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It's the holiday season, that means one thing, you only have a few weeks left to hit your year end sales quotas. While this turns into a very stressful time for many dealerships, it doesn't have to be this way; so put away your Grinch costume and use that shiny little device (smartphones) all you customers have to turn your inventory into perfectly wrapped presents that constantly keep driving off your lot.
According to PunchTab 90% of consumers plan to shop online this holiday season,and with consumers spending more than 15 hours per week researching on their smartphones capturing capturing your customers pre-purchase is essential to ultimately gaining their business.
You want to capture all these customers as they look for vehicles don't you?
Shoppers make store visits after searching, and if they find all the information they are looking for they are 75% more likely to visit the store.
A big reason many dealerships are moving twords mobile apps is to "lock" customers into their specific dealership and provide a research resource that deters shoppers from looking elsewhere.
Search, SEO rankings and re-targeting are all great methods to capture your customers but they also have one major disadvantage, they are broken links and require customers to keep searching and visiting your website.
While a dealership will essentially have a strong combination of all these methods the take away here is that digital is a powerful way to connect and capture your customers. The majority of customers start their journey with search, so being present in their path to purchase is essential to eventually getting that sale.
It's obvious customers are on their phones, but this doesn't have to be a bad thing. Make the best use out of their time and grab their attention using your mobile app and search results.
Inform customers that your entire dealership can be accessed through their smartphone and pitch them benefits of your dealer app
this creates a long list of benefits:
"Put simply, retailers can use their online presence—website, apps, mobile ads and search results—to assist shoppers in-store. This includes the integration of local information in their online presence. Geo-targeting content and ads helps retailers connect with shoppers who may be in close proximity to their store or already there." - Google Think Insights >> See the study
Location targeting technology now allows dealers to send a targeted messages to mobile shoppers at precise moments in the car shopping process. The technology can identify when a potential customer is visiting a competing dealership, obtaining a service quote from a competing service center or cross shopping you inventory. The system can then automatically deliver a coupon or offer to that customer’s phone, incentivizing a visit back to the dealership.
Relying on direct mailers, commercials and radio ads can all be nerve-racking and hard to track the actual returns to your investments. Quit questioning your marketing and go directly to the source, their smartphone! Advertise directly on the device they use most. Actively marketing your customers in real-time maximizes your chance to capture and convert them, with tons of retails using Geo-location to best understand their customers shopping routes and habits why wouldn't your dealership do the same?
With the majority of your customers starting their journey online having a strong presence and digital method to capture them will drastically increase your in-store business. Mobile applications are taking over the retail space and capturing this huge customer base maximizes your opportunity to close the most sales possible. Once you have a customer in your store, capitalize on this! You talk about your inventory, service department, and unbeatable prices, why not roll all of this into an app that provides you and your customer countless benefits? Finally, actively market your customers directly on their digital device, use the vast amount of information you have to your advantage.
By Josh Knutson, AutoMotion Dealer App