As an automotive software business, we are obviously keen to see the growth of digital tools within the dealership. We brought the use of video to the industry in 2012 with the launch of AudiCam. But video in the workshop is not the only part of the sales and service processes that are being revolutionised by software and digital solutions.
I recently took part in a webinar hosted by our partner Keyloop to discuss digitalisation. I was joined by other well known providers from the industry and we covered a variety of topics around the software and tools available to dealerships. My key takeaway was that there is still confusion and reluctance from many dealerships to use digital resources but a proven hunger from consumers to engage more digitally, which is why I wanted to write something to share some of my insight on how choosing the correct digital tool and having digital processes in place was key.
With nearly 40 years in the industry, in a retail setting and now as a supplier I have witnessed huge changes for the dealership in terms of digitalisation.
I talk a lot about digitalisation and powering up the customer in retail and how it has evolved, outside of automotive, we all know what I mean, self checkouts, online shopping, even your prescriptions, in fact pretty much everything can be done digitally now.
The automotive industry has changed and adopted this new digital approach to retail but maybe not to the same speed as general high street retail.
A dealership needs to think about the customer journey and what staff are doing for customers and consider if any of these processes can be completed by the customer from where they want and when they want.
But it is important to do it in the right time scale suited to your business. Personally, I think you should not go digital until you can define the exact process in an analogue basis. It is too easy to go straight to digital and miss some key elements to the process you are trying to digitalise. It becomes very difficult to critic something you have created, or your team have, so once you have developed something, get someone else to get you feedback on it.
For dealerships there are a wealth of options on the market for software, video, DMS, eVHC etc and it can be very intimidating to know what your best option is when starting a new digital journey.
My view is to look at all your solutions with the customers eyes only, too many solutions are considered from the dealership’s eyes, short cutting processes that short-change the customer experience will be very costly and will be unmeasured losses. An example is many groups measure sell up percentage rates…. think about measuring the pounds of revenue you are missing and that will focus the mind.
Also work with an agile digital provider who works around your process and enhances it rather than buying a mass-produced product that doesn’t quite deliver on what you actually want.
Digital tools in the dealership will certainly help you get ahead and grow your business. There are a lot of resources available from industry magazines and events to aid your research.
Digitalisation is key, in summary to do it well, think about the customer’s needs, pace your project to suit your business and be agile.
To watch the Keyloop webinar on “Navigating the Retailing Challenges of Consumer Demand for Digital Experiences” click here.