The automotive retail space is moving fast, and it leaves dealers with a constant conundrum: how do we balance the escalating costs of operations while ordering in-demand and profitable vehicles?  


Some may admit to using intuition and best guesswork and, as impressive as that is, it’s a risky approach considering trends change rapidly and consumer behaviour is becoming more complex. In fact, making decisions that aren’t based on data can have profound implications on a dealership’s financial status.  


In today’s digital world, dealerships have access to a wide range of data points. A word of warning though: not all brands provide reliable data, and not all data is worth looking at. 


Here are three crucial areas where you should have data-driven insights for and how they can maximise profitability in your dealership.  


1. Ordering vehicles that sell 

JATO Sales Link analyses millions of consumer transactions and provides vast volumes of data based on previous sales, which is a more precise way to see where buyers are spending their money and what truly drives their purchasing decisions. 


With this data-driven tool, you can see the most profitable vehicles in your market, going beyond brands and models, to trims and individual option uptake, such as heated seats, parking assist, paintwork colour and more.  


For example, Sales Link data for 2023 (analysing over 10,000 BMW transactions) reveals that the BMW 1 Series is within the top 25 of the most purchased vehicles across the UK. If we look at trims specifically, the M Sport is in the top 10. 


By digging down further, the tool shows the most desirable version was the 1.5l petrol with an automatic transmission and 5 doors.  



Some of the most sought-after additional options and packs on this vehicle includes metallic paintwork (the Skyscraper Grey metallic was the most popular out of the costed paints), sun protection glass, M Sport Pro Pack and more.





Having this data at hand across all your dealership sites helps guide you on important decisions when ordering vehicles and allows you to spec vehicles with the most desirable features. That way, you can avoid overstocking on models or trims that are becoming less popular or outdated.


2. Optimising your pricing strategy:

Implementing dynamic pricing strategies, informed by up-to-date and timely data helps you to adjust prices based on market demand, competitive pricing, and other influencing factors.


It is crucial to have data on the final sales price, along with what discounts are being applied. Without these insights, pricing is based on guesswork which makes it difficult to remain competitive.



Explore the data even further to gain further insight. For example, a closer look at discounts can show how the discounts you’re applying for the BMW 1 Series M Sport compared to the market. Even just a few hundred pounds difference between the discounts you and another dealer offer can profoundly impact sales rate.

If you’re discounting too much, it may indicate that you’re damaging your profit margin but if you’re not discounting enough, you risk losing potential buyers to competitors. Having comprehensive data that’s easily accessible will help you find that sweet spot.




3. Learn from your other dealership sites

It can be easy to focus on profitability within the four walls of your dealership, but the success of each of your individual dealership sites contributes to the growth and success of your entire brand. It’s also vital for avoiding silos and encouraging a culture of cross-dealership learning to enhance operational efficiency and profitability.


Additionally, if you choose to share your data, JATO Sales Link also includes a breakdown of performance across options, discounts and final sales price across the market so that you can easily compare performance per site and even against anonymised competitors.





What else can you do to maximise profitability besides data?

Beyond structured data, one of the most valuable things you can do to enhance profitability is to collaborate with OEMs for strategic planning. Gain insights into upcoming models, production schedules, and market forecasts to position your dealership ahead of the curve.


By fostering a collaborative relationship with OEMs, you not only stay informed about industry trends but also gain a competitive edge in anticipating and meeting consumer demands. This strategic foresight allows you to optimise inventory, tailor marketing efforts, and align your dealership’s offerings with the evolving preferences of your target market.


Why JATO Sales Link?

The key to strengthening dealership profitability lies in reliable data and insightful decision-making. It’s not a radical shift but it is underused.


The data you acquire needs to be rooted in buyer-behaviour and should provide you with information about the top selling vehicles with the most popular specs, as well as pricing insights, such as the final price of the vehicle sold, and the discounts applied.


JATO Sales Link is equipped with all this and more. At the time of this post, we’re offering a free account in the following markets: Great Britain, Germany, France, Spain, and Italy. Learn more here.