It may seem surprising with all the methods of communication available, but the most frequent and meaningful interaction with your prospects and active customers is still a phone call. Yet, it remains an experience most customers rate as poor.
The great news is that because of this failure, you can move quickly ahead of your competition by recognizing and correcting everything about your customer’s experience on the phone. This is the time to shine.
For your consideration:
- Time is indeed the new currency- Amazon is moving to same day delivery because 2 days is no longer fast enough
- 53% of people using a mobile search will abandon the search at 3 seconds of load time
- The super-computer we all carry in our pocket requires that we provide speedy and frictionless experiences
- The phone script is dead, finally
- Transparency sells cars and service
- The 800 number is over. Let it go, along with your flip phone (local area code tracking provides all the benefits, allows improved search and targeted marketing, plus customer-initiated texting)
Now is a great time to take advantage of the sector of the market place that has been profitable for decades doing the things they always have. Oddly, change comes slowly to successful businesses. To increase the distance between you and your competition there are a few very basic considerations that rise to the top.
You are already likely to be morphing your business from the days of the adversarial engagement between seller and buyer. Most likely you have spent great energy on your physical presentation in your showroom and service lane. Your marketing is expected to be moving away from the inflatable Gorilla on the roof; raising the hoods on the front line for messages like sale, misleading payment promotions, and small print following outright prevarication in print and digital marketing, and the 200 words per minute disclaimer in your broadcast media.
Dealers have begun to evolve but improving your customer experience in other areas makes a poor phone experience even more damaging. Our caller’s experience needs to be totally re-thought and revamped your caller’s experience from the first ring!
In a recent 2 Million Call Study (human-summarized calls)
- 33% of all callers to automotive dealerships asking for sales are not able to reach a sales rep to help them
- 28% of all Service Calls never reach a Service agent
- The average time to speak to a human is 41 Seconds
- 50% of the callers that do reach Sales never choose to provide their contact information
- Half of all calls sent to Voice Mail hang up
- 18% of all Service Calls are the dreaded status update call…. ’Is my car ready?’
Imagine the financial impact of these statistics
- Ad Spend waste
- Customer Loyalty/Retention
- Sales and Service suffer from underperformance of the ‘other’
- 1 lost sale creates a market share gap of 2 between you and your competition
Like every improvement you have made to date, this is about Process and People. And it turns out to actually be a bit of rocket science after all.
The hope is that you will focus on what may be the most important improvement you can make in your business and do what it takes to distance the gap between the innovators and the laggers.
You have always fixed what you have measured.
“Impatience, immediate action, instant gratification, even some impulsiveness—these are just a handful of descriptors for behavior today. We have all been empowered and emboldened by information. With our phones acting as supercomputers in our pockets, we can find, learn, do, and buy whenever the need arises—or the whim strikes.
This ability to get things done in the moment—paired with the fact that brands are getting better at delivering speedy, frictionless mobile experiences—is driving expectations higher than ever.”
You can learn more about how to improve your caller’s experience by attending Chip King’s session: Decrease the Gap Between the Automotive Innovators & Laggers on the Phone at Digital Dealer 24 (April 10-12th in Orlando, FL).
Author: Chip King
Robert “Chip” King spent his career in automotive retailing from 1977 to 2008. Holding every position in variable operations, including General Manager and Dealer Principal, Chip has had a special focus on the “customer experience” throughout. Chip is highly sought-after for many of the auto industry’s biggest and best dealer conferences because of his subject matter expertise. Chip is passionate about sharing his expertise on how to correct profit leaks in the auto dealership phone process.