Mobile Technology: Meet Customers on Their Terms

Was your dealership technology built to accommodate an old, outdated process?

When I started working in the automotive industry 26 years ago, I expected that cars would change and evolve significantly in the future.

Like others in the industry, I did not anticipate the car-buying experience would change so drastically during the same time period.

Gone are the days of a predictable, linear car-buying process where customers follow a natural path between planned stops at your dealership. Today’s car customers do business on their own terms.

Unfortunately, your dealership technology was probably built to accommodate that old, outdated process. It’s time to adapt to industry changes by adopting the latest mobile technology that allows dealership representatives to meet customers where they are.

Meet customer mobility expectations

Increased availability of information has transformed the automotive industry over the past decade.

Because information is easy to access in other areas of their lives, customers have grown impatient and unwilling to wait for answers to their questions.

Whether inside at a desk or outside on the lot, car buyers now expect your staff to have immediate access to inventory, specifications, pricing, and other types of information.

They do not like to wait for answers, be passed off to other staff members, or have to move between different areas of the dealership.

New dealership technologies let your staff access the DMS and other systems using a tablet or mobile phone.

This enables them to answer questions, provide information, and even access customer information wherever they are within the dealership.

When customers receive quick answers and timely information, they are more likely to purchase—and to evaluate their dealership experiences positively.

Level the playing field instantly

In addition to altering expectations of customer experience, increased availability of information has shifted the power dynamic between dealers and customers. Armed with information about vehicles and pricing, highly informed customers have put dealerships at a disadvantage.

Mobile technologies can help level the playing field for dealerships by providing employees with additional information.

With up-to-the-minute access to pricing, specs, and inventory, your staff will have all the tools and confidence needed to objectively respond to customer questions and demands.

Increase employee efficiency

Mobile technologies also have benefits that go beyond customer experience. Dealerships using mobile technology experience improvements in operational efficiencies, which can translate to increased profits.

When employees can access information and perform tasks from anywhere, they waste less time wandering from place to place or jumping between systems.

Mobile technologies even make it possible for dealership executives to access performance data at any time, even when they’re working offsite.

Take it from an industry veteran—the days of a simple, linear car-buying experience are history.

Armed with volumes of information, today’s customers demand immediate answers, personalized service, and quick transactions.

Fortunately, mobile technologies are making it possible for dealerships to deliver on these demands, improving customer experience and employee efficiency.

Looking ahead at the next 26 years of automotive innovation, I’m confident that mobile technology will prove to be a worthwhile investment in your dealership’s future.

Dealertrack DMS, under the leadership of Sharon Kitzman, vice president and general manager, is helping to transform the way dealers sell cars, engage customers, and run their businesses. Kitzman is a 26-year automotive industry veteran responsible for leading Dealertrack’s DMS division from single- to double-digit market share, and for executing triple-digit growth.

Sharon Kitzman

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