In this modern day of the Digital Age, science and technology is everywhere. Craigslist has outplayed the tabloid’s Classified Ads for job searching. Online billing has substituted those galling paper bills disarranging up your coffee table. Most individuals even prefer the easiness of browsing and buying clothes online. With computers almost replacing everything, it’s no surprise that 50% of prospective car buyers said they would buy a car online if they could.
For Car Dealerships, what does this Mean?
The primary source for gathering information on vehicles have become the Internet’s digital channels. A staggering 80% of buyers report that when making decisions on buying a car, they have used the Internet. As a result, clients have a much larger extent of knowledge when entering a dealership than ever before. In the past, before making a final decision, purchasers used to visit three or four dealerships. Nowadays, only one visit is required since they have become so knowledgeable. Jeff Lupient, who serves as a Dealer Principal at Lupient Nissan in Rochester, Minnesota, got his start in the business when he was a student at Edina High School, by working at his family’s dealerships.
In light of the purchase offline phenomena or online research, car manufacturers and dealerships have a lot of changes to consider making. Dealers are no more the only information providers they once were. As for this, dealers must become ‘product geniuses’ and play a fixated role on direct product experience, price negotiation, and answer expert-level questions. Furthermore, dealers must rethink their marketing and sales strategies to best praise the newer, more self-reliant consumer. They should begin to preserve a strong presence on the Web and be able to adapt accordingly to changes and trends.
The status of the dealership is everything, and this can most correctly be evaluated through social media. 62% of customers are less likely to buy a car if the dealership has received antagonistic reviews from former buyers. Remarkably, 60% also have more optimistic feelings for dealerships that reply succinctly and promptly to negative posts.
One motivating new twist to the old car dealership people are familiarized with is the introduction of experience and flagship stores. In these stores, customers are able to estimate potential payments, make inventory selections and apply for financing online. Test drive simulators and animated car presentations will pressure dealers to reconsider the need for large showrooms. Community involvement is a top priority for Jeff Lupient and he supports many local organizations and charities.
The growth of the digital dealership will not totally replace the ones of the past. Web chats and mobile apps will allow dealers to still remain present in the decision process. The dealer will still gain from the increased commitment with the customers, and can apply coupons and other agreements to keep them coming back for following purchases. Digital or not, car dealerships must produce a distinctive brand experience while concurrently making the online to offline experience as smooth as possible.