At a time of great change in consumer behaviour, it’s the businesses that are responding and adapting to those changes that are reaping the biggest rewards. Automotive retailers are no exception to this, and it’s helping them convert more leads and retain more customers as a result.
But what are the needs and expectations of today’s customer, and how can technology like CitNOW support your response? In this blog, we’ll explore four key business drivers for retailers, and how some of our long-standing customers are using our platform to help them get there.
Your virtual shop window
Customers attending the showroom or forecourt as a first port of call to evaluate a potential purchase is being increasingly superseded by online research. Our recent survey has found that nearly 90% of customers would prefer to start their next car-buying journey online.
This means that the real shop window must now be accompanied by a virtual one, where customers can access detailed videos of a car’s interior and exterior, either through the dealer website or via social media channels.
At one dealer group sites are using CitNOW to create video walkarounds of used car stock, enabling them to clearly demonstrate used car conditions and any key features – something which can be difficult to get across through imagery alone. With imagery used in combination with video, online adverts can be much more engaging and successful. As transparency has increased through the detail they include in their sales videos, the group has noticed a clear impact on conversions.
Convert more sales leads
When customers gain more transparency into the details of a car via video, they feel more empowered and confident about making faster and more informed buying decisions. This helps dealerships achieve their KPIs, and develop long-lasting relationships with customers based on trust. One dealer group has seen embracing CitNOW’s personalised video technology at different stages of the car buying journey help them achieve their core KPIs around volume, profit and quality.
Increase workshop profitability
Shifts in customer preferences have also transferred to aftersales. Video communications help customers to make more informed decisions about spending on repairs, with our research finding that 70% of motorists say they value the transparency that video provides in the workshop – increasing the likelihood of work being approved and facilitating fast responses.
As well as helping to highlight work identified, video can also be used to maximise workshop revenue by targeting individual customers with the services that might be relevant to them. In particular, seasonal work which customers may sometimes overlook, such as winter tyre checks and air-con regassing in the summer, can be especially profitable.
One dealer group has found a direct correlation between dealership success and the use of CitNOW’s Sales and Workshop solutions, which are helping them drive more repeat custom, and increase profitability in parts and workshop hours. As a result of their initial success, CitNOW Web has been rolled out by the group across its entire network.
Retain more customers
Customers can now shop around more easily than they ever could before, making it harder for dealer groups to breed loyalty and turn first-time customers into long-time customers. Personalised video used throughout the buying journey helps to strengthen the relationship between retailer and customer, encouraging them to engage with the same dealer group post-sale, while also improving Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) scores.
One dealer group has maintained strong relationships with their customers by increasing the creation of high-quality and personalised sales and vehicle health check videos – in turn helping them to achieve outstanding CSI scores and repeat custom. As one of their senior managers described it: “The majority of customers who use CitNOW’s star rating option will award us five stars, not least because of the quality of the information provided and the improved ease of communication at every customer touchpoint.”
All over the world, video is already proving to be an immensely powerful tool in helping retailers connect with customers whose preferences and motivations are changing significantly. For those who haven’t yet fully embraced all the possibilities that video can deliver, there’s no time to lose in getting up to speed and creating experiences that your customers – and your bottom line – will love.
Learn more about how retailers like yours are enhancing their retail experience and driving business performance here.