Company: Dealer.com, Burlington, VT
Company Description: Dealer.com is the leader in automotive digital marketing solutions -serving automotive retailers, manufacturers and media companies worldwide. The company's innovative, award-winning digital marketing and advertising platform significantly lowers the cost of customer acquisition, enhancing dealers' efficiency and profitability.
Nomination Category: Company / Organization Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Fastest-Growing Company of the Year - Up to 2,500 Employees
Nomination Title: Dealer.com
Tell the story about what this nominated organization achieved since January 1 2011 (up to 500 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes. Begin this section with the following two lines: Year over year revenue growth (%): Year over year employee growth (%):
As the global leader in online marketing solutions for the automotive industry, Dealer.com delivered another year of substantial growth in 2011, as revenues reached $128 million – resulting in a 50 percent growth from 2010. In addition to its continued strong financial performance, Dealer.com extended its technology and service leadership with continued investment in research and development while expanding industry partnerships and receiving a variety of prestigious awards and accolades. The company also hired a total of 193 employees in 2011 to bring its headcount to 613 – an increase of 45 percent from 2010.
At a time when many technology companies are outsourcing work to other countries, Dealer.com strongly believes in the value of insourcing – one of the keys to the company’s exceptional customer service and responsiveness, a critical factor in the company’s success.
Earlier this year, Dealer.com was awarded U.S. Patent No. 8112279 for its audio file creation technology featured in its CarFlix HumanVoice product. The CarFlix solution allows dealers to easily create professional quality videos with voiceovers which feature a natural, authentic human voice. The technology seamlessly weaves together the product data, voice description and images to produce a high quality video that is then automatically matched to a dealer or retailer’s product listing on its website via a car’s VIN number.
In partnership with DriverSide and GfK Automotive, Dealer.com announced in the fall of 2011 the results of a study which showed information on social media networks – such as status updates, comments and “likes” – plays a significant and expanding role in helping car-buyers determine which brands, models and dealerships to consider, and which ones to drop, when shopping for a new vehicle. For example, the study found 38 percent of new vehicle shoppers said they used or will use social media to research their next vehicle purchase. This was one of the first studies to prove the impact social media has on the automotive purchase cycle and sparked discussion and excitement in the industry.
As more consumers turn to the Internet to conduct research and shop for vehicles online, dealers needed help not only with their websites, but also with inventory marketing, search engine optimization and search engine marketing. This year, Dealer.com developed several products designed to address these needs and to convert shoppers into buyers. The company maintains an edge over competitors by constantly monitoring for new trends and gauging needs of the industry – and provides clients with tools and strategies to build a network of loyal customers.
Despite the company’s incredible growth, Dealer.com has maintained a deep commitment to preserving and enhancing Vermont’s natural and economic resources. The company’s heaquarters, which completed a major expansion in June of 2011, is an LEED certified, environment-friendly building. In addition, Dealer.com continues to place tremendous value on creating a positive work environment for employees – being named by Outside magazine as one of the best places to work in America.
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Provide a brief (up to 100 words) biography about the leader of this nominated organization:
Mark Bonfigli, Founder and CEO of Dealer.com, has more than 20 years of marketing, retailing, wholesaling, and service experience in the auto industry. Bonfigli’s success has been widely recognized. Most recently he was a recipient of the 2009 Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award for the New England region, and he also received the 2009 Vermont Small Business Person of the Year Award. During tough times in the automotive industry, Dealer.com has continued to enjoy unprecedented growth and was recently named one of the fastest growing companies in Vermont.