The Connected Consumer: Building Relationships Through the Consumer Experience

connected consumer

The Connected Consumer: Building Relationships Through the Consumer Experience

Mar. 20, 2018

Are You Building Relationships That Last?

Today’s consumers are putting more information than ever about themselves online. In return, consumers want stronger relationships with dealerships that are willing to connect and use the information they’re providing.

By using consumers’ information to connect on a personal level, your dealership can build relationships that last and turn everyday consumers into your lifelong customers. To build on your understanding of the modern, connected consumer and to create lasting relationships, focus on these key qualities:

1. Personalization. When consumers’ shopping experiences are personalized, you’re 40% more likely to get a purchase. Consumers want the ability to shop, across all channels and platforms. Make sure to include live chat on your website, use Pinterest buyable pins or Twitter buy buttons to allow customers to purchase services or products on your social media platforms, and use the information your consumers provide to create targeted ads and messages for vehicles they’re searching.

2. Reviews. It’s important to keep in mind that monitoring reviews, responding to them, and making sure to provide the best customer experience possible is key to gaining more customers. An overwhelming 90% of consumers say their purchase decisions are directly influenced by others’ online reviews. So, if you run across an unhappy customer or a less-than-satisfactory review, reach out and see what your dealership can do to change the situation.

3. Response. Interacting with your consumers is high on the list of things consumers want brands to do. 42% of consumers believe brands should quickly respond to questions or mentions on any day (weekends included) and across all social media platforms or communication outlets. Not only is it important to respond to your customers’ reviews, but also reach out to consumers who are reaching out to you. It’s simple to offer a quick acknowledge via a “like” on social media platforms, a short reply, a share, or a shout-out online.

4. Straightforward Information. Often consumers are concerned for their safety or just want the ability to trust where their information is going. It’s important to remain transparent and offer quick explanations on your online platforms that show how you plan to use the information you’re asking for. Over 50% of consumers worry about how their information is used each time they login to a business website, and 29% have decided not to give out information or buy on a website because of these concerns.

5. Connection. Consumers’ relationships with brands are more personal than ever before. Almost 70% of consumers agree that shopping in today’s market is less about the products and more about what they’re feeling or needing. Focus on making sure your consumers feel like your dealership knows their needs and is connecting with them on a personal level. Use tools that allow you to know who’s in the car-buying market and what they’re searching for before they even reach out to you, so that you can connect with them first.

6. Engagement. Call on your consumers for input. 80% of millennials want brands to allow them to get in on the product creation process. Use this to your dealership’s advantage and retrieve feedback from your demographics to tweak your ideas, products, car-buying process, and interactions to fit what your consumers are asking for. Consider adding a gamification element to get more consumers involved and boost engagement.

7. Cross-Device Abilities. Consumers’ car-shopping journey is more complicated than ever before. They’re using several devices, platforms, and types of technology to interact, research, and make their purchases. It’s key for your dealership to make sure its website, inventory, and overall online presence is available and viewable across all devices. 67% of consumers move between devices while online shopping, and two out of three smartphone users say a company with a mobile-friendly site makes them more likely to buy their product or service.

8. Geographical Services. A large majority of consumers are willing to share their location just to receive more relevant content, while 74% of U.S. smartphone users are using location-based services. If your dealership has an online presence and is appealing to the community, consumers who are using location-based service and sharing are much more likely to spot you and pursue their options with your dealership.

Your dealership has made sure to foster key relationships and build strong connections with its customers, so it’s important to remember that many of today’s shoppers are gravitating to a brand’s online presence and willingness to connect. If you’re able to utilize the tools available and focus on the qualities listed above, it will be easier to connect with consumers, use the information and feedback they’re providing, and in turn, gain more customers, traffic, and advocates for your dealership.

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