Cox Automotive Tech Boom: Powering Breakthroughs with Artificial Intelligence
Cox Automotive is home to some of the world’s best and brightest innovators – data scientists, software engineers, product managers, and much more.
Cox Automotive is home to some of the world’s best and brightest innovators – data scientists, software engineers, product managers, and much more. Our leading-edge artificial intelligence (AI) advances reflect our ongoing investment in people, technology, and commitment to clients to drive innovation through integrated solutions.
For the uninitiated, AI may sound fantastical, like a futuristic, sci-fi odyssey. But AI actually refers to the ability of machines to perform tasks that would typically be associated with human cognition, such as responding to questions or describing objects or sifting through information to find the needle-in-a-haystack you’re looking for. Companies are using AI to identify trends and insights in vast reams of data and make faster, more profitable decisions in real-time. AI-driven products are aimed at reducing operating costs, improving decision-making, and enhancing customer service.
At Cox Automotive, AI is the engine of products that 1) understand customer behavior, 2) intelligently process human language, and 3) perform tasks on their own, without humans having to explain how to accomplish it all. It automates processes and tasks, creating efficiencies so our clients can better focus on the big picture.
So how does that work in the real world? Here’s how Cox Automotive brands are delivering AI innovation to our clients:
Manheim M LOGIC – Taking the Guesswork Out of Buying and Selling with AI
M LOGIC is a suite of decisioning solutions from Manheim, the world’s largest wholesale used-vehicle marketplace. Whether being used when transacting online, in-lane at auction, or on a dealer’s lot, M LOGIC solutions employ AI to automatically determine optimal business decisions in real time powered by data and predictive analytics.
Personalization. The technology evaluates a specific dealer’s historical buying and bidding patterns across a wide set of vehicle and market attributes and then scores available inventory against the dealer’s profile that span across all Manheim’s inventory channels. When generating personalized recommendations, Manheim’s algorithm accounts for dealer preferences across vehicle age, make, model, mileage, condition, seller segment and more, along with a variety of geographic and market factors. This AI-driven vehicle recommendation function learns on its own and improves over time.
Optimization. M LOGIC also includes an AI-powered optimization product suite for the vehicle remarketing industry. It provides prescriptive recommendations on how to price a car, where to send the car to sell, and which items to repair on the car – all optimized to generate the most profit. These recommendations are based on an ever-changing mountain of data specific to car makes/models, geographical locations, prices, comparisons to similar cars – the gamut. What’s more, this optimization can be applied to large inventories, vehicle fleets, long lists of VINs, with automated results delivered in seconds.
Although these optimization AI algorithms have consistently outperformed the old-fashioned way of doing business – that is, consigners knowing their markets, using guidebooks on wholesale prices, and acting based on personal know-how – it doesn’t do away with the human factor. Instead, the optimization suite complements clients’ deep experience, helping them to do their jobs better – and faster – than before. Additional profit per car adds up across volume for a big impact to their bottom lines.
Valuation. Using M LOGIC’s broad suite of data sources and analytics capabilities, Manheim is continuously refining the Manheim Market Report (MMR) to improve its accuracy and help wholesale clients transact on the right car at the right time. Widely regarded as the gold standard in wholesale vehicle valuations, MMR encompasses millions of vehicle transactions, along with OEM-build data, to value vehicles given their specific mileage, condition, exterior color, and region. This system is not static; it is constantly updating and adapting on new data contexts. This AI function can execute on a large scale, meaning it delivers precise valuations on every vehicle in any location at any point in time. So buyers and sellers can feel confident they’re transacting on the right car at the right price through the Manheim Marketplace.
vAuto Stockwave – AI Voice-Enabled Assistant Proactively Finds the Most Profitable Buys
Stockwave, vAuto’s wholesale vehicle sourcing software, helps dealers find the right cars to make the most profit by sourcing inventory from auction houses in every corner of the country – with no preferential treatment given to any auction. Dealers set up a business plan, and Stockwave helps them prioritize a list of vehicles at auction to look for. Although extraordinarily useful, the earlier version of Stockwave had some limitations. The dealer still needed to go find that car within the module, locate the car, go into the auction purchasing site, and go through the process to actually buy the car.
Cox Automotive’s team developed an AI enhancement called Stockwave Offers. It proactively locates vehicles on different auction sites that match the business plan for the dealer and sends them notifications via text message or email. So now instead of the dealer going out and finding those cars, Stockwave Offers brings the cars right to them.
But that’s not all. Stockwave Offers has an AI-enabled voice-recognition digital assistant called Nexi – a “sister” of Amazon’s Alexa. (Alexa is virtual assistant that operates through certain Amazon speaker devices. It is capable of voice interaction and can perform certain tasks.) In fact, Nexi, the first digital assistant for car dealerships, was created in partnership with Amazon. Dealers can actually talk to Nexi and give commands through the Alexa-enabled functionality to ask if there are any offers or any vehicles that matched the business plan. And Alexa – via Nexi – will answer right back.
VinSolutions – Using AI to Help Dealers Uncover Opportunities and Improve Sales
Personalization has become the cornerstone of customer experience as the driver of engagement and loyalty. At the same time, personalization is a complex discipline that requires advanced data management strategies and robust technological underpinnings. With VinSolutions’ Connect CRM, dealers can track customers’ preferences and patterns to help create experiences that make customers feel valued.
But the rise of AI is taking this personalization to a whole new level – using data as the voice of the customer – to match and tailor digital experiences to customer journeys. AI analyzes and aggregates data, enabling more specific recommendations to reach the right customer at the right time in the right format and through the right channel.
VinSolutions is harnessing the power of artificial intelligence to show dealers which leads need attention and how best to approach them. Its new product – VinSolutions Connect Automotive Intelligence – adds three new AI-enabled tools to its flagship Connect CRM system: Engagement Strength, Sentiment Analysis, and Buying Signals.
Engagement Strength measures the engagement of the salesperson, so managers can more easily spot missteps and opportunities for improvement within their teams. Sentiment Analysis gauges which customers are happy and who’s having trouble. Buying Signal is the result of every lead’s search history from the Autotrader, Dealer.com and Kelley Blue Book consumer car-shopping sites consolidated into strategic sales recommendations.
Connect Automotive Intelligence gives dealers a more comprehensive view of customer behavior and preferences to better understand where they are in the buying process and what they are truly most interested in. Its AI algorithms and predictive analytics distill customer information into clear, actionable insights for dealers to improve the customer experience and close the deal. VinSolutions has always kept dealers connected to customers, but now those connections are even more intelligent.
The Sky’s the Limit
At Cox Automotive, the combination of our collective intelligence and AI is solving business problems in a highly competitive, fast-paced industry. Our AI-enabled products are making the automotive world more intelligent and innovative. And for our clients, the sky’s the limit.