This month, I’d like to share here about a new competitive advantage that takes vehicle merchandising and value-building to a new level of customer engagement.
That is a hearty promise. Yet, dealers by the hundreds are grasping for the advantage. Every dealer understands vehicle merchandising, the practice of drawing shopper eyeballs to the cars they want to sell. Merchandising varies from window stickers and balloons to mechanical systems that lift, spin or tilt vehicles to make them notable standouts.
Traffic-building efforts like these are well and good. Still, more compelling and transparent vehicle merchandising begins when you acquire a vehicle and make improvements along the journey to the physical and virtual sales lot meaningful to buyers.
Full disclosure and transparency here mean sharing with customers exactly how your dealership reconditioned the vehicle they are considering. Solutions such as digital vehicle presentation tools make the value-building work of reconditioning viewable by shoppers anywhere, anytime.
This full-circle transparency simultaneously helps dealers (and their salespeople) demonstrate and build value in the cars made ready for sale through their reconditioning process.
Full disclosure brings transparency and more profound knowledge about your cars to customers. When you put access to such details under their control, you let the vehicle tell its story of transformation through reconditioning into a safe, appealing and value-added car worth serious purchase consideration.
When sales staff or online presentation tools can accurately and authoritatively show prospects the value in your cars due to the reconditioning care, detail and, if you want to, the costs you invested in making their car stand out, you create for your dealership a pivotal sales edge. Next to vehicle history reports, documents highlighting the value-add that reconditioning brings to the car are a top evaluation process customers consider before buying.
The rich, VIN-specific data an automated reconditioning system can capture on each car is inert until pulled from the system and displayed — merchandised — for customers. Please don’t ask them to ask you for this information; instead, put it front-and-center on screen as they review your inventory online. Let your cars’ compelling reconditioning stories sell them for you.
Digital vehicle presentation or merchandising is part-and-parcel of a dealership’s speed-to-sale mission. Supported by three to five days in recon and time to line performance speeds through recon steps, a dealer gains at least two competitive advantages:
• Cars get sale-ready faster, reducing holding cost depreciation overhead and improving turn cycles, so cars sell more quickly at higher margins, and,
• Reconditioning merchandising details complete online marketing. These include at-home access to the vehicle’s history reports, warranty information, original MSRP documentation and trim-complete vehicle display pages. Your vehicles’ stories are told in compelling detail, answering questions for customers and your sales team, dashing off speed to sale with unique confidence, trust and added value.
As the power of first-influence gains traction in the evolving automotive retail market, new disruptive technology drivers are changing how fixed and variable operations harmonize to meet and deliver more competitive customer-buying criteria.