3 Things Parts Managers Should Know About Selling Online

Posted by Insignia Group on Jul 13, 2022 12:38:08 PM


PM Online Selling blog header

Consumers Want to Connect

The world is increasingly impersonal, with self-checkout, automated answering services, social media, and online shopping. It would be easy to assume consumers don’t care about a personal touch anymore. It turns out that’s not true. 

An article from McKinsey & Co. states, “The Next in Personalization 2021 Report reveals that companies who excel at demonstrating customer intimacy generate faster rates of revenue growth than their peers. And the closer organizations get to the consumer, the bigger the gains.”

What does that mean for selling online? Here are a few things you can try:

  • Connect with your customer with a welcome video. 
  • Include parts staff directory with a fun fact and photo about each to make them memorable.
  • Utilize live chat with a person, not a bot!
  • Show accessories on the vehicle for better understanding and visualization. 
  • Send personal follow-ups and thank you messages.

You Don't Need the Whole Parts Department

Use the team’s individual strengths. Chances are, one person can handle the marketing and customer-facing aspect (the more technology-focused), while another is responsible for pulling and packing orders. And, if you’re in a position that requires you to be more tech-savvy (and you’re not comfortable with it), reach out to the support team of the software you use to get personal training. It will cut down on learning time and give you a better understanding of how everything works—no need to worry about the stress of change.

Particularly, at first, there’s no need to pull teeth. Managing orders and follow-ups shouldn’t be complicated when you have the right software. If it is, you may be using the wrong system. 

Once you get to a point where you need more than one person handling orders, congratulations! Your online parts business has grown, and you can pull someone else in to learn the ropes. 

It's Comprehensive

Sometimes, we hear statistics about online sales and think it’s like fishing in an aquarium. It’s important to remember that we’re talking about the internet, which is an endless black hole. Selling parts online requires a strategy like anything else. That includes marketing, the right eCommerce solution, structure, tenacity, and time. 

Parts managers shouldn’t feel overwhelmed with needing to learn back-end technology or become marketing gurus. What you need are goals, outsourcing, and 3 to 6 months to get acclimated to the new process. 

Work with your marketing team or a third-party source to run ads, optimize your website with SEO, and engage on social media. You can help move it forward by telling your existing customers about your new parts web store face to face, via email blasts, texts, or Facebook videos. 

A digital retailer that works for your needs is vital. The right digital retailer will integrate with your existing platforms so you can sell accessories through your dealership site, connect with customers via live chat, maintain inventory, and more from one location. A scattered approach with multiple platforms is a great way to make a mess.

Getting anything off the ground takes time, even when dealing with an army of online shoppers ready to *add to cart*. Be consistent in your approach, and don’t judge success until it’s been six months. Then, adjust as needed.

Just keep chipping away. 


How Insignia Group Can Help:

Insignia Group is the leading provider of digital accessory selling systems nationwide—and the only platform that offers visual accessory configuration, greatly enhancing the user experience and therefore driving more sales. Our customizable catalog and order processing system integrate with multiple well-known digital retailers to make your life easier. 

For over a decade, Insignia Group has helped parts departments increase their revenue by selling accessories at the point of sale. Our seamless, digital communication will unify sales, parts, and services on accessory orders. You’ll never have to worry about sales misquoting pricing, or losing a We-Owe. With the Insignia system, you can update pricing, labor, and availability, all while communicating any updates to the entire dealership. 

Let our industry experts consult with your management team to create a process, and then train your staff to maximize potential! Schedule a demo today.

Topics: Dealership, success, parts manager, parts department