Automotive Manufacturers Pile Customer Care Pressure on Dealers, Reveals New Research From Navigator Customer Management

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Increasing pressure is being put on dealership by automotive marques, according to new research from Navigator Customer Management (http://www.navigatorcm.com). As a result, multi-franchise dealerships are now providing multiple communications channels to their prospects and customers, with over 90% offering email and direct mail, and 65% investing in telemarketing. However, the research also reveals a major gap between multiple marque franchises and those handling just one marque.

Increasing pressure is being put on dealership by automotive marques, according to new research from Navigator Customer Management (http://www.navigatorcm.com). The new research report, Up to Speed?, reveals 58% of dealers had reported that customer care demands from manufacturers had increased over the last year. This proportion rose to 73% among dealers who trade in multiple marques. Only 3% of dealers reported a fall in customer care demands. As a result, multi-franchise dealerships are now providing multiple communications channels to their prospects and customers, with over 90% offering email and direct mail, and 65% investing in telemarketing. However, the research also reveals a major gap between multiple marque franchises and those handling just one marque. Amongst solo-marque franchises fewer than half invest in telemarketing, and only 59% use web marketing.

Rob Denton, Managing Director at Navigator Customer Management (http://www.navigatorcm.com), notes, "In a market where sales volumes have dramatically reduced, it is not surprising that manufacturers are putting increased pressure on their sales channel to improve customer care. Equally, in a slow market, the imperative of removing all barriers to contact and sales means that customers and prospect have to be offered a choice of how they communicate with the dealer. Simply put, the easier it is to find and interact with a dealership, the more likely it is to close more sales.

"As competition mounts over a lower volume of sales opportunities, any difficulty in contacting a dealership puts an obstacle in the way of sales. Some leading dealers have also invested in tele-follow-up to ensure that prospects who have taken test drives are encouraged as much as possible to make a purchase. Dealers offering multi-channel access are those who will be most successful in gaining market share in difficult times."

For a copy of the management summary, please visit http://www.navigatorcm.com and contact John Sweeney through the site contact mechanism

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Paul Lindsell
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