How are Smartphones Affecting Your Car Dealership?

08/28/2017 06:53 pm | Posted by Admin

It may seem like the question of how smartphones affect car sales is splitting hairs. It's the internet that has provided so much transparency into the buying process, so what does it matter exactly how customers access all that information? Well, the answer is that it affects things quite a bit, especially if you own a car dealership. See what's going on in the lives of customers before they even set foot on a lot. 

Curiosity Meets Immediacy 

A Connected Consumer Survey, administered in part by Google, showed that a full 86% of auto buyers have smartphones, and close to 70% of those auto buyers use their phone as their primary way to access the internet (for personal use.) Marketing experts have found that auto buyers usually start their search with these micro moments of curiosity about the kinds of cars available in their area. People will pull out their phone while they're waiting in line or when they're trying to take a mental break at work. These are pivotal times where they start looking at reviews and ratings before narrowing down their choices. It may start as a way to pass the time, but this is a time for car dealerships to start hooking customers into their brand. Almost 60% of people who bought a car from a dealership had no prior connection to that dealership, so it's a huge opportunity for owners to step in and make themselves known. 

Mobile Matters 

If you don't have a mobile website or app, it may be time to invest in one. Today the name of the game is Search Engine Optimization, which is what determines when and where your dealership name pops up to mobile users. If you want more visibility, you have to make your online content as accessible as it possibly can be. That means that those with Androids and iPhones can see all of your information regardless of their operating system or network speed. Navigation on a mobile phone should be intuitive, so customers aren't frustrated when trying to find your inventory or contact information. These tips are a good start, but they're really only the bare minimum for auto dealerships. Today, consumers in the market for a new car expect a lot more before they actually get in their vehicle to find a new one.

Video Is King

All car dealerships need to be focused on creating (and updating) excellent content for their website. Whether that's words, video, or art, customers are paying attention to how professional and enticing it all looks. According to the Connected Consumer Survey, about 80% of all auto buyers are watching videos of cars, and these videos end up having big implications for those who make them. Around 35% of people will visit a dealership's website after seeing a well-placed video. Content can also be altered for the dealership's ideal customers. For example, first-time buyers put a heavier emphasis on space and design that repeat buyers do. This can help give dealers an idea of what to emphasize in their content if they're trying to attract more first-time buyers. 

Summary

The stats tell a clear story about how pivotal smartphones are during the buying process. Owners should be ready to do their part by adopting and pushing new technology to their customers. From social media to mobile apps, engaging customers can make a positive impression on the bottom line of any dealership. 

Written by Marcin Migdal - LinkedIn  / Website / Huff

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