DealerRater Panel

Dealer of the Year Award Program: Overview

DealerRater Dealer of the Year Award Program




The DealerRater Dealer of the Year Award Program was initiated in 2009. Through this award program, a select number of car dealerships throughout the United States and Canada are awarded for outstanding customer satisfaction as expressed through customers’ online reviews posted on DealerRater’s website.

DealerRater’s Dealer of the Year awards are given to car dealerships that have the highest PowerScore™ in their brand category at both the national level and the state/provincial level. This year, we will also be offering new regional awards in the U.S., which will be given to the dealerships with the highest PowerScore™ in 8 geographic regions, regardless of brand.

The number of categories represented in the Award Program has grown every year since the program was initiated. There is an award category for every brand that has at least one qualifying dealership, as well as an award for each of the 8 geographical regions.

Award Criteria


In order to qualify for a Dealer of the Year award, a dealership must meet the following criteria:
  • Minimum of 25 reviews on DealerRater for the previous calendar year.
  • Minimum of 1 positive review in each calendar quarter of the previous calendar year.
  • Average rating greater than 4.0 (out of a maximum of 5.0) for reviews received during the previous calendar year.
  • Must not have been blacklisted during the previous calendar year.

Determining the Winners


To rank dealerships and determine the Dealers of the Year, a PowerScore™ is calculated for each dealership on DealerRater.com. The dealership with the highest PowerScore for each award category (by brand for each State/Province, as well as nationally) will receive a Dealer of the Year award.


How does the PowerScore™ work?
A dealer’s PowerScore is based on its average star rating and the number of reviews. We use a Bayesian algorithm to determine an eligible dealer’s PowerScore. This score is then weighted against DealerRater site averages. Effectively, this means that the winning dealership must score highly on both review volume and average rating. Simply having the most reviews, or conversely having the highest average rating on a small number of reviews, is not enough to guarantee that a dealership has the highest PowerScore.

Regional Award Categories
We will be introducing a Regional Award category this year which will award the dealership with the top PowerScore™, regardless of brand, in 8 geographic regions. The 8 regions that we will be awarding are: New England, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest, Plains, Rocky Mountain, Southwest, and West. The list of states included in these regions are based on the regional breakdown used by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

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