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July 29, 2020

This online car auction is getting sellers $4,000 more than trade-in

Cars Auctions

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Have you ever wondered why there isn’t a better way to sell your car? Generally, there’s two ways to do it - trade it in to a dealership or sell it privately.

Almost half of Americans favor trading in their car, with 45% of all 2019 car purchases including a trade-in, according to Edmunds data. The benefit of selling your car to a dealership is clear: convenience. You bring your car to the dealership, negotiate an offer, and transfer the title all in one sitting. Yet, as with most things, convenience comes at a price with the average trade-in offer being potentially thousands less than private offers. Hence, why the other half of Americans resort to spending the extra time to sell their car privately.

Private car sellers favor money over convenience. They’re willing to deal with the headache in hopes of getting more for their car: taking pictures, posting ads on multiple listing sites, managing responses, meeting and haggling with strangers, and finally meeting at a notary to transfer the title.

But what if you could have the best of both worlds - convenience and a competitive price?

Now you can.

Meet GroovyCar, the quick online car auction to local dealers, now offering Greater Philadelphia the best of both worlds by getting sellers an average of $4,000 more than trade-in, all in 24 hours.

Alex Selden, GroovyCar’s Co-Founder and President, found himself questioning unaddressed inefficiencies in the used car market after 20 years of owning Selden Motors, a Philly-based used car dealership. He knew there had to be another way.

Selden and his team of startup veterans set out to build the online auction platform and are now helping car sellers in Greater Philadelphia and South Jersey get an average of $4,000 more than trade-in, all in about 24 hours.

Selden knew this type of industry disruption would be welcomed by both consumers and dealers. GroovyCar gives consumers the convenient sale and competitive price they want while providing dealers access to desired inventory without the fees associated with wholesale auctions.

In this interview, Alex talks us through the inspiration behind GroovyCar, how it works, and why used car dealers and individual car owners should give it a go.

Q: Why did you start GroovyCar?

As a used car dealer, my biggest challenge has always been finding quality cars that I can sell to my customers at a fair price. I primarily source my inventory through wholesale auctions, which unfortunately tack on fees and shipping costs to the end retail price.

Meanwhile customers coming to my dealership with a trade-in are frequently shortchanged on the value they get, because I often need to turn around and sell these vehicles at auction. Each dealership has a niche set of cars that sell best on their lot, hence the reason many trade-ins go to auction.

With GroovyCar, we’re solving significant pain points for individual car owners and dealers by connecting the car owner to local dealers who will compete for their car. The online consumer-to-dealer auction model drives up the value of the car for the seller and eliminates the costs of wholesale auctions for the dealer.

Q: How is GroovyCar different from other online car buyers?

Unlike other online car buyers, GroovyCar is able to provide better offers because we cut out wholesalers. Most online car buyers are essentially making trade-in offers in a more convenient way than an in-person trade-in. They buy your car, and in most cases, sell it to a wholesaler, which lowers the price they are able to offer you.

GroovyCar lets dealerships and individual car owners interact directly, and ensures the car owners are getting the best possible offer from competing dealers. In addition, it’s much easier for a car owner to enter their car information on our app and get bids from multiple parties with GroovyCar’s one-stop shop auction vs. going through this process on many different car buying websites.

Q: What’s the benefit to car sellers?

GroovyCar benefits car sellers by getting them an average of $4,000 more than trade-in, with no additional effort required. In the past, sellers were faced with the dilemma of sacrificing their free time to get more money for their car, or forced to sacrifice more money for convenience. Now, they don’t have to choose, because with GroovyCar, they get both: a quick sale, and more money in their pockets.

In addition, we meticulously vet dealerships to make sure it’s an enjoyable ride for our sellers. We know we can’t grow if our partner dealerships don’t give our customers an amazing experience.

Q: How does the process work?

Our number one priority is providing a 5-star customer experience, so every step of our process was created with the customer in mind. Before putting their car up for auction, sellers can enter their VIN to get a GroovyCar Quick Estimate, which gives them an idea of how much money they could get and how it compares to trade-in value. The GroovyCar Quick Estimate is based on a proprietary algorithm that analyzes 1.5 million transactions per month to predict what dealers will pay for your car. Sellers who want to move forward with auctioning their car, can download the GroovyCar Apple or Android app or use our website to list their vehicle.

Putting your car up for auction takes just 10 minutes. Sellers answer a few questions about the car’s history and snap some photos. Dealerships then compete to win your car in a quick online auction. Once the auction ends, the seller and winning dealer arrange for the car to be dropped off or picked up, and the seller walks away with a check in hand. The whole process is risk and hassle free.

Q: How does GroovyCar make money?

It was important to us to make GroovyCar a free service for car owners. Dealerships need your car, so you shouldn’t have to pay any fees to sell it. Therefore, we charge dealerships a monthly subscription fee for access to our auctions. Dealerships are already used to paying fees for wholesale auctions. Our goal is to provide them an easier and more cost-effective way to obtain inventory for their clients. It’s a win-win for the dealerships and our car sellers.

Q: What plans does GroovyCar have for the future?

First and foremost, our plan is to focus on providing a superior customer experience. We don’t want to grow too fast and jeopardize the level of service our car sellers experience. Our short-term plans are to continue growing in the Greater Philadelphia market, onboarding more dealerships, and helping more car sellers save time and money.

The ultimate goal is to raise funding and scale across the country, launching 25 metro areas in the next four years. Head to our website,, to see how much you could get for your car, and drop us a line if you would like to see GroovyCar come to a city near you!