Earlier this month, I attended the Internet Sales 20 Group in Atlantic City, where I hosted a really interesting and engaging session. Sean Bradley and his team at Dealer Synergy have been putting these 20 Groups on for a decade now, and the combination of information with interactive work sessions are the best in the industry. There’s another Internet Sales 20 Group coming up in Boston in September. If you’ve ever thought about attending, I would highly recommend doing so due to the level of learning and highly relevant topics being addressed.
At this past 20 Group, there was a lot of talk about the rapid consumer migration from desktop computers to mobile devices when it comes to researching and – more importantly – buying a car. I focused my session on these trends, and shared information from our CarsDirect customer surveys that ask consumers about their research habits and buying experience (see this month’s article for more information on this data).
It’s very clear that eyes are wide open about the shift to mobile – we’re all aware it’s happening, but there is still much to learn and think through. One item that really stood out was when I asked attendees about how the mobile lead is handled at their dealership, and was there a different process in place to interact with mobile prospects. Only one dealer out of 200 attendees said that they have a customized process around handling the more urgent mobile consumer who is ready to buy right now. One!
The data tells us that one-third of mobile inquiries are either buying this weekend, on their way to a dealership right now, or actually at a dealership shopping. So there is a clear need to identify which customers (leads, texts, inquiries, etc.) are coming from a mobile device so you can jump on them with more urgency. The auto consumer is increasingly texting rather than calling, and is certainly rapidly moving further away from filling out a full lead form on the web. Times have changed.
We’ve been watching these changes in consumer behavior closely here at CarsDirect, and have been hard at work developing products that make it easier to identify and interact with mobile consumers. We can now connect you at the dealership with the consumer via text message, and pass the customer’s phone number and name as a lead directly into your CRM. We’ve also innovated further to reach the customer in the instant they are shopping, using window decals that encourage customers to text a number for more information on the vehicle they are physically looking at. Additionally, we’re making sure that you’re connecting with consumers on their mobile device of choice by offering out-of-the-box mobile dealer sites that render correctly on all mobile devices. The results so far have been astounding, proving that these innovative new mobile-focused products can give you the advantage to sell more cars by interacting with more buyers right when they are ready to buy.
Ask us about this newest suite of products, called Mobile Connect. We’ll show you how you can connect with and track the mobile customer, giving you unrivaled visibility into your advertising efficacy using our one-of-a-kind proprietary mobile text and mobile website tools.
If you have any questions about these new products or the shift to mobile in general, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.
VP Sales, CarsDirect