equifax Canada recently announced that it has extended a long-standing partnership with FICO to distribute FICO scores to lenders and other businesses in Canada.

Building on a partnership of nearly 30 years, the companies highlighted that the agreement renews a commitment that the two firms will continue working together to develop new innovative analytic solutions for the Canadian market.

As part of this renewed agreement, credit scores which have been previously distributed under the brand name BEACON, will now be delivered under the FICO brand name as FICO scores based on Equifax data. FICO Score 8 based on Equifax Data, which was previously called BEACON 9.0, will continue to leverage Equifax mortgage data. It will also continue to provide substantial improvement in predictive power compared to prior scores.

“Our continued relationship with FICO underscores Equifax Canada’s dedication to delivering innovative insights to the Canadian market,” said Lisa Nelson, president of Equifax Canada.

“The FICO score has served Canadian customers well, and continuing to offer it as part of our product suite ensures we are providing a comprehensive selection of scores that empower our customers to make better business decisions,” Nelson continued.

Kevin Deveau, vice president and managing director for FICO Canada, added, “The extension of this agreement ensures that the Canadian market will continue to benefit from one of the most predictive, trusted credit scoring tools for risk management.

“The FICO score is a critical part of the lending process in Canada,” Deveau went on to say.

Earlier this year, FICO released findings from a global study that uncovered seven trends about Canadians and auto financing. A pair of FICO experts elaborated about the findings in the episode of the AuSM Podcast that’s available at the end of this report.


Canadian Black Book data now fuels Momentuum’s FileAssure

BURLINGTON, Ontario - 

On Wednesday, Momentuum BPO highlighted that the company strengthened its FileAssure solution through a partnership with Canadian Black Book.

Officials explained that trustees using FileAssure across Canada will gain access to client vehicle values via Canadian Black Book’s data set.

“We are always listening to the needs of the insolvency industry and looking for ways to enhance their experience through our technology, because we fully understand how valuable time is for a trustee,” Momentuum president Matt Yeatman said.

“A vehicle’s value is a key piece of the client’s financial situation, and we wanted to digitize this step to acquire accurate values and integrate them into our platform easily,” Yeatman continued.

The addition of Canadian Black Book values to FileAssure will enable instant access this valuation data much earlier in the process during the client intake step. The data will populate directly into the client record, after merely inputting the vehicle VIN or the vehicle year, make, model and trim level. 

More specifics, such as vehicle mileage or equipment and options can be input to fine-tune value accuracy.

“Canadian Black Book has worked closely with the financial industry, since our inception over 55 years ago,” Canadian Black Book president Brad Rome said. “Today we continue to grow this core competency with this new relationship with Momentuum, illustrating our commitment to working with top innovators to help put our data into the hands of Canada’s financial restructuring experts.”

FileAssure leverages data partnerships from a variety of reliable sources. The company insisted this process can ensure that trustees have the best information during client onboarding, as well as providing that information when it is needed to streamline workflow.

At its core, the system can capture prospects, gather and manage pertinent financial data, communicate and schedule meetings with clients, provide proven digital record management and more.

“We have successfully digitized documents in the industry, and now we’ve achieved our goal to systematically program the intake process and provide the Canadian financial restructuring industry with timely, relevant and accurate data as early in the cycle as possible,” Yeatman said.

“Our partnership with Canadian Black Book is another example of how by uniting and integrating trusted sources of data FileAssure helps further automate administration for the industry,” he went on to say.

TRADER announces revamped 'Canadian-centric' dealer website solution will launch next year


TRADER's strategic investment in Vancouver-based Convertus earlier this year has allowed the company to begin working on a new TAdvantage digital solution for Canadian dealers that will launch nationwide in February.

The company announced Wednesday that as part of its comprehensive digital solutions strategy, its TAdvantage dealer website solution will see a major upgrade on the heels the company’s recent partnership with Convertus — a Canadian provider of premium web solutions and digital marketing services for automotive dealerships — earlier this year.

To enhance digital marketing capabilities for dealers, the company said that TAdvantage will be closely integrated with the new digital advertising platform, TRFFK, that TRADER first introduced to dealers late last year.

“We listened to back from customers nationwide about the challenges they have experienced with our third-party website platform,” TRADER president and chief executive officer Sebastian Baldwin said in a news release. “As part of our commitment to offer the most innovative, best-in-class products and solutions, we have joined forces with Convertus to help build our next generation, Canada-first dealer website solution.”

TRADER said that it aims to bring dealers a comprehensive solution that optimizes the entire consumer journey with premium technology and service for Canadians.

“The new and improved TAdvantage … will allow TRADER to bring innovation in-house and be adaptive to what its sales and product teams see firsthand as current and future needs specific to Canadian dealers,” the company said.

