AutoTrader.com is widening the distribution of its used car classified listings, and presumably their value to potential advertisers, through a multi-year exclusive deal with Yahoo Autos.
The two companies announced the agreement Tuesday, but won't divulge detailed financial terms. AutoTrader.com CEO Chip Perry would only say Yahoo will receive "a significant marketing fee" as part of the deal.
The relationship will result in AutoTrader.com's 2.5 million dealer and private owner listings supplanting Yahoo Autos' existing used car classifieds. Previously, Yahoo carried feeds from a number of carmakers' certified used car programs, including those of Audi, General Motors, Toyota and Lexus. Yahoo will continue to sell classified ads to individuals, but not dealers. Those listings will be mixed with the AutoTrader.com ads. AutoTrader.com counts 40,000 car dealers and 250,000 private owners among its advertisers.
"We wanted to help our sellers -- dealers and private owner sellers -- to get linked into Yahoo's audience, because so many people still start their shopping process through portals like Yahoo," said Perry.
AutoTrader.com's branding will appear on every page of Yahoo Autos, which is linked from the portal's home page. Perry says Yahoo will also promote AutoTrader.com on other sites within its network. The listings themselves have been integrated into Yahoo's site functionality, enabling users to save ads, save searches, and instant message others via Yahoo Messenger. Yahoo relaunched its Autos site last March after adding personalization, collaboration and comparison features.
The used car classifieds company also distributes its listings via America Online, Edmunds.com, Univision.com (in Spanish), and on Internet Broadcasting Systems' television station sites across the U.S. The AutoTrader.com site itself gets about 8 million unique monthly visitors, according to the company. These users perform about 60 million searches per month, with the average person viewing 15 vehicles during the shopping process.
AutoTrader.com is a majority-owned division of Manheim, which in turn is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises.
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Pamela Parker is a former managing editor of ClickZ News, Features, and Experts. She's been covering interactive advertising and marketing since the boom days of 1999, chronicling the dot-com crash and the subsequent rise of the medium. Before working at ClickZ, Parker was associate editor at @NY, a pioneering Web site and e-mail newsletter covering New York new media start-ups. Parker received a master's degree in journalism, with a concentration in new media, from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.
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