Today’s consumer is always connected. In fact, 77% of adults in the U.S. have a smartphone, according to statista. Having 24/7 access to the Internet in our pockets has created a connectivity that has fundamentally changed retail forever—including what buyers expect at the dealership.
About half of all car buyers expressed displeasure during the car buying process, and most of that stemmed from the amount of time the sales process took.1 What if you could increase buyer satisfaction and sell more cars by optimizing your sales process? If you incorporate the efficiency of mobile tools in your Sales and F&I process, you can do just that. Read on to learn how you can improve your process at each stage of the sale.
Before the Sale
According to a recent AutoTrader study, consumers spend 59% of their car buying process online researching and shopping. So, you need to have tools in place on your website to capture the car buyer’s attention.
The number one rule is to make sure you have a mobile-friendly website with pictures and descriptions of your inventory. Generally, car buyers won’t relate to the stock OEM photos, so make sure you have pictures of the actual vehicle sitting on your lot.
Second, according to AutoTrader, “nearly 1 in 4 buyers are not already aware of F&I products prior to going to the dealership.” Since selling more F&I products is fundamental to the bottom line, we suggest providing F&I education on your website. Online information will allow car buyers to become familiar with the options ahead of time and be more likely to buy. Statistically, F&I product purchases are higher from consumers who are educated on the options beforehand.
Also, create an online process using pre-qualification tools to begin structuring a deal before the consumer ever walks into the dealership. With online tools, you can begin building a profile on the car buyer, such as trade-in information, desired monthly payment, characteristics they are looking for in a car, and more. In turn, use that information to suggest vehicles from your lot and offer an online deal. This online process allows your potential customer the convenience of understanding the structure of the deal behind the anonymity of the Internet—the deal is not binding and they do not feel pressured, and they would be more likely to come to you when they make a purchase.
During the Sale
Every salesperson should have a tablet when walking the lot with a customer. With that tablet, they should implement the following steps:
- Scan the customer’s driver’s license and update the data into the CRM and/or DMS immediately
- Scan the customer’s VIN
- Search inventory and be able to locate, cost out, and apply a unit to a deal in seconds
- Communicate with other departments via chat or text
- See bookout values in an instant
- Show the customer a vehicle history report
- See open ROs and real-time cost of sale adjustments on any unit
After the Sale
Most times, the customer must wait idly for the F&I manager to begin the process. According to Autotrader, “Of the 3-hours average time spent at the dealer during the purchase process, more than half of that time is spent negotiating or doing paperwork, resulting in a 56% satisfaction rate for the process.”
What if you could improve the satisfaction rate by presenting the F&I menu and scenarios on a tablet while they wait for the F&I department? You will enhance the customer experience by applying less pressure for them to buy and reducing the time spent on the total process. You can also present pricing and payment options and utilize digital contracting all on a tablet.
Creating the right process, combined with mobile products, can increase efficiencies, improve customer satisfaction, and deliver real, long-term results for your dealership. Check out how Autosoft products can help you optimize your mobile strategy for your DMS, Sales and F&I, and Inventory Management.