For decades, word of mouth has been the main source of information for finding out where the best place to buy a car is. Today, most people decide where to shop for a car based on their online research. With the stigma still looming around the automotive industry, most consumers do extensive online research before shopping for a car.
What does this mean for your dealership? The answer is simple. You need to have a solid digital strategy to ensure you’re not missing out on sales opportunities. In this article, we’re going to talk about 5 basic digital strategies you need to implement at your dealership to sell more cars.
This may seem like an obvious thing to have for a dealership, but there are still plenty of Canadian dealerships with horribly functioning websites. If you want to sell more cars online, you need to have a website that functions well and is regularly updated. Think of your website as an extension of your showroom, it’s where you sell your product. If your website is bad, chances are you will steer customers away. When you get new vehicles in your lot, be sure to take photos of them and upload them as listings to your site right away.
Social media is a great way for your prospective customers to get a feel for your dealership. It’s important that your dealership's social media is personal and not just generic fluff content. Buying a car is a huge purchase and your customers want to feel like they know who they’re buying from. Be sure to communicate with your followers, respond to comments and make comments on other posts. You’d be amazed at the bond you can form with your community via social media. Whether you’re introducing your staff members, showing off a new vehicle or doing a funny video skit, social media is an essential part of a successful dealership's digital strategy.
Email marketing is a great digital strategy to reach out to customers. Once you have a decent-sized email list, you can start informing your subscribers about deals, promotions, and new products. Additionally, you can design flows that target people at particular times of the car-buying process, such as the three to four-year mark, when people begin to think about trading in their old car for a new one, in the fall when people should be purchasing/switching to winter tires, or in the spring when people require a summer maintenance tune-up.
Having a bunch of amazing reviews online can help your dealership a ton. On the contrary, having a few bad reviews can significantly affect your dealership. Consumers are depending on reviews more and more while making purchase decisions in today's digital age. People will be able to read these reviews if your dealership appears in online searches. A negative review will limit your dealership and potentially steer customers away. Work with your various departments to ensure that they are providing each and every customer with exceptional service, and take the time to manage your reviews (including negative ones) to develop a reliable online reputation. If you have an incredibly happy customer, ask them if they’d be willing to leave an online review.
Today, paid advertisements are incredibly important for reaching your target market. You can use paid advertisements to contact people who live in a specific area. You can also target specific demographics, buyer habits, online search terms, and a number of other factors. You can also utilize a retargeting ad to display your content to website visitors. Basically, your advertisement will be displayed to anyone who has recently visited your website. This is crucial because if they have already browsed your website, they can be convinced to come back if they see an advertisement for it or perhaps the vehicle they were considering. Retargeting advertisements are one of the most effective ways to bring back lost customers.
Most automobile enthusiasts are well aware that frigid winter temperatures can adversely affect the total driving range of an electric vehicle (EV). This quirk is often cited by proponents of gasoline-powered cars as a reason why EVs may face challenges in certain regions. However, recent research from Automotive News suggests that extreme heat can have similar, if not more significant, impacts on EV range.
Car dealerships today still have a bad rap for playing games with their customers. Whether it’s dodging questions, using high-pressure techniques to book appointments, or doing bait & switch tricks with sales offers, these all hurt your dealership's reputation. Playing games and being deceitful in your business may let you walk away with a few lucky deals but it will ultimately hurt you in the long run. Today, customers are smart and aware of the stigma associated with car salespeople so you need to be ethical and provide a transparent sales process.
News has emerged that Ford Motor Company is planning to incorporate the necessary hardware for BlueCruise, a semi-autonomous driving system designed to compete with GM's SuperCruise and Tesla's Autopilot, into an extensive number of 2024-model-year vehicles. However, it appears that utilizing this feature may come at an additional cost.