Thursday, June 9, 2011

Feedback from Groupon in Powersports has been mostly negative

So I was right, so far all the emails I got back from dealers tell me that = Groupon is bad for the Scooter Dealer.

I wrote a blog piece last month on this and several dealers have emailed to tell me I was 110% correct about this. 

What works for selling nice hot massages in some upscale part of town or Tattoo removal maybe even a Brazilian all you can eat beef isn't going to work for a motor vehicle. Only someone stuck with a few thousand units would think it's a positive thing for a motorcycle dealer to liquidate inventory at a discount and give the very poor people at Groupon in Chicago $300 bucks to help a dealer move a few units. Here's an idea give the consumer $300 in accessories and don't pay Groupon so much money! 

These days that's what we have the NDA auctions for since they are closed to the general public and we don't devalue the vehicles out in the open. We have sufficient incompetence from Chinese importers to do that for us we don't need Groupon putting downward pressure on the mom and pop stores.
Dealers have to contend with Ebay, online competition, wholesale distributors who like to sell parts direct plus all the new people who work out of their garage at home and every China supplier selling online. So Groupon is just one more thing you can add to the enemy of stores list. I was right, to those who emailed us thank you. 

A veteran writer for the leading Dealer News magazine wrote me to tell me he doesn't think it's a big deal. To quote him "its a consumer driven market so it doesn't matter if stores can compete or not, the trend is for all distributors to sell direct to the public and as long as they take it the distributors will continue to do it." That's from the guy who has to keep his mouth shut to get them to advertise. 

What's next all the major four brands selling on Shopatron or Cycle Trader? Next thing you know people without stores will buy a PSN site? Maybe Parts Unlimited could sell to the public as well you know like run Dennis Kirk or something. It's a good time to be a dealership, embracing Groupon is just another step into the industry downward magin trend or as I like to call it the Chinese discount syndrome.

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