Learn more about eDealer.ca
In early 2002, Chris Whitehead (President and Founder, e-Dealer) was operating an independent car dealership in northern Ontario. Removed from his cities traditional “gasoline alley”, he had to find innovative ways to generate higher lead volumes to increase sales. In 2003, Chris realized the opportunity in online automotive marketing with the launch of his new website: www.carloanscanada.com
As Car Loans Canada quickly grew through a solid foundation of search engine optimization, coupled with search engine marketing – the business developed its first problem:
How do you manage automotive internet leads?
After weeks of research, Chris could not find a solution that fit the needs of the Canadian Car Dealer. The solution: Just like many of the entrepreneur’s of the late 90′s and early 00′s, if a product doesn’t exist – Build one. With intimate knowledge of the automotive industry, and the needs of the Canadian Dealer in mind, Chris began development on the product know as Smart Dealer. This new program would automatically receive all of your online marketing leads and sort them based on each campaign creating the ability to easily measure Cost Per Lead and Return on Investment.
Success has its challenges
As the success of Car Loans Canada began to spread across Canada, it became overwhelming for a small independent car dealership in northern Ontario. At this point, the opportunity shifted from success in dealership sales, to success as a pioneer in online automotive marketing. Chris sold his dealership in northern Ontario to become an online lead provider and automotive digital marketing consultant with e-Dealer.ca.
eDealer.ca: The beginning
e-Dealer began with modest roots in a home office in northern Ontario, with an ambitious goal of becoming the premier internet lead management and automotive marketing consulting firm in Canada. It didn’t take long for progressive dealers across Canada to give online marketing and lead generation a shot. In three short months, e-Dealer was working with dealerships from coast to coast, providing leads and online marketing consultation. As the e-Dealer brand grew, so did the customer requests.
The Foundation of Success: Dealer Feedback
Dealer feedback is one of the most important components in e-Dealer’s success. As e-Dealer continued to grow, dealerships became more interested in having their own lead generation websites. So we started to build sub-prime websites for dealers across Canada. Eventually, in late 2004, the most notable of all requests was received:
How can my dealership post up
to date inventory online?
The answer became Smart Inventory. e-Dealer developed a web application to integrate the lead management system, Inventory Manager, and dealership website. e-Dealer has leveraged this early adoption in perfecting new techniques with consistent technological advances in integration, SEO, SEM, and syndication.
Knowledge comes with experience: Growth Stages
Over the next few years, e-Dealer continued to develop and test new products using pilot programs in dealerships across Canada. Some ideas were revolutionary to the online automotive marketing industry, and some just weren’t. With the knowledge gained from all of the triumphs and failures, e-Dealer is built on the foundation laid by Auto Dealers across Canada. Lead by Chris’ enthusiasm and determination, e-Dealer has grown exponentially every year since its humble beginnings as a home office in northern Ontario.
The e-Dealer of Today…and Tomorrow
Now based in Toronto, Ontario, e-Dealer has grown to over 50 employees working with thousands of car dealerships across Canada. Our mission is to lead the online automotive marketing industry through innovation in technology and digital marketing consulting – yielding the top results for our partners across Canada. With our new second generation web based application “PowerUp” to hit the market soon, keep an eye out for the next digital marketing evolution.