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New technology strengthens trust and transparency, says Capital One’s Mullins.

Capital One’s  Navigator Platform Builds Dealership Trust

System allows buyers and dealers to see financing details simultaneously.

Capital One introduces its Navigator Platform, a product that aims to make the car buying process more transparent for consumers and help dealers better understand consumers’ buying preferences.

The Navigator Platform brings together existing digital tools that Capital One already offers to consumers and dealers, Tim Mullins, vice president of sales analytics and digital products at Capital One, tells Wards.

We are trying to use technology to strengthen the trust and transparency” between car buyers and auto dealers, he says.

The platform includes the existing consumer-facing Auto Navigator. Accessed on the Capital One website, Auto Navigator allows car buyers to search dealer inventory, get pre-qualified for auto financing and see their real rate and payment as they shop. The platform then gives shoppers accurate loan rates and monthly payment amounts all before walking into a dealership.

The Navigator Platform submits that lead directly to the dealership’s CRM so dealers can see where a customer is in the buying journey, including the loan rate and monthly payment the customer was offered.

When a customer walks into the dealership, “everyone is looking at the same information,” says Mullins.

If a customer at the dealership changes their mind and wants a different car or a different warranty, the dealer can use Capital One’s Dealer Navigator to enter the new information and make any changes to the structure of the loan. The customer, using Auto Navigator, can enter the new information and see the same changes simultaneously.

“We were hearing a lot from consumers and our dealers that if anything changes, that’s when things break down, and we want to try to fix that,” says Mullins.

This transparency is crucial to building trust in a dealership, and trust plays an important role in which dealership a consumer decides to do business with, according to the 2023 Capital One Car Buying Outlook.

“Transparency” pertains to information that is easy to find and understand and is accurate throughout the car-buying journey, says Capital One.

Such transparency drives trust in the dealership. More than half of car buyers say they are willing to pay more for a car if it comes from a dealership they trust, the Car Buying Outlook finds.

The study found a large discrepancy in buyer and dealer perceptions of transparency in the car-buying process, however. Only 21% of consumers found the process “completely” or “very” transparent compared to 68% of dealers.

With the Navigator Platform, which connects the frontend and the backend of the car-buying process, “we are solving a customer and a dealer problem,” says Sanjiv Yajnik, president of Capital One’s financial service division.

By allowing the customer and dealer to simultaneously see how any changes impact financing, consumers can “focus on the fun of buying the car,” says Yajnik.





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