According to the company, three key features that dealers can expect from TAdvantage include:

  • Performance reporting that gives a holistic view of all performance
  • Local presence in every province with native French-speaking support
  • Advanced integration with digital campaigns

Meanwhile, in wait of the revamped TAdvantage’s February launch, TRADER said that it will carry on representing exclusively in Canada, and all dealer websites will be fully supported.

“At launch, existing website customers will retain all core site functionality and features and will benefit from a painless transition from the old platform to the new, improved TAdvantage,” the company said.

CarGurus expands Canadian market presence through new AMVOQ partnership


CarGurus has confirmed a new partnership with one of Quebec's largest used-car dealer organizations to provide access to its customer acquisition channel for third-party listings.

The company recently announced that more than 1,300 members of The Used Car Dealers Association of Quebec, known as AMVOQ (Association des Marchands de Vehicules D'occasion du Quebec), can now activate their inventory and interact with the popular online marketplace’s consumer audience.

Via the technology and data analytics leveraged by the company, CarGururs said AMVOQ members can increase their lead volume utilizing connections made with the platform’s visitors.

“Dealers rely on CarGurus as a technology-driven resource to connect with highly qualified, ready-to-buy car shoppers,” CarGurus vice president of international business development Diego Sanson said in a news release. “By forming this relationship with AMVOQ, we hope to reach and educate more dealers on the advantages of CarGurus’ market-leading technology and ultimately, help them sell more cars.”

Along with the digital products created to help dealers reach more consumers, CarGurus delivers a car shopping process designed to help shoppers easily search local listings and connect with dealers.

“AMVOQ is particularly proud of this collaboration with CarGurus. This arrangement will allow our members to have privileged access to an online advertising platform that is becoming increasingly important in our market,” said Steeve De Marchi, executive director at AMVOQ. “Our partnership with CarGurus is part of a data enhancement strategy to allow AMVOQ members to have an increased digital presence and improve their competitiveness.”

As a component of the partnership, CarGurus explained that it will also help the organization educate its members about the value of following a digital marketing strategy focused on advanced technology.

Additionally, AMVOQ dealers will have access to CarGurus representatives at the AMVOQ Annual Conference, according to the company.

New RSR Digital division launches dealer site shopping tool powered by PERQ

BURLINGTON, Ontario - 

RSR Digital, a sister company to RSR Global, has a new business division named Online Guided Intelligence (OGI) that has introduced a new online guided shopping solution powered by software provider PERQ.

The company announced  this month that the mission of the OGI division is to provide Canadian automotive dealers with online technology solutions. 

Early this summer, RSR Digital said, it will introduce a second dealer technology offering that can locate car shoppers in real-time, and more information will be announced in a few months.

RSR Digital said that it spent two years sourcing vendors in conjunction with leveraging its network of more than 1,700 dealer partners to create new online marketing, research and buying solutions.

“We’ve been listening to dealers over the past number of years and understand their pain points in their endeavor to market online,” RSR Digital president and chief executive officer Karey Davidson explained in a news release. “What’s equally important is that we are keenly aware of consumer trends.  We sourced the best of the best tech partners to supply solutions that car buyers want to use and that they can trust, which will ultimately help generate more sales for our clients.”

The new tool for guided shopping is a connected suite of solutions designed to be added to an existing dealer website so that online visitors can use it to research and shop vehicles, according to RSR Digital.

The company said that the launch of its new online guided shopping solution serves the new OGI division’s mission to offer platforms that can build consumers' trust for dealers.

“This solution is built with the customer in mind first, and the dealer lead second, in order to foster trust and loyalty,” said Jenny Vance, PERQ executive vice president of sales. “We do not put lead traps in front of them. By doing so, consumers do more and share more, which helps dealers win business.”

The shopping solution can create a tailored shopping experience by providing car shoppers helpful and easy to use tools that are intuitive and designed to keep traffic on dealer sites longer.

RSR Digital said that a recent test pilot of the new shopping solution with Harris Mazda in Nanaimo, British Columbia showed impressive results.

“Other dealers are intrigued.  We get calls from dealers all across Canada wanting to know how we’re doing what we do,” Harris Mazda general manager Doug Culham said. “It’s all about being flexible, he adds, because car shoppers are put off when the sales process doesn’t go the way they want.”

Cox Automotive Canada now offers advertising solution

MISSISSAUGA, Ontario -'s advertising solution is now available through Cox Automotive Canada.

The company announced earlier this week that Cox Automotive Canada can launch the full capability of the integrated platform across the Canadian market.

Through the digital advertising solution, dealers can track and monitor ROI in real-time to automatically connect their vehicles with the most likely buyers.

“We are very excited to offer our Advertising solution to Canadian dealers through Cox Automotive Canada,” company president Maria Soklis said in a news release. “Localizing our product offering will allow us to continue to enhance the product in a way that best makes sense for our clients.”

