The internet has brought the car business into an age of disloyalty. We can do everything we can to keep our customers happy in sales and service, but even our happiest customers have access to the internet and they’re willing to use it.
As long as your employees do a great job of setting up the dealership for maintaining sales customers and keeping service customers, you should have first shot at earning their future business. Unfortunately, customers are often impatient and the first shot doesn’t always go very far.
This is where 24-hour chat comes into play. A story we’ve told before that holds true for the majority of dealers is the woman who needed to drop her car off for service in the morning. She woke up early, hit her dealership’s website, and went to service. The store was closed and the chat showed offline, so she had no way to contact them to get details about dropping her Jeep off, so she went to another Jeep dealer’s website. They had 24-hour chat and informed her that she could drop off the car at 7am and would have plenty of time to get to work.
The first dealership she visited online also opened at 7am and could have handled her business just fine, but nobody was there to reassure her. Chat offers a way for your website visitors to have basic questions answered in real time. For both sales and service, it’s a way that can separate your dealership from the competition by being always on when your customers have needs. The concept that “real” customers only visit your website during business hours is silly. Thanks to the internet, shopping happens at all hours of the morning, day, and night, and to be offline is an easy way to miss potential sales.
This is the reason that we offer both managed and “backup” chat for our clients. Some dealers want us to handle everything. Others want us to be there when they’re not, whether it’s late at night or during lunch. Chat is the ideal way to be there in real time regardless of when people are visiting your website.
If you have doubts about whether or not people are visiting your website at night, just take a look at your analytics. You’ll see that the traffic numbers go down at night, but they definitely don’t die. People shop when they want to shop. They look for service late at night or early in the morning when they’re preparing for their workday. Your chat presence can be the protective shield you need to make sure that you don’t miss out on business like the Jeep dealer we discussed above.