Innovation hits every industry—and the automotive industry is no different. In recent years, various technologies have popped up to help dealers streamline their sales processes, enhance service operations, and transform the way they sell and maintain vehicles. But not every auto dealer has been quick to adopt technologies to modernize their business.
Some auto dealerships are stuck in the past, still relying on paper-driven processes and outdated pre- and post-sales methods. While sticking to the norm is comfortable, it’s not beneficial for success. The world is modernizing. The way car buyers prefer to purchase and interact with auto dealers is changing because things are becoming increasingly digital. If companies in the industry want to stay competitive—and in business long term—they must make the necessary shifts. And those shifts begin and end with adopting dealership technologies that will help modernize their auto dealerships.
Practical Reasons to Modernize
There are practical reasons for dealerships to phase out their outdated processes and applications to implement new technologies. Those reasons include the following:
- Streamlines business operations: With innovative technology, auto dealers will have more effective and efficient processes and operations to boost productivity and enhance profitability.
- Enhances user experience: Car buyers are increasingly using digital tools to research and purchase vehicles. Auto dealerships that want to meet and satisfy consumers online can rely on modern technology to deliver an intuitive and seamless experience.
- Boosts collaboration: Paper-driven processes decrease collaboration. Technology can boost it to help employees communicate more effectively and get what they need quickly. This collaboration can also increase productivity and profitability.
- Gives a competitive edge: The dealerships that embrace technology will gain a competitive advantage in the market, primarily because not many auto dealers are relying on innovative tools to enhance employees’ and consumers’ lives.
- Decreases expenses: Because dealership technologies can streamline processes, decrease manual labor, and increase productivity, dealerships can experience great cost savings.
- Improves decision-making: Certain technologies deliver real-time data and insights. With more information, auto dealers and their teams can make better decisions to meet car buyers’ needs and boost growth.
- Promotes scalability: Modernized tools make it easier for organizations to grow more seamlessly, allowing for healthy, sustainable expansion.
- Increases agility: The market is continuously changing, especially as things become more digital. However, with good dealership technologies, auto dealers and their teams can quickly respond to changes and rapidly adapt to meet new market needs.
- Creates a positive brand perception: If dealerships invest in modernizing their brands, people will notice. Employees will be happier, job seekers will consider these companies more seriously, and car buyers will be easier to attract.
- Enhances data management: Technology can ensure data is accurate, secure, and accessible. Implementing it will give employees and car buyers greater confidence in dealerships.
Regardless of how auto dealers look at it, investing in technology is a wise business strategy for long-term success. Using innovative tools to modernize operations and processes will keep dealerships relevant and competitive and ensure they have what it takes to keep up in an ever-changing market and digital landscape.
The Best Dealership Technologies to Adopt
While making the decision to modernize should be simple for auto dealers given the benefits, determining which technologies to implement may be challenging. There are many tools on the market. Some are necessary, while some aren’t. Additionally, some are important to get now, while others can be implemented later. Because of this reality, here are the most important dealership technologies auto dealers should get as soon as possible to start modernizing their businesses today.
1. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems
A customer relationship management (CRM) system is crucial for dealerships to implement. These platforms not only help auto dealers gather and manage customer data, but they also enable them to deliver a personalized and seamless buying journey. With a good CRM system, dealerships can track customer interactions, monitor sales leads, and predict customer preferences. When this data is utilized, car dealerships put themselves in the perfect position to enhance their marketing efforts to increase sales and build long-term customer relationships.
2. Virtual Showrooms and Online Sales Platform
As the digital world changes shopping behavior, dealerships can modernize by creating virtual showrooms and online sales platforms. These technologies enable car buyers to explore vehicles from the comfort of their homes, schedule test drives, and even complete the entire buying process online. Because customers will have the convenience of shopping for cars on their terms, auto dealers can reach a wider audience to boost sales.
3. Online DMV Services Platform
This type of tool allows auto dealers to rely on outsourced experts to get the titles, tags, registration, and license plates their car buyers need. Finding this digital tool isn’t easy because it’s a relatively new offering, but it is available with us at Barry Risk Management. We have an online platform that auto dealers can use to request the DMV items their car buyers need. Once a request is submitted, our team of representatives—who have more than 30 years of experience in the DMV industry—will get the documents and mail them to car buyers. That means dealerships that use our online DMV services platform can stop waiting in long lines at the DMV and searching for forms to fill out.
4. Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
It may seem surprising that auto dealers can rely on augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR)—it’s rare to hear someone use these technologies in the same sentence as “car dealership.” However, AR and VR are powerful tools that can enhance the car-buying experience.
Dealerships can use AR to provide virtual tours of vehicles so that consumers can view a car’s features and specifications in detail. VR, on the other hand, can give potential customers a chance to take virtual test drives, allowing them to immerse themselves in the driving experience before making a purchase. Because these tools help car buyers make more informed decisions and have a memorable, engaging shopping experience, dealerships with AR and VR will build brand loyalty, brand awareness, and a positive brand perception.
5. Inventory Management Systems
Managing a dealership’s inventory can be a complex task. Fortunately, inventory management systems can significantly simplify the process. These tools track the availability of vehicles, manage pricing, and optimize vehicle placements on the lot. With the real-time data and analytics that these technologies offer, auto dealers can make data-driven decisions to enhance their inventory’s profitability.
6. Service Management Software
Car purchases aren’t the only things that matter to a dealership’s success. Service departments are equally important, which means service management software is essential to utilize. This tool can provide efficient and high-quality maintenance and repairs, help streamline appointment scheduling, track work orders, and manage parts inventory. Additionally, some service management software allows for predictive maintenance, enabling auto dealerships to anticipate and address issues before they become major problems, improving customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Take Steps to Implement Dealership Technologies
As the world continues to change and technology innovates, dealerships must stay on the cutting edge to meet customer expectations and remain competitive in the ever-evolving automotive landscape. If they don’t, it’s only a matter of time before they fall behind other brands.
Take the first step to modernize your dealership by contacting our team at Barry Risk Management at 1-888-995-TAGS(8247). We’ll get you set up to use our online DMV services platform.