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Is your dealership ready for 2018?

Article Highlights:

  • New year, new dealership goals?
  • Learn how your dealership can improve with these 5 attainable goals.

Year after year, we set personal goals and make plans to better ourselves in the upcoming year. But what about business goals? They are just as important. If you need help brainstorming, here are potential New Year’s resolutions that can help your dealership grow:

  1. Go Digital

Dealerships produce an overwhelming amount of documents, and they are often misfiled, misplaced, or lost. As a result, your dealership may face fines, low CSI scores, reputation hits, and wasted time filing and looking for documents. To eliminate the paper burden, look for new technology that reduces paper and moves information across the dealership in a quick and simplified way. A streamlined process results in less time spent with physical paper, improved compliance, and increased accountability across the entire dealership.

  1. Develop Stronger Reporting

Understanding how things are playing out in your dealership is critical. How many contracts are still in transit? How many are long overdue? Where is the cash for that receivable? What is holding it up? The dealership can have so many unknowns, making proper business decisions trickier. But if you could connect the dots all at once through detailed, transparent reporting, the answers to your dealership’s future could be in the palm of your hands. Track goals, create forecasts, and process contracts in transit in a more effective way that makes sense for you.

  1. Increase Customer Engagement

It’s much harder to attract someone’s attention once you’ve lost it. Most customers dread going into the F&I office to talk numbers, so they shut down and close themselves off. What if you could create more customer engagement in a simple, yet enjoyable way? Interactive accessories presentations before F&I can keep customers in the buying mode. There’s no pressure, so customers are able to customize their vehicle to their liking and truly visualize their future ride!

  1. Reduce Wait Time

Customers have better things to do than sit and wait around at your dealership. They expect the process to be quick and painless. When the average F&I process lasts 60-90 minutes, customers become frustrated or exhausted—two feelings you never want customers to experience. To eliminate the pain of long wait times, digitize your F&I process. Customers are more satisfied because it’s quick and engaging, and your dealership becomes a standout for customer service. Happy customer = happy dealership.

  1. Focus on Presenting Every Recommendation

Parts and service are the most profitable departments in your dealership, with sales of nearly $110 billion nationwide[1]. However, dealerships are only capturing a fraction of the entire fixed operations market. Data shows about 80% of vehicles on the road today need a repair or service of some kind[2]. Are your advisors taking advantage of every service opportunity? If your dealership does not have a process or tools to present, track, and save recommended and declined services, your advisors are at a disadvantage. Service advisors need to be better prepared to act on every opportunity for additional profit, and that means presenting every recommendation. Tools that force proper procedure and offer data-rich reports can take an average dealership to the next level, and maximize efficiency.

With these goals in mind, you can start 2018 with a bang.

[1] NADA Data, 2016

[2] Car Care Council, 2017

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Senior Vice President, Marketing, Reynolds and Reynolds

Kasi Edwards is senior vice president of marketing at Reynolds and Reynolds. She is responsible for all marketing, including branding, advertising, communications, market research, and delivery of dealership marketing services. During her 23-year career with Reynolds, she’s built an accomplished background in sales, marketing, and product management.

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