2 of 6
User car sales ramp up
User car sales ramp up
Dealix General Manager Anna Zornosa
Redwood City, Calif.
Launched: 2005
Sales: Less than $1 million in 2007, $5 million in 2008

Car sales may be slumping around the U.S., but they've been a gold mine for Dealix, an online company that helps customers find cars and connects dealers with shoppers in their area.

Dealix, a division of The Cobalt Group, has had a used car site since 2005, but it was always a sideline to Dealix's new car business, according to general manager Anna Zornosa. Last year, as the recession deepened, Zornosa decided to invest more in the used car market. She ordered a relaunch of Usedcars.com in January 2009.

The site was upgraded to help buyers search for green vehicles and to provide comparisons of dealer pricing with Kelley Blue Book values.

"We increased our customer base 60% in the last six months of 2008 on the used-car side," Zornosa says. "A lot of shoppers are very interested in green vehicles, but often don't know that cars don't have to be hybrids or electric to be fuel efficient and environmentally friendly, so we provide that information."

Zornosa says that 11 million used-car shoppers visit the site each month, and more than 50,000 of them contact dealers about listings. Usedcars.com now only charges dealers a fee if a customer contact is made through the site.

"We think this is a business model that fits the economic times," Zornosa says. "Last year, our dealers were selling two new cars for every one used car. Now, they're selling two used cars for every one new car."

NEXT: When the bank takes it back

LAST UPDATE: Mar 06 2009 | 4:11 PM ET
Sponsored by
More Galleries
5 startups that are reimagining the world Bricks that grow from microorganisms, household garbage turned into art, three-wheeled bike-cars -- these startups are redefining urban living. More
Blue collar entrepreneurs These five entrepreneurs took their blue collar experience and used it to launch innovative businesses. More
7 lifehacks to eliminate your holiday hassle Whether curating the perfect gift or finding a pet-sitter, these startups offer time-saving services that might just seem like holiday magic. More

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.