We here at AutoTrader focus on empowering the Canadian car shopper to be more confident when buying or selling a new or used car. We know buying a car can be a stressful experience, especially in an environment where a global microchip shortage is causing all sorts of delays and pricing fluctuations. Luckily for you, this is exactly where AutoTrader can become even more useful, and I’m not just saying this because I work here – I honestly think that some of the features AutoTrader offers are just so useful and they’ll make buying your next car way easier.

Besides having the most new and used car listings in the country, you can browse the marketplace from absolutely anywhere using the website or the app, and it’s easy to know you’re getting the best deal.

Here are five ways you can use AutoTrader like a boss to help navigate car buying especially during this microchip shortage.

Price Badging

Price Badging might be my favourite AutoTrader feature. Pricing can be the most stressful part of buying a car, so this takes out all the guesswork and adds a level of transparency that I think can be really empowering. The tool scans hundreds of thousands of listings in real time and tells you if the price you see on a listing is great, good, fair, or above average, so you can feel confident you’re getting the best deal on your next car.

The next time you’re browsing for cars, pay attention to the price badging. If there’s a car you love but the badge doesn’t say great price, reach out and ask the dealer about it. They might be able to tell you about special options or other elements of the car that explain why it’s been priced that way.

Search by Filters

No matter how specific the car you’re searching for is, AutoTrader makes it easy to find using search filters and our advanced search tool.

If you’re looking for something as specific as a blue electric SUV with all-wheel drive and 20,000 kilometres on the clock that is under a certain price, you can search with those specific parameters and more. Beyond the normal stuff like price, year, make, model, and colour, you can also search by trims, distance to your home, body type, powertrain, fuel type, transmission, seating capacity, and more. You can even search for cars you can buy fully online if that’s what floats your boat.

Expand Your Search

The microchip shortage can make finding your next car a bit tricky because there’s less inventory of new and used cars right now, but here’s a pro tip: expand your search radius.

Your perfect car might not be in your neighbourhood, but AutoTrader will have it, maybe in a neighbouring town or city, so it will save you the legwork of having to travel there to check it out first. You can search from as little as 25 km away to all the way across your province, or even nationwide. The larger your search radius, the more cars you’ll find.

Saved Search

I love using the Saved Search feature on the app so I don’t have to enter in the details for the type of car I’m looking for each time.

Also, if you don’t have time for endless scrolling, set up email alerts or push notifications on the app. Any time there’s a new listing that matches what you’re looking for, AutoTrader sends an alert to your inbox so you’ll be the first to know. You can also set up price drop alerts that will ping you if a car you liked gets a new lower price.

Instant Cash Offer

If you’re trading in or selling your car, the Instant Cash Offer feature makes it much easier. And because the microchip shortage means used cars are in such high demand right now, dealerships might be willing to pay top dollar for your car, so if you’re downsizing or work from home and don’t need two cars in the family any longer, now is a great time to sell.

All you have to do is enter some details about your car, and AutoTrader will scan thousands of listings for similar cars to instantly give you a trade-in value. After that, you bring it into a participating dealer where they’ll check it out, and you can walk out with cash the same day or use the cash towards the purchase of another car.

AutoTrader is truly a one-stop shop during all stages of your car buying journey and don’t forget, we also have a team of the country’s best automotive experts to help guide you along the way with tips and advice, car reviews, news, entertainment, and more.