Tips to Implement New Technology

Technology plays an ever-increasing role in automotive retailing. Database mining, digital marketing, mobile marketing, and click-to-chat are some of the newer technology solutions that are available today to help dealerships reach, attract, and retain more customers. However, it’s important to remember that technology on its own isn’t the deciding factor for whether customers buy from you or not. Most dealers will agree that their employees – and not technology – are the main reason they gain a new customer… or lose one.

Consider these scenarios:

  • A prospect comes in after seeing your Web or newspaper advertisement, but quickly leaves because the he or she never was greeted.
  • A browser clicks on the “Chat” button on your website to learn more about a vehicle. After several text exchanges, the consumer signs off without making an appointment because the salesperson was not trained in communication skills and protocol.

Before investing in new technology, here are three tips to help ensure that your investment pays off for your dealership.

  1.  Analyze your processes. Examine the processes used in your dealership to determine how they may be impacted by the new technology you are considering. You may need to retune your procedures so your dealership is positioned to obtain maximum value from your technology investment.
  2.  Prepare your employees. Make sure you schedule time to train your employees to use the new tool. This is critical! If you aren’t able to train your team, explore hiring a professional service.
  3.  Monitor and be prepared to adjust. Once the technology is implemented, monitor how it is working. Are your employees using it fully? Is it positively impacting your operations? If you answer no to either of these questions, adjustments are in order.

Implementing new technology is a waste of money if you don’t prepare. Following these steps will help make sure that your technology investments bring in a consistent return for your dealership.

(Excerpted from Dealer Digest Daily, August 22, 2011)