Ask The Expert May 2013

wendi-venableWendi Venable is the President of Sales for DriveBuyMarketing and answers this month’s question.

We are getting more smartphone shoppers on our dealership lot, especially in off hours. How can we create opportunities to connect with them?

 Trust and credibility is what shoppers are looking for when they muster up the courage to venture out to your dealership. They have conducted hours of online research 86% of the time, are loaded with more information about you and your competitions inventory than most of your sales people are and 69% of the time are visiting you totally unannounced.

By the time the shopper makes it to your store they are the closest to buying a car they are going to get but ironically you could find yourself the furthest from earning their business with a slip of a number or twist of a term. Their on lot experience needs to be an extension of their Internet experience, your web promotion is the main reason they are at your store.

Remember these are tech savvy shoppers so you need to extend their digital shopping experience. One way to do that is by delivering real time accurate vehicle information via their mobile devices while supporting, encouraging and respecting their choice to not engage your team members at this stage.

Here is how to connect with these smart device shoppers:

1)      Provide the ability to access immediate vehicle information using vehicle specific QRCodes and/or SMS text numbers/codes. Using this marketing technology you can provide lot shoppers real time accurate vehicle information that aligns with what their hours of Internet research – instant credibility.

2)      Encourage show rooming going as far as to show shoppers how to do it! Tell them to let you know if they find a competitive offer elsewhere so you can have the opportunity to match it. Nothing builds trust faster than showing someone something new which will help make a good decision or save money.

3)      Train your sales people how to approach these shoppers during hours. Brief introduction and then a brief overview of how to use their mobile device to browse. Also it is critical to know what you are going to say when you follow up with a lot shopper who engaged and how to follow up with them when they have visited and engaged after hours.

Clear communication and a commitment to the expectation you set with consumers will quickly build the credibility and trust they need to make the buying decision.

Wendi Venable is the President of Sales for DriveBuyMarketing. but has worked in Sales, Marketing and Training for HireRite, Inc. HigherGear and Wonderlic.  DriveBuyMarketing is a lot merchandising solution for dealers utilizing digital technology and QR codes to engage smartphone lot shoppers.  Their website is DriveBuyMarketing and Wendi can be reached at 847-462-0788