I noticed in the past few days that the SIMI have published a beta version of their new used car website at www.beepbeep.ie. The tagline reads 'The Used Car Website You Can Trust' and the overall message throughout the site is one of 'Quality Assured Used Cars' only.
The number of websites offering sellers (private and dealer) advertising services is growing continually. Only last week BuyAndSell.ie launched a new cars portal, and sites like donedeal.ie and gumtree.ie are chock full of advertisements, and the classified ads segment seems to be expanding daily with new entrants like BenDunne.com ready to slash prices to grab market share. So will beepbeep.ie be able to survive in such a competitive space?
Industry frustrated with 'rogue sellers'
Reading through the site I found this quotation from the warranty information page interesting:
Here's the plain text extract of (my) highlighted text in that image:
As an industry, we have become increasingly frustrated (as we know you have) with the lack of a quality assured used car website for Ireland[...] No more wondering what consumer protection you have as you pick your way though the private and rogue sellers that can appear on other sites.
I'm not sure that it's fair to put private sellers in the same bracket as 'rogue sellers'. Granted, when looking for a used car you have very little protection under the law when buying privately but that's not to say (if you follow certain guidelines) you can't pick up a great car at a great price.
Increasingly Sophisticated Buyers Armed with Sophisticated Tools
Buyers are much more experienced these days with a growing number insisting on a full Motorcheck report before committing to a purchase. The number of people taking advantage of our full technical inspection continues to grow, and our experience tells us the vast majority of private sellers are completely legitimate.
While it's great to see the industry doing more to protect the consumer I can't help but wonder will the new site have what it takes to make an impact with Irish buyers?