How Can our Dealership More Fully Utilize our CRM Software?

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By Joe Webb

I firmly believe that a well-utilized CRM is the most valu­able piece of tech­nol­ogy in a deal­er­ship. Some deal­ers bite off more than they can chew, while many oth­ers sim­ply don’t want to con­sume it as much as they should, regard­less of how healthy it is for them.

The Cus­tomer Rela­tion­ship Man­age­ment (CRM) tools of today serve count­less needs, but more­over, must serve count­less mas­ters. While every sin­gle employee in your deal­er­ship should be well-versed and actively using the cho­sen CRM, every sin­gle dif­fer­ent posi­tion at your store should be using it dif­fer­ently. Some posi­tions require using it to the Nth degree, while oth­ers can use it in a much more basic role. But it must be used.

A good CRM should be like a selec­tion of fruits. Here are the ways a CRM should be devoured by your team based on their role:

  • Inter­net Director/eCommerce Direc­tor – For them, the CRM must be like an Edi­ble Arrange­ment. Edi­ble Arrange­ments are mas­sively con­structed bou­quets of fruit bas­kets, whit­tled into extra­or­di­nary shapes. They must under­stand it three dimen­sion­ally. It must be able to be viewed in pieces, under­stood, crafted, and dined on as if it were art.
  • Deal­er­ship Owner/General Man­ager: For an owner or GM, the store’s CRM should be a Fruit Cup. They are look­ing at macro-level infor­ma­tion and will likely not need the more gran­u­lar report­ing approach. They can fill up eas­ily on CRM and don’t need a lot of it to make deci­sions. After all, it is the Inter­net Direc­tor likely send­ing them over small pieces of fruits to look at anyway.
  • Sales Man­agers: A great Sales Man­ager should be look­ing at a CRM as if it were a fruit salad. They need to be able to have an assort­ment of reports, be able to dive into all the pretty col­ors, sam­ple many dif­fer­ent pieces, and enjoy a menagerie of fla­vors. A great sales man­ager can pick apart the CRM, find the most impor­tant pieces, and use them to grow the sales numbers.
  • Sales­peo­ple: For the aver­age sales­per­son, a CRM should be no more than a slice of water­melon. Many don’t want to use it, but it needs to be sim­ple, stream­lined, and one fla­vor. They must know how to go in, exe­cute their basic tasks, leav­ing notes behind, and eat­ing it the same way con­sis­tently over and over and over. They don’t need to know all the inner-workings of mul­ti­ple fruit bas­kets. They just need to be taught the right way to eat it every time. Sure, there will be some things they don’t like or under­stand, but they will just have to learn to spit out the seeds and keep eat­ing, because it is their job and we don’t ask enough of sales­peo­ple as is.

Joe Webb is an auto­mo­tive eCom­merce Con­sul­tant and the owner of Deal­er­Knows. This arti­cle orig­i­nally appeared on Joe’s Deal­er­Knows Blog.

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