shopping research en-US 7 Websites You Must Visit When Buying a New Car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-websites-you-must-visit-when-buying-a-new-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="" alt="car" title="car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Buying a new car is a pretty stressful experience. You&rsquo;re putting down a pretty large chunk of cash, and you&rsquo;re making a commitment to allocate part of your monthly budget to a new expense you didn&rsquo;t have before. (See also: <a href="" target="_blank">17 Things Car Salesmen Don&rsquo;t Want You to Know</a>)</p> <p>Which isn&rsquo;t too bad...except the part where you actually go buy the car and you feel like you&rsquo;re getting taken advantage of by <a href=";v=4bZeGM-Q1rs" target="_blank">ruthless, experienced salesmen</a> who want to take as much of your money as they can.</p> <p>Which is where the Internet comes in.</p> <p>Thanks to the world wide web, you don&rsquo;t have to go through this all on your own. There are millions of <a href="" target="_blank">people out there sharing their experiences</a> on the best way to deal with car salesmen and how to get the best deal possible.</p> <p>So let&rsquo;s take a look at the best sites out there to help get you on your way.</p> <h2>1.</h2> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Edmunds is a great place</a> if you want to read tips and advice on which car is a good match for you. Their reviews and feature stories provide lots of information on both new and used cars.</p> <h2>2. Kelley Blue Book (</h2> <p>Kelley Blue Book is similar to Edmunds in that they have some good reviews and information, but <a href="" target="_blank">KBB's real strength is pricing information</a>. Want to know how much your old car is worth as a trade in? How much should you pay for the new car you&rsquo;re looking at? Kelley Blue Book is an agreed-upon standard in the car business, so you need to be in-the-know on what the Blue Book value is for any car you&rsquo;re thinking of buying or selling.</p> <h2>3.</h2> <p>It&rsquo;s great to have the Blue Book value, but you want to get as many different quotes from different sources as you can to find out what you should be paying for your new car. <a href="" target="_blank">Truecar</a> is great because they&rsquo;ll show you a continuum of the different prices for a specific car (MSRP, Invoice, Average Paid), so you can see what the <a href="" target="_blank">car is being actively sold for</a>.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s really eye opening to see how the <a href="" target="_blank">MSRP is really just for show</a>. You should never even come close to paying that much for a new car.</p> <h2>4.</h2> <p>I've used <a href="" target="_blank">Autotrader</a> as a secondary source of information. After visiting the sites listed above, this was just to make sure that my data was good and I hadn&rsquo;t missed anything. They also have a useful tool that&rsquo;ll show you any and all dealers near you, so you can start reaching out to them to get the best price on your new car.</p> <h2>5.</h2> <p><a href="">Carmax</a> doesn't really sell new cars, but I just used their site to price out a trade in. The website is another place you can get a quote for the value of your car. What you want to do, however, is go to an actual Carmax location and get a full-blown quote. They&rsquo;ll guarantee it for seven days, and you can take that to your dealer to use as leverage so they give you the full value of your trade-in. If they don&rsquo;t, simply go back to Carmax and deal with them.</p> <h2>6.</h2> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Nada Guides</a> is similar to Truecar in that you&rsquo;ll get a much better idea of what you should be paying for the specific car you&rsquo;re looking at buying. This database is what car dealers use to value trade-ins, so if you&rsquo;re armed with this information you&rsquo;ll be one step ahead of the game.</p> <h2>7. Enthusiast Forums</h2> <p>I wish I could give you a link to the specific forum for the car you&rsquo;re interested in buying, but that list would be too long. Spend a little time searching for information on the car you want, and eventually the same forum will start showing up again and again. That's the one you visit.</p> <p>That&rsquo;s what happened to me as I researched my Subaru Outback. I discovered a TON of really helpful people over on <a href="" target="_blank"></a> and <a href="" target="_blank"></a> (run by an actual Subaru dealer). There&rsquo;s nothing like talking to people who have bought the exact same car you want to buy. They&rsquo;re eager to share their stories and experiences about living with the car &mdash; and buying it.