The Future of Car Retailing: The ‘Click and Mortar’ Dealership

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Retail has evolved in recent years to be more efficient and less costly, and now this change is coming to the auto industry. The auto retail experience has been less than stellar with about 1 percent of customers being pleases with the customer experience. This is because buying a car requires a great deal of moving around, inspection, paperwork, and hidden fees and not a lot of customer service, easy delivery, and arranged pickup.

The current model for auto retail involves brick-and-mortar stores and dealerships that customers go to inspect and buy vehicles, and several online auctioneers that still require physical inspection. This model is fading as a new one will take its place—the click-and-mortar dealership.

The click-and-mortar model is the next level in car retail as it combines the efficiency and ease of online shopping with the convenience of delivery, and tops it with the great customer experience achieved by contact center solutions. The future of car retail will see dealerships that sell cars online, pay their salesmen via salary, not commission (so their job morphs into more of call center agents), and facilitate sales with easy delivery. There is a lot of emphasis on communication channels as this model requires high-level communication with customers, suppliers, and delivery.

Online Inventory

The next level of retail will simplify the buying process by migrating their inventory online. Transactions and billing are carried out online with customers inputting basic information and dealers outputting quotes. Online inventories will streamline workflow and reduce queues that build up if a large volume of customers were in a physical dealership.

Keeping a digital record of transactions makes storing, retrieving, and sending easier and automatic. It fosters the easy transfer of information between dealerships and car shipping services. With an online inventory, you can offer advanced features like next day delivery, a real-time cost calculator, and technical support via chatbots.

Customer Support

Providing a contact center solution is paramount to online sales as your customers become callers when they have needs that you must attend to. And because selling online breaks geographic borders, caller volume is bound to increase. The future of auto retail depends heavily on inbound call centers because when it becomes as easy as the click of a mouse to get access to thousands of vehicles, the dealerships that prosper are the ones that can handle large call volumes, provide active support teams and auto attendants, and offer personalization that creates a great experience for customers, and there are several components to doing that.

The first is providing an inbound call center that receives callers and attends to them. This involves routing callers to the right agents to attend to them, but that’s not all to it. The internet has provided more communication channels that just phone calls, there is live chat, SMS, social media, email, and a list of others. To cater to all this, you’ll need more than a call center, you’ll need a contact center.

A contact center is built to handle both inbound and outbound calls and integrate other communication channels to provide a holistic customer experience. While getting an inbound call center software is paramount to customer services, going a step further to incorporate contact center software makes all the difference.

A suitable contact center should have advanced features like ivr (interactive voice response) technology, call routing capabilities to route incoming calls to the appropriate agent, omnichannel capabilities, realtime analytics, automatic call distribution to lessen call queues and reduce the average handle time for each call, call recording for quality assurance, and crm integrations to connect to a crm like Salesforce.

Easy Car Shipping

Easy access to inventory and call center-powered customer service must be finished with convenient vehicle transport. There are auto transport companies that offer easy car shipping over long distances. This service is available to dealerships and businesses of all sizes.

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