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Strategies for Success: Four Opportunities Now and in the Future

by Lindsay Lauck
on April 22, 2020

Dealers are all facing unique challenges with as many as 80% seeking federal financial assistance according to a recent Cox Auto survey¹. To help establish business continuity and identify key areas of opportunity for our partners, Dealertrack DMS Performance Manager, Gary Shirley, recently hosted a webinar series. The recording of the series is available here. Below are the four areas where dealers can find opportunities for immediate success, as well as establish long-term growth potential for the new business environment.

Identify Necessary Changes for Your Sales and Fixed Ops Departments

Though current social distancing restrictions are widespread, the general public falls into a spectrum of low-to-high risk groups. This means that some portion of the public will be ready to return to your dealership sooner, rather than later, and you’ll want to be ready to serve as many buyers and shoppers as possible. High-risk groups will also return to your dealership at a later date and the more options you’ve put in place for them to do so safely—with remote shopping, safe service procedures, etc.—the better.

  • Dealerships should consider offering incentives to attract buyers now.
  • Consumers will need time to grow comfortable to get back out there. Business likely won’t return to normal on May 1st.
  • Is your dealership’s Fixed Ops department prepared to work in this capacity if this situation becomes an annual event?
  • Watch the full webinar.

Build Safety Strategies That Last

The measure of uncertainty with social distancing and economic restrictions and regulations has given dealerships a strange timeline. Yet, even if businesses opened up “as normal” on May first, the general public would likely be hesitant to rush into your store. There are numerous possibilities that the risk of an annual infection or quarantine are likely, that lockdowns will recur, or that the economic impact will be bigger than we estimate. The safety strategies your dealership learns today are valuable and should not be forgotten.

  • One out of five dealers surveyed are offering mobile service check-in¹. Dealers need to adjust their offerings to accommodate the desires of the public.
  • Is your COVID-19 policy prominent on your website? Make sure shoppers can find it easily.
  • If your store has new hours, are they easy to find? Have you updated your new hours on Google as well as your website?
  • Watch the full webinar.
Track Your Inventory and Cash Assets

This is a critical time for dealers to optimize every dollar spent and every dollar earned. Dealers must leverage their technology tools and processes to maximize their profit potential.

  • Do a CRM check. If ever there was a time for your CRM tool to go to work for you, this is it.
  • Ensure your Lead Process is updated. Adjust the way you have traditionally followed up on your clients. People may have more time on their hands and they want to hear back from you.
  • Give your sales people the right path to work from. When was the last time you updated your talk tracks and processes? Make sure your team is adjusting their process.
  • Sales Managers must monitor Lead Funnel at every step. What are the bottlenecks?
  • Watch the full webinar.
Be Flexible!

As Gary notes, our current conditions are highly volatile with the situation changing day-to-day. As such, dealers must be agile and flexible. The most important thing to keep in mind is that while this situation is not permanent, many of the changes our industry is making are likely to stick around.

  • Two out of three shoppers are more likely to buy a car if the process is 100% online¹.
  • Your website is now your virtual showroom! After this is over, it needs to remain this way.
  • Is your dealership’s online inventory up-to-date? Buyers are checking.
  • Are you prepared to utilize every technology to empower your buyers and your shoppers such as FaceTime, Skype, WhatsApp, Messenger, etc., to provide virtual test drives?
  • Watch the full webinar.

¹April 11 Cox Automotive Dealership Survey.

HELPING OUR CLIENTS MAINTAIN BUSINESS CONTINUITY IS A TOP PRIORITY. VISIT OUR BUSINESS CONTINUITY TOOLS & RESOURCES CENTER FOR MORE.

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