An Introduction to eCommerce for Car Dealers

As a car dealership owner or supervisor, you are tasked with not only bringing in high revenues every month but providing an excellent customer experience. However, you may have noticed that year after year those numbers are becoming smaller, and yes there’s a reason for that. Today’s consumer wants to research their vehicle choices for days before making a purchase. Sales professionals today are not seeing the same enthusiasm from consumers as they once did. Therefore, moving your business onto an eCommerce platform may be your best option.

Your Showroom is Going Out of Style

A car showroom once held the position of being the only place you could truly take a good look at the newest models. Buyers could walk around, kick the tires, ask questions, and much more. However, with the introduction of the internet, consumers are now seeking more than just visual information. Today potential buyers want to look at past performance, instant estimates, Kelley Blue Book potential resale, and much more than a showroom can provide. Rather than merely saying that you don’t have all of the information at hand, why not direct them to your website? You may not make the sale that day, but you did not lose the customer just yet.

Benefits of Selling Cars Online

As stated above, the average consumer today is searching for more than just a tour of the car. On average, more consumers will seek to learn as much as they can online before even stepping on a dealership lot. So, what do you do if they won’t come to your lot? The answer is simple—you go to them. The benefit of capturing your consumers before they have a chance to look at the competition is one that can put you over the edge. Selling cars online provides consumers with the confidence that they understand what car they are getting and who they are buying it from. It also helps that you have a physical store they can stop by if they ever need further assistance, but it all begins online.

The Best Places to List Cars Online

Including all your inventory within your website is always a must-do, but that should not be the only place your list of cars should reside in. There are a plethora of online sites that allow dealerships to promote and even sell. Cars.com is one of the leading providers of automotive pricing and research tools, with an estimated 15.5 million unique site visitors each month. Other highly respective websites include autotrader.com and relycars.com, to name a few. Although some dealerships may not be able to sell their newest models online, it can still be a very effective tactic to move out used or older model cars.

This is the Time to Experiment

The introduction of online car retailers is relatively new to both the public and dealerships. Websites have existed for many years, but they have never been anything more than a place to find their location and number. We are living in what many call the shift. This shift relates to moving away from traditional selling tactics and even the process of purchasing a car to a more digital sense. What makes this the perfect time for car dealerships to begin taking a risk is that we are still within the shift. You can still incorporate traditional methods but have the ability to begin testing on your digital platforms as well. Find out what works now before it’s too late.

Streamline the Customer Experience

The most important thing within any business is the quality of your customer experience. This is especially important in the world of car dealerships as consumers often have multiple options spanning beyond your city limits. Providing the customer a more streamlined way of doing things through an outline platform can really place you above and beyond the competition. Features such as test-drive appointments and even signing most of the paperwork online are some of the features being sought-after by today’s consumer.

Data Collection Creates Sales

You might have heard this before, but data will no doubt be the most valuable thing a company will hold in the future. Therefore, car dealerships must begin taking their business onto the web. Data collection does not mean using the personal information of a customer, but their tendencies. How does this help you? When you receive this information, you can then re-target similar consumers. Similar consumers who have purchased from you in the past equals more sales. 

Evolving consumer preferences and the introduction of a more digital market are quickly changing the way many retailers run their day to day operations. As a car dealership owner or supervisor, you are not immune to these changes. If you want to succeed, you need to make a good website for your dealership. To lay a strong foundation for this change, simply adhere to the list above.

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