Customer retention is the end game- it’s what all dealerships are looking to nail and this is becoming increasingly hard. Doug Van Sach, AutoLoop’s Vice President, put it perfectly when he said, “the hard truth for dealers is most consumers have redefined what it means to be loyal in the digital age.”
When it comes to customer retention, I know this is every dealership’s primary goal but it’s easier said than done. The car buying process has changed because the customer has. We now live in a digital world which allows the customer to be firmly in the driving seat. The modern customer now has a range of dealers, service options and price plans to choose from, and all with the click of a button.
The traditional car buying process is a thing of the past, in today’s world customers clearly do business on their own terms and they come well reinforced with information, which means they know exactly what they want. But, one thing that hasn’t changed is the emotion attached to buying a car.
The digitalisation of the buying process has particularly effected the automotive industry. Customers are carrying out most of the buying journey online and, in most cases, only come into the dealership when they have almost made their purchase decision. Everything is quick, easy and optimised and this is what has become the norm. Anything that doesn’t hit the mark with those points sticks out like an underperforming sore thumb.
According to the SMMT 2.5 million cars were registered in 2017. This is a 5.7% drop from 2016. This may come as a surprise to many as the market has been growing year on year since 2012.
The word CRM often brings a shiver down many people’s spine, but let’s be honest, if you have a CRM that’s organised and holds clean data, it’s a highly valuable asset. A CRM that is managed and used correctly has the ability to streamline your entire dealership sales process and improve performance of each of your leads.
Hopefully your answer to the above question is “great!”. If it is, then good for you but you should read on because it could always be better. If your answer wasn’t quite so positive then welcome, this quick blog is here to help.
I’ve got some questions…
Your DMS is there to measure, report, input jobs and provide clarity and transparency when it comes to your internal processes and communications, right? But, what about the customer?
Face-to-face interactions are far less frequent in our digital world. But face-to-face interaction cannot be beaten in terms of delivering customer service, we’re all humans and have a basic need for connection and relationships. This will always be the case.
When it comes to your dealership I know you’re looking to drive engagement, revenue and ultimately retention, and service is where it all happens- that’s where the margin is. Take the diagram below for example, service allows you to make the margin profit, which drives customer loyalty and loyalty drives repeat sales. But for all this to happen customer experience is key.