This is an article from the August 2006 issue of DM Review's Extended Edition. Click on this link for more information on DMR Extended Edition or to download this entire issue in a PDF format.Car dealers perform a series of activities with the ultimate purpose of selling vehicles and services to customers. Automotive manufacturers face many challenges when evaluating and optimizing the performance of their dealership channel. Because the manufacturer does not own its franchise-based sales channel, it often lacks direct visibility into the day-to-day activities of an automotive dealership and cannot apply the same management controls used to improve the performance of corporate operations.

How well can a manufacturer measure dealer behavior, discover and communicate problems, and coordinate solutions? How effectively can manufacturers and dealers use this information? The automotive manufacturer can identify low- and high-performing dealers by their bottom line, but gaining insight into why dealers perform as they do and increasing their performance proves to be more difficult.

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