In addition to on-demand reporting, the platform is designed to provide dealers with aligned campaigns that include the expanded text ads, mobile call extensions, and price extensions for paid search as well as Facebook.’s full suite of digital marketing offerings leverages Cox Automotive data which touches 75-percent of all vehicle transactions in North America, according to the company.

Search Optics announces plans to deliver digital marketing across Hyundai Auto Canada dealerships nationwide


Search Optics will implement a fully-integrated digital marketing strategy across all of Hyundai’s dealerships within the Canadian market.

The company announced Tuesday that it has newly partnered with Hyundai Auto Canada Corp. and Innocean Worldwide Canada to provide a single-source digital marketing solution that can deliver brand consistency across corporate, Dealer Advertising Associations (DAA) and dealership communications.

This partnership follows a recent and successful collaboration between three companies to launch a high-impact digital marketing program in the Brazilian market.

“It’s a privilege and honor to partner with Innocean and Hyundai Auto Canada to achieve a level of digital marketing integration that the automotive industry has never seen before,” Search Optics chief executive officer David Ponn said in a news release. “Through transparency, trust and shared audience insights, we’re breaking down the barriers that traditionally prevent OEMs from engaging with their dealers to build effective brand consistency in the market.”

Search Optics said that this is the first time, Hyundai Auto Canada dealership marketing efforts will be fully aligned with brand and DAA initiatives.

“We’re excited to leverage Search Optics’ proven track record to implement a program that strategically supports our business goals,” explained Lawrence Hamilton, director of marketing at Hyundai Auto Canada. “This synergistic effort impacts all of our dealers across the country in terms of revenue and marketing ROI, and has already generated impressive results.”

Hyundai dealerships first launched Search Optics’ digital marketing program during a three-month pilot program last year.

In addition to a 69-percent increase in website conversions and an 87-percent jump in appointment requests, Search Optics said a major dealership group achieved a 50-percent boost in web traffic, as well as a 14-percent sales increase.

Currently, an Australian market pilot program, similar to the Canadian one, is in the planning phase.

“We’re proud to engage in this innovative, results-driven partnership with Search Optics and Hyundai Auto Canada,” added Caroline Canlas, senior director at Biddable Media, Innocean Worldwide Canada. “By uniting all Canadian Hyundai dealerships under the same integrated digital marketing strategy as Corporate and DAA, we’ll be able to amplify our marketing messages, increase the value of our digital media investments, and share powerful audience data insights to better understand the customer journey.”

Convertus partners with TRADER Corp.


One of the many expert speakers who shared valuable information to dealers and other attendees during this year’s AuSM Canada Conference made a major announcement on Wednesday.

According to a letter posted on the company’s website, Convertus co-founder and managing partner Kevin Gordon announced that the company has officially partnered with the TRADER Corp. “with the aim of creating the ultimate digital solutions within the Canadian automotive industry.”

Gordon indicated that Convertus will operate as a separate entity from TRADER, but will now have access to capital that will enable the company to innovate and grow at a faster rate than ever before.

“In less than five years, Convertus has grown from a lean start-up of two young (and devilishly handsome) co-founders operating out of a single bedroom in a downtown Vancouver apartment, to a team of over 65 strong,” Gordon wrote . “We stayed the course and defied the odds, becoming one of the fastest-growing and most disruptive companies in the industry.

"Both Nicholas (Williams) and myself will be staying with the company as managing partners, continuing to steer the ship from our Vancouver office alongside our amazing team,” Gordon continued. “We will continue to offer premium digital solutions and industry-leading support, as we have since our humble beginnings. All of the key elements which have led dealers to work with Convertus (and which made our company awesome in general) will remain intact.”

Gordon reflected back on why he and Williams started Convertus.

“We first created this company with a single goal in mind: to build best-in-class marketing and technology offerings, helping move the Canadian automotive industry forward in the process,” Gordon said. “Our vision was clear, our efforts relentless, and in many ways, we feel that we have been successful in accomplishing our objective.

“Continuing on with our rocket ship-momentum, Convertus is now entering a new chapter, with an incredible opportunity to further impact our industry in ways that would have been otherwise impossible,” he continued. “The combination of Convertus and Trader will benefit the client bases of both companies, in addition to the vast-majority of car shoppers across the country.

Gordon closed his update by giving a special mention to the firms that have helped Convertus grow.

“On behalf of the entire team at Convertus, it is with the most genuine sincerity and humble gratitude that we want to thank you, our loyal clients, for placing your trust in us,” Gordon wrote. “Everything we have been able to accomplish is a result of your believing in us, and your willingness to take a chance on Convertus, and for that, we are eternally grateful.

“Let’s continue to change the game together. The best is yet to come,” he concluded.