OneRequest vs. Other Car Shopping Websites

In a country where nobody agrees on anything these days, there is some comfort knowing most everyone can come together on at least one thing: car shopping sucks. Before getting to the end (spoiler alert: OneRequest is your solution), let’s see where we came from.

Old School Car Shopping

Back in the day, car shoppers had two options to find a car: scour newspaper classified ads or wander dealership lots. This created an extreme imbalance of knowledge—and therefore negotiating leverage—between buyers and dealers. Dealers knew far more about the overall car market, whereas buyers only knew about what happened to be available locally when they were shopping.

Since most people could only buy cars within their specific geographic radius, buyers were forced to suffer through lengthy, frustrating, and expensive dealership experiences. This reputation isn’t lost on dealers. Some have even made videos to make light of these experiences as a way to distinguish themselves from the “bad” dealers. 

The Other Car Shopping Websites

Along comes the internet, hailed as the end to our car shopping problems. The newspaper ads evolved into online advertising sites that aggregated listings from dealers who subscribe to their advertising service. Cars.com, AutoTrader, CarGurus, and TrueCar are four sites that for years have provided car shoppers far greater market knowledge.  This knowledge should in theory help rebalance the leverage between buyers and dealers. But this hasn’t happened. Car shoppers still feel frustrated and intimidated by the shopping process. Why?

These car shopping sites don’t fix car shopping problems because their business model is not to help you buy a car.  Their model is to generate as much money from the dealers as possible. Don’t believe us? Cars.com said it themselves: “Our primary customers are car dealers, OEMs and other national advertisers.”[1] Cars.com and the numerous other car shopping sites like them are designed with one specific goal in mind: send as much information as possible about you to the dealer. The more shopper information these sites deliver, the more they can demonstrate their advertising effectiveness to the dealer…and the more they can charge them.

So, like many other internet “solutions” these sites kinda sorta solved one problem (inventory) but created a bigger one in its wake: an extreme lack of privacy and control. You can’t even ask simple questions through these websites without giving your personal contact information to dealers. Some sites even sell your information to marketing companies and to other dealers. Your “reward” for asking a dealer some basic questions is an endless barrage of calls, emails and texts from dealers and other companies that now have your personal contact information. Even months later, you get the proverbial “Hi, I was calling to see if you’re still in the market for a new SUV.” 

Enter OneRequest

Under the frequently heard refrain of “there has to be a better way”, OneRequest started in 2020 with a simple, albeit challenging goal: change the way we shop for cars.  Buying a car is an exciting event that shouldn’t be fraught with stress, frustration, and disdain.  We were founded by car shoppers who, like you, have experienced a frustrating process and we’re taking a radical approach to fix it: we serve you, the shopper. How can we prove this? It’s simple. We are paid by car shoppers like you. The other sites are paid by dealers. Remember, if you aren’t paying for the product, you are the product – ala Facebook.

So, why should you pay to shop for a car when you can use other sites for free?  Think Spotify versus traditional radio stations or Netflix versus broadcast TV. OneRequest provides a superior experience and better service than any of today’s other car shopping websites. The other sites are focused on turning you into a lead and monetizing your personal information. OneRequest is only focused on your car shopping experience, not on maximizing revenue per dealer. Here is what we offer you.

OneRequest Differentiators

Inventory. Your selection of vehicles is limited at other sites because they only have listings from the dealers that pay them to advertise.  Since most dealers don’t advertise on all sites, you are forced to visit multiple car shopping sites to see a full picture of what’s available. OneRequest takes a different approach and has listings from nearly every dealer in the country.  With OneRequest, you do NOT need to repeat your search across multiple sites. We have the best selection of vehicles in the country, and your search results are your search results. No mysterious “featured listings” here.

Privacy and Control. The OneRequest platform allows you to anonymously communicate with any dealer in the country, putting you in control of the process. Only at OneRequest can you ask dealers questions, negotiate prices, and even easily share details on your trade-in – all without sharing your personal information with the dealer.  Get the information you need and negotiate your deal anonymously before you head to the dealership.  You don’t receive phone calls from dealers because they don’t have your number.  When you no longer want to receive messages, turning them off could not be easier. Marketing companies?  Forget about it – we will not sell your personal information.

Multiple Plan Options. OneRequest has plan options for every car shopper. From the DIYer who loves looking at cars and enjoys haggling for a good deal to the shopper who doesn’t have the time, energy, or stomach to shop for a car, we have a tailored solution that fits.  All of our paid plans offer an unparalleled level of privacy, control, and selection.

Concierge Pros Working For You. For those of you who would like some help along the way or simply don’t want to deal with any of it, we have you covered.  Our team of Concierge Pros has decades of industry experience.  They will help you find the right car, negotiate on your behalf, make sure there are no surprises in your paperwork, and find a great deal for your trade-in.  Our Pros know cars, they know the games that some dealers like to play and best of all, they know service.  It’s a Pro in your corner, working for you so you can enjoy your new car without going through the stress and frustration.


Regardless of your need, we have a solution for you that comes with our promise that we will not share or sell your personal information.  We are committed to serving you and creating a shopping experience that has long been missing.  So, the next time you’re in the market for a new car, know that you now have a new choice.  You can search and search and search and be bombarded for months with calls, emails, and text messages……or you can OneRequest It.


[1] Cars.com annual report dated Feb 25, 2022, page 2.

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