</p> <p>The Internet is a great ally when you're out there trying to get a good deal on a new car. These sites were crucial in my <a href="" target="_blank">recent car-buying experience</a>.</p> <p><em>What Internet resources have you used to help you through the car buying process?</em></p> <a href="" class="sharethis-link" title="7 Websites You Must Visit When Buying a New Car" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="">Carlos Portocarrero</a> and published on <a href="">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href=""> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Cars and Transportation Shopping buy a new car car research shopping research used cars Tue, 07 May 2013 09:30:21 +0000 Carlos Portocarrero 973716 at Buy This Product, Friend: The Hidden Power of Testimonials <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/buy-this-product-friend-the-hidden-power-of-testimonials" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="" alt="thumbs up" title="thumbs up" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="164" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When we make purchasing decisions, we like knowing that we&rsquo;re doing the right thing. Every day there are more options out there, whether we&rsquo;re talking about groceries or automobiles. Testimonials are one of the easiest ways for sellers to reassure buyers that a particular product is the right choice. After all, if someone else is willing to tell you that she&rsquo;s truly pleased with her purchase, you can expect that you&rsquo;ll be pretty happy, too. And therein lies the problem. How do we know we can trust the testimonial? (See also: <a href="">Advertising Jargon That Aims to Mislead</a>)</p> <h2>Interpreting Testimonials</h2> <p>As you&rsquo;re reviewing testimonials available for a given product or service, you want to make sure that you're seeing a reliable recommendation. You want what's called &quot;social proof&quot; &mdash; a recommendation that can be linked back to a real, identifiable person. Marketers consider video testimonials and other indisputable recommendations to be the most effective, and for good reason.</p> <p><strong>But Is It Trustworthy?</strong></p> <p>Even if you're looking at written testimonials, there are a couple of characteristics worth considering. If the seller has posted a text testimonial with just a first name (or maybe even no name), we&rsquo;re tempted to trust the testimonial as honest or reliable. But if someone doesn&rsquo;t want their name to run with their testimonial, maybe there&rsquo;s something else going on. It&rsquo;s good to see a full name at the least. Even better is a link back to a review, social media account, or website.</p> <p><strong>Strength in Numbers</strong></p> <p>You also want to see more than one testimonial.</p> <p>If a business has been operating for awhile, there should be plenty of examples of how well they can do, just as there may be multiple reviews of the business on Yelp and its counterparts.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s a little concerning if the <a href="">testimonials all sound the same</a>, by the way. It&rsquo;s not necessarily an indicator that the seller didn&rsquo;t get the testimonials from a wide variety of buyers, but it can mean that the seller gave suggestions on what to write or asked submitters to follow a certain format &mdash; which is less helpful for shoppers deciding which product or service to buy.</p> <h2>Understanding the Appeal of Testimonials</h2> <p>When you're purchasing, it's important to understand the impact a testimonial can have on you &mdash; on a basic level, we're programmed to trust other people's opinions. A <a href="" target="_blank">survey conducted by Nielsen in 2009</a> found that 90% of consumers will trust recommendations from people they know. Seventy percent will trust opinions posted online, which can include reviews and testimonials.</p> <p>Most of us are more willing to make a purchase when we see a testimonial. It's not the only factor, but it's one that we need to be aware of in order to make an accurately informed decision.</p> <a href="" class="sharethis-link" title="Buy This Product, Friend: The Hidden Power of Testimonials" rel="nofollow">ShareThis</a><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">Written by <a href="">Thursday Bram</a> and published on <a href="">Wise Bread</a>. Read more <a href=""> articles from Wise Bread</a>.</div></div> Consumer Affairs Shopping advertising shopping research testimonials Wed, 21 Nov 2012 10:36:32 +0000 Thursday Bram 955504 at