Cut the fluff. We might be shutting down again.
This time, rather than lamenting, we focus on preparation. In the end, if everything is able to stay open, we’re only that much more prepared to do business.
Online is King
With the onset of the pandemic in the spring, an irreversible shift occurred. From now until forever, you can’t ignore the necessity of a heavy online presence. Up until the shut down, some smaller dealerships were able to skate by with pen and paper.
Maybe you were still doing paper we-owes, or keeping a file cabinet. Even mid-sized stores were okay without a high-end website, as long as your inventory was up-to-date. Those days left us like a sudden breakup without closure. There’s no going back.
Preparation is Queen
Making sure your dealership is fully operational online is top priority. In 2020, you’ve got to be able to execute a full sales process online and in person, simultaneously. You’ve got some customers that are comfortable walking in and others that haven’t left their homes in months. That’s just for today. Next month, who knows?
When it comes to online car sales, put in the effort to ensure a user-friendly site and the ability to make every sale count. Profit margins are more important than ever. You’ve got to be able to sell accessories online with ease; high visibility, attractive options, and clear information.
Knight the Service Drive
Some dealerships were pleasantly surprised with their sales during the shut down. E-commerce numbers soared to new heights in the automotive industry and beyond. While other departments suffered.
The service department sat dormant in many stores, despite car sales. Customers who bought online, or even ventured out for a car purchase, weren’t willing to do the same for routine services. Oil changes and tire rotations took a major backseat while Americans largely worked from home. Learning from experience is important. Now is the time to focus on how you can keep the service department healthy should history repeat itself.
Promote service appointments by leading in with free oil changes or a routine maintenance package. A great lead-in product makes for a smooth transition from the car sale to the accessory presentation. Deeply discount maintenance by stipulating that it must be used within a specified time frame. Once your customer comes in for service, upsell additional accessories. A digital accessory software, like Insignia’s interface, is an engaging and profitable way to fill your customer’s down time.
Don’t wait to see what happens. Plan ahead so you can keep moving forward no matter what life (or a pandemic) throws at you.