How car dealerships are futureproofing their business processes

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Car dealerships may be seemingly one of the oldest types of business under the sun (well, for as long as the car itself has existed), but that doesn’t mean you can depend on your own car dealership always succeeding if it simply carries on with what has always worked.

At this point in the early-mid 2020s, there has come to be much excited talk about such technological solutions as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual and augmented reality (VR). And of course, some of these could have a major role to play in what car dealerships come to look like over the years and decades ahead.

However, the story of how you can best futureproof your car dealership’s business processes doesn’t solely come down to how you might utilise various elements of “new” technology.

Regardless, if any car dealership is to stand a chance of long-term survival, it needs to keep abreast of the latest developments, and adapt to them in its own operations, while always giving customers the optimal experiences. And of course, the business will still need to turn a healthy profit, not least so that it can invest further into its own future.

How can you accomplish all of those things with your own company? Below, we have set out some of the best ways car dealerships are presently futureproofing their business processes – and therefore, how your own dealership can do the same.

  1. Sales taking place via sophisticated online platforms

As the world continues to move ever-more online, an online presence is essential for any business looking to succeed and thrive in the long term – and this includes car dealerships. An online presence is perhaps even more important for car dealerships than it is for other industries, as the level of competition tends to be much higher.

A clear, accessible online presence allows dealerships to massively expand their audience, reaching a far wider range of potential customers than would be possible if traditional advertising alone was used. It also enables access to in-depth customer data and information that can be extremely valuable – this includes metrics such as their browsing history compared to their purchase history, and any relevant preferences.

In addition, online sales platforms make it easier for customers to see what is on offer, without having to leave the comfort of their own homes. This is super convenient and offers major appeal for great numbers of buyers.

  1. AI-driven customer relationship management systems

Customer relationships are a crucial aspect of any business – and particularly one in a highly competitive sector, as is the case for car dealerships.

It probably won’t be news to you that a lot of people have been talking in hyped-up terms about AI in recent years. However, you might not have realised how effective AI can be in helping a car dealership business to manage its customer relationships, at least when this technology is used well.

By investing in AI technology for elements such as data analysis, you can source relevant, vital information about buying preferences, demographics, price points, and so on. This is just what you will need in order to make personalised recommendations to customers that they will actually appreciate.

Not only does this help increase your car dealership’s chances of a successful sale, but it also reassures customers that you’re putting their needs and interests first. This, in turn, will help build positive, long-term relationships with customers.

You could also make use of dedicated used car dealership inventory management solutions, which will help ensure you have an up-to-the-minute record of exactly what you have in stock to offer customers. This can be ideal for helping to boost customer satisfaction.

  1. Combinations of B2B and B2C

One key error that many businesses – including car dealerships – typically make is to focus solely on B2B or B2C, with emphasis on one, often at the expense of the other.

By creating an experience that allows both to converge seamlessly, you can cover a wider set of bases, appeal to a broader audience, and ensure you are setting your business up for future success.

  1. Clear, systemic, and consistent pricing

As part of building your digital presence and establishing your business in the digital space, you need to make sure the experience for the customer is as smooth, transparent, and stress-free as possible. This also means ensuring your pricing as a car dealership is clear and consistent.

AI can be a big source of assistance here – there are a number of programs and options that can analyse customer data, and offer the best prices and deals based on this. This helps to create convincingly personalised recommendations, thereby also helping to increase the chances of a successful sale.

  1. The creation of compelling omnichannel experiences

We have mentioned the importance of establishing and maintaining a strong digital presence, but your car dealership’s strategy should not stop there. Customers are increasingly demanding an engaging omnichannel experience as part of their customer journey.

The term “omnichannel” refers to a system of distinct touchpoints, all of which are linked and connected. Essentially, customers have the ability to finish their journey on one platform, and seamlessly pick it back up on another.

In the world of car dealerships, this may shape the approach the business takes to offering customer finance, with customers enabled to complete their entire financial transaction in a single platform, rather than having to leap from platform to platform.

Focusing on building a clear, easy-to-navigate omnichannel system looks set to form a key aspect of the future of car dealerships. So, it should be high on your “to-do” list if you want to really futureproof your business.

Never underestimate the relevance and power of futureproofing

Running a successful car dealership can be a challenge. So, it is important to ensure you are keeping up with the latest operational trends and innovations in technology to help futureproof your business, so that you can maximise your business’s chances of longevity and success.

 

 

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