DealerRater Panel

Dealer of the Year FAQ

Frequently asked questions about the Dealer of the Year Award




1) What is the Dealer of the Year Award Program?
The DealerRater Dealer of the Year Award Program was initiated in 2009 to recognize a select number of car dealerships throughout the United States and Canada for outstanding customer satisfaction as expressed through customers’ reviews posted on DealerRater.com.

DealerRater’s Dealer of the Year awards are given to car dealerships that have the highest PowerScore for the calendar year in their brand category at both the national level as well as the state/provincial level.

2) Who can win a Dealer of the Year Award?
Any dealership which is currently listed on DealerRater.com is eligible to receive a Dealer of the Year award. A dealer's certification does not determine their ability to win an award - Dealers of the Year are determined based on their reviews, as calculated through a PowerScore.

3) What is a PowerScore and how are the scores calculated?
A dealer’s PowerScore is based on its average star rating and number of reviews for each quarter of the relevant calendar year. We use a Bayesian algorithm to determine an eligible dealer’s PowerScore each quarter of the year, and the average of the quarterly scores gives us an overall score for the year. The algorithm compares multiple statistics against a baseline average - essentially, we compare each eligible dealer to the average of all the other eligible dealers to see where they stack up, and this gives us one number which we can use to rank the award finalists

4) What are the criteria to be eligible for a Dealer of the Year award?
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.

5) When are Dealer of the Year winners announced, and how are the winners notified?
Dealer of Year winners are typically announced early in the year - in late January or early-to-mid February - in the year of the award. The 2019 Dealer of the Year Award (based on the 2018 calendar year) will be announced January 25th, 2019 at the National Automobile Dealer Association show. Dealer of the Year award winners will also receive email notification. Once the winners are announced, you can view a complete list of winners by clicking here.

6) What happens if no dealership meets the minimum criteria to win an award?
If no dealership within a given state/province and brand category meets the minimum criteria for a Dealer of the Year award, then no award will be given for that category.

7) How are Dealer of the Year awards determined in regards to dealerships with multiple brands?
The manufacturer selected when the consumer submits a review on DealerRater will be used to determine a Dealer's rating for each brand. For a dealership which sells multiple brands, reviews for each brand are calculated separately. For example, a Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram store might win an award for Chrysler, but not for any of their other brands.

8) What year is the Dealer of the Year award based on?
The Dealer of the Year award is based on the calendar year prior to the year of the award. For example, the 2019 award is based on the 2018 calendar year.

9) What can a dealer do to win a Dealer of the Year award?
There is no magical formula for winning a Dealer of the Year award. Consistent positive reviews throughout the calendar year are needed to be in the best position to win. Competition for Dealer of the Year winners can be very close; the difference is sometimes as small as ten-thousandths of a percent. The most important thing is to have a strategy to generate consistent positive reviews. If you would like additional advice on strategies or best practices for generating reviews, you can contact our client advisers for more information: http://www.dealerrater.com/consumer/company/contact-us

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