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Weather event proves value of hosted website chat

As much of the nation is gripped in this winter nightmare, many auto dealership staff members are staying home because the doors are shut at the store due to the storm or to care for children who can’t go to closed schools. So if your BDC or sales staff isn't at their desks, are they responding to live chat requests from home? And even if they are, do you honestly think it is their HIGHEST priority as the storms swirl outside and the kids are dancing on the furniture?

What about your customers? Do you just think they're watching football playoffs or The Bachelor? No, if they have power, they are likely online. How many do you think are looking for an all-wheel-drive or 4x4 vehicle while they are stranded in their homes right now?

Of course massive cold weather events and hurricanes don't strike year-round, but they do happen, and are one of many reasons a hosted live chat service should be part of your dealership website marketing strategy.  

The weather is just one reason to have your live chat handled by a quality service (like CarChat24). A few other benefits include:

  • Eliminate staffing challenges (80 or more hours a week of coverage)
  • Quicker response times
  • No learning curve for software or conversation tactics / scripts
  • Eliminate missed opportunities after hours (with 24/7 option)

If you are still trying to decide if a live chat option can benefit your dealership by increasing leads and improving car sales, here are a ways it can help your store:

  • Doesn’t replace existing contact form leads
  • Maximize current website investment
  • Greet prospects on the website (virtual lot)
  • Increase customer satisfaction (online and overall)
  • More leads >>> more deals

Don't let the weather stop you from adding buyers to your sales pipeline. Leverage the full power of the internet with a quality hosted live chat option.


Tom LaPointe CarChat24  Interactive Media Manager / Industry Analyst 24/7 Interactive Automotive Dealer Website LIVE CHAT Solutions Hosted or In-House Options – FREE web chat software 727-638-0195

Tom has an MBA in Marketing and is an automotive writer and author with more than 15 years experience in virtually every aspect of the retail auto industry. He began working with the internet building websites at Johns Hopkins University in the 90's, and has been a performance leader in nearly every dealer role, from sales and service, to web development and viral marketing.

Views: 158

Tags: CarChat24, chat software, dealer websites, live chat, website marketing, websites


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Comment by Big Tom LaPointe on January 13, 2014 at 9:58am

Thanks, Brian! While the live chat provider segment is competitive, the biggest challenge is still getting dealers on board with the concept - whether it is hosted chat or self-managed. Just like your experiences in the early days creating EFFECTIVE dealer websites, sometimes dealers have struggled to either find value in the live chat concept.

Many have been burned trying to implement it themselves or going a little TOO cost-effective. Happy new year!

Comment by Brian Bennington on January 12, 2014 at 3:19pm

Now you've got it, Tom.  A straight ahead selling proposition for your CarChat24 services.  While the bad weather experience that recently hit the midwest and east coast might not be regular enough to motivate dealers to jump on it, the event presented you with a solid opportunity to actually list some CarChat24 benefits.  I admire your fortrightness in believing in your services and wanting your ADM colleagues to know more about them.

I've noted the periodic criticisms voiced by some ADM members when blog content heads toward marketing the author's products/services, but I think they're missing the point.  We've a vast number of members working for dealership support services and being able to learn about them and how they work is both interesting and educational.  I'm not crazy about a company being listed as the presenter, e.g. Cobalt, etc., as they're usually somewhat tedious and too generalized to have any relatable value.  (I have no axe to grind with Cobalt as they were extremely helpful installing the first dealership website I designed over 20 years ago.  Of note, I do not design websites–that first one was done only because I knew more about them at the time than the dealership.)

The ideal vendor-supporting ADM post should be simple enough to understand so that the reader could explain the vendor's basic features and benefits to another party or entity.  I know when one of my dealer customers mentions a problem they're having, I'd surely like to help with the answer and, if asked, be knowledgable enough about the various services I've read about here to be able to suggest pursuing the solution with a fellow ADM member-vendor.  It may seem out-of-date in this "I know more acronyms than you, i.e., so I'm smarter than you" environment, but helping ADM members however we can should be an ADM priority.    


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