I wanted to share with everyone something very exciting we are seeing in regards to Conversion Ratios. We recently launched the on-line negotiation system for Portland Oregon dealer Ron Tonkin Honda. The pilot which is considered a "soft roll-out" commenced on February 1st. and is the first planned roll-out to be followed by Tonkin's other 16 locations. The soft roll-out involves nothing more than posting a call to action on their website that takes the customer through the on-line negotiation system.
After just 10 days with no more than posting the link to negotiate on-line, Ron Tonkin Honda is actively managing 1 to 3 new negotiation requests per day
. In fact they delivered a vehicle to a buyer within hours of turning the system on. This is great for a start, but something else is really jumping out at us, which is the big jump in conversion ratios.
The conversion ratios jump is almost double what is was in the same period from the previous month
before launching WideStorm. What's also interesting is this is mildly scientific. The Tonkins have another Honda store less than 7 miles away. They do the same advertising and everything else is pretty much the same. We looked at their conversion ratios compared to the previous month and theirs had not jumped a bit. The obvious conclusion is that consumers are generating more opportunities on the dealer's website given the invitation to negotiate online.
Brent Hillyer, Director of Sales Operations for the Ron Tonkin Family of Dealerships (www.Tonkin.com) was very encouraged by the results. "We didn't quite know what to expect when we turned the system on. We are getting so many negotiation requests now, the challenge is to manage expectations and respond quickly enough. Initially we trained just one manager, but now it's clear that we will have to train more managers given the demand. It's perfectly clear that our customers want to do business this way."
WideStorm, a division of DealerPeak is headquartered in Portland, Oregon and has hundreds of dealer clients throughout the United States. The WideStorm product is focused on providing dealers with a "competitive convenience advantage" by offering their customers the ability to negotiate on-line. DealerPeak solutions include CRM, Websites, Desking, Digital Marketing and Transactional Websites that work seamlessly on a unified Web-based platform. This allows our dealers to reduce the number of vendors they deal with and drive cost out of their business.