Is Your Dealership Prepared for 2015?

by · January 11, 2015

Happy New Year 2015

And so we begin

A new year,

Hello 2015!


What do we have to show for the year prior, and

More importantly

What do we have to look forward to in the year to come?




Earlier in the year

ADP formed the spinoff CDK Global.

A merging of three ADP divisions – Dealer Services, Cobalt Digital Marketing, and Kerridge Computer Systems,

The new brand looks great

And it gives this business a fresh start.


What effect will this have on the industry?


Whether or not this invigorates the dealer space

I do not know, however

What does invigorate the dealer space

Is that there are many terrific companies

In this space, from which

Dealers can choose.


When it comes to your integrated marketing needs.

It’s hard to go wrong.


When I think back to the way things were 10 years ago

I get excited, knowing all

The amazing capabilities dealers have today

When it comes to representing their dealerships on the Web.




For the last several years

We have been told that content is king,

But really

Content is more like your army.


Your website is your most important (digital) asset.

Your website should rock!

Your website should be mobile (or responsive or adaptive, whatever).

Your website should be engaging.

Your website should create opportunities.


Dare I say that the days of websites are numbered

(A topic for an entirely different post)

But for the time being, treat your website like the Queen that it is.


Make sure it is accessible and user friendly in all formats

Make sure search engines like it, and

Make sure it engages visitors and creates a bounty of opportunities.




The BEST way

To enhance the effectiveness of your website

Is to personalize the customer experience,

And while there are different ways of doing this

Live Chat has proven to be

One of the better ways to personalize.


With effectively managed live chat engagement

Dealers are able to reduce the number of missed opportunities

That continue to effect dealership websites today

While also improving customer service.


In 2014

We probably saw more dealers embrace live chat technology

Than just about any other tool or function, but

Simply installing live chat on your website

Does not in-and-of-itself work like a magic pill.

The engagement it makes possible with customers is what is

Key to your success.


In my estimate, about half of franchise auto dealers

Have live chat on their sites right now.

Of those that do however, many miss the mark.

Chat consoles continue to be unmanned and visitors ignored

Prohibitive interfaces turn away visitors, and

Poorly managed conversations result in lost opportunities.


As websites become more and more personal for visitors,

Engaging with these visitors will become increasingly more important as well.


Be sure not to get left behind in 2015

Have a killer Live Chat Engagement Strategy!




Speaking of kings, how about Big Data?

While the term “big data” is new, the idea is not

Think of big data more like consumer insights (that’s what Google calls it),

A valuable currency in the form of zeros and ones, bits and bytes.


The term big data implies intelligence and understanding of consumer information

Gathered through relatively new (technological) ways.

But make no mistake about it, while big data is only a term

The intelligence is pivotal.


As an auto dealer

You have access to tremendous information, and

You should take advantage of that

If you aren’t, then consider this your queue,

Educate yourself and take action.

If you are, then well, more power to you.


Dataium is probably the most known, if not only

True Big Data supplier dedicated to automotive.

Dataium’s tentacles are in thousands of places

Affecting the shopper experience in significant ways.


Big Data is the new king and you won’t survive without it much longer.




At the JD Power Automotive Internet Roundtable in 2011,

A big message there was that you have to think mobile.

Three years later, the mobile component no doubt is crucial

All consumers, you included, are spending more and more time

On their/our mobile devices.


Knowing this, and knowing that your core objective is

Engagement that leads to opportunity

Engagement therefore must begin with mobile in mind and

Be integrated deep into your sales and marketing processes.

From text messaging to email to social media to live chat and telephone calls

All these things can and typically are

Performed on a smartphone.




The Internet-age has matured and

Auto shoppers are well equipped

The experience is mobile.

The experience is intelligent.

The experience is personal.


Is your dealership prepared for 2015?


Producer and Host of the AutoConverse Future Mobility & Connectivity Podcast, Ryan began working in the automotive industry in 2001, establishing his roots in online vehicle merchandising before expanding into digital marketing and now multi media for Automotive B2B. You can connect with Ryan on LinkedIn.