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What Shoppers Want: Is Your Brand Appealing?

Before they even set foot onto your lot, consumers are busy—busy shopping around for the dealership that can best meet their needs, accommodate their vehicle requirements, and provide the best service.  Chances are, you’re not the only dealership they’re looking at during their online search, so in order to gain their business, you’ll need to be the one that stands out as the best.

How to Boost Your Brand

The varying needs of consumers dictate how your brand is seen in the marketplace, and that means you’ll need to know what shoppers are looking for in order to be a leader in the industry.  So what are today’s shoppers looking for?  Studies have shown that today’s shoppers are smart, educated, and online-driven.  Check out some of the stats that will help you when it comes to honing your dealership’s brand to meet their needs:

  • 75% of drivers polled in a recent Accenture survey say they would like to conduct the entire car-buying experience online. While your dealership may not be at this point, it’s important to keep this in mind and offer as many viable convenience alternatives to shoppers as possible.  Be sure your website and online platforms are easy to access and offer quick, mobile-friendly solutions.  Consider offering the option of filling out financial forms, giving quotes, and completing negotiations online to add to the convenience factor shoppers are seeking.
  • 62% of shoppers initiate their car-buying experiences online, including consulting social media channels before coming into your dealership. A survey of 10,000 consumers over eight major countries found 80% of driverslooking to buy new vehicles are using digital technology to research their buying preferences. To meet consumer needs, ensure your dealership offers quality educational content and is available on multiple platforms to answer questions and respond to shopper inquiries.
  • U.S. car-buyers state comparison sites are the most useful, with online reviews and vehicle make and model comparisons being important before shopping in-person on the lot. It’s important your dealership maintain an easy-to-use comparison site that’s compatible across devices so a wide consumer audience has access to your content.  Even while on the lot, shoppers will access comparison information via their mobile devices.

Offer Transparency

Be sure your online platforms offer brand transparency when it comes to vehicle pricing, repairs, and maintenance timelines.  The more open you can be with consumers, the easier it will be to create an atmosphere of brand trust and loyalty that lasts.

Offer Knowledge

Consumers are online researching, so provide content that educates and inspires them to read more.  When online shoppers read, share, and even comment on your posts, you’re creating dialogue and forming a relationship with them that goes beyond simply selling.

Meet Shopper Challenges

Today’s consumers are more educated than ever before, so they’ll be throwing out tougher questions for your sales professionals.  Ensure your employees are prepared to interact with consumers at a higher level and answer the tougher questions. It’s a great idea to look into technology like mobile apps that can quickly and easily pull up vehicle comparisons; these are the tools that will help your professionals succeed when working with knowledgeable, fast-paced customers.

Consumers are not only shopping for vehicles; they are shopping for brands.  So be sure your brand outshines the rest by meeting the challenges today’s customers put forth in the marketplace.  Ensure your professionals stay at the top of their game, remain ready to interact and answer questions, and offer as much knowledge and transparency as possible.  Shoppers will appreciate it when they see a brand that’s meeting them where they are shopping and offering the information they need.

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