Pre-pandemic car dealers were already feeling the pressure, from disruptive online automotive retailers entering the market to semiconductor shortages holding up the supply chains. Add to that two years of limited contact and financial strains, and it becomes clear that the car-buying landscape has changed significantly.
In our recent webinar, held in partnership with MotorTrader.com, we explored how dealers can carve out a clear path to showrooms and avoid stalling during the post-pandemic recovery. Scott Minihane, one of our call intelligence experts here at Infinity, was joined by Keith Jackman, head of marketing & CRM at Sandown Group, which was recently awarded Mercedes-Benz retailer of the year.
Why are calls the new fuel for your sales machines?
It’s been a tough couple of years for the industry. In 2020, we saw sales drops by almost 30% and this issue has been compounded by major interruptions to the way automotive retailers do business. Plus, billions of pounds have been poured into online disruptors such as Cinch and Cazoo, which means traditional dealerships are feeling the pressure.
On the other hand, consumer intent to purchase cars is now close to pre-pandemic levels. While this is a promising sign, there’s clearly still work to be done. It’s now vital that dealerships build strong relationships with their buyers and renew their focus on the customer experience to maximise sales and accelerate recovery.
That’s where calls come in. 78% of UK consumers still want to talk to a person before purchasing, especially when they’re considering big ticket items such as cars. In fact, a recent government survey found that 62% of car buyers still do not favour making a car purchase entirely online. The customer journey is the key to boosting car sales and the phone call is a critical part of that journey.
What’s next on the roadmap for dealerships?
We’ve seen an increasing number of customer calls for our automotive clients. In a digital first world, it’s easy to overlook the value of a phone call, but you can’t afford to underestimate their value for both driving sales and enhancing the customer experience.
Each time a customer picks up the phone, they offer you a wealth of information that can be used to improve different areas of the business. If you’re looking to optimise marketing campaigns to generate better results or focus more on advertising promotions, it’s important to start treating your calls like fuel for your revenue engine.
If you’re ready to find out more about the continued importance of call data for automotive dealers, we’ve got the ultimate roadmap. Our new Smart Guide to the Automotive Industry can give you the inside track on why customers are picking up the phone, how automotive brands and dealerships can accelerate sales and a comprehensive case study into how a major brand drove new sales and customers using call intelligence.