The customer journey consists of various different milestones. For example, it often begins with an online request for a brochure by a customer, pursued by a follow-up call or a cost offer by the salesperson. All of those steps are important in order to please a customer, meet their needs and to be able to close a contract in the end.
One of the most decisive milestones is when a customer requests a test drive, especially in times where online interaction has increased significantly due to digitalization. When it comes to a test drive, a customer leaves the world wide web behind and meets a salesperson face-to-face, so that the salesperson gets the chance to deploy their sales talent and help the customer in the “real world” to find the perfect car.
A study by AM-online shows: More than 9 out of 10 dealers consider the test drive as an important tool in securing a customer sale. The study also shows that dealers point to test drives as being important in shifting customers from the consideration phase to the purchase phase. Among customers who go on to purchase a new vehicle, 80 % are estimated to have taken a test drive beforehand.*
This data shows that there is no doubt regarding the importance of a test drive. However, a lot of salespeople struggle with one major challenge. Often, salespeople lack relevant information about their customers when they show up for a test drive, meaning that they need to rely on guesswork about the potential wishes and needs of their client in order to steer the sales process. Do they prefer gas or diesel, and want 2 or 4 doors? What color and which technical equipment is required?
Our guest author Henrik Kinder, from KiNDER automotive solutions, is sharing his insights about test drives.
An article about the importance of detailed customer insights and how to get them.
“What else could a salesperson at a car dealership wish for than to receive detailed customer information and a request for a test drive? As we all know, a test drive is most likely the last step to a successful sale.
Valid information about potential customers is essential for a perfect sales preparation. So how can I get this information (besides my own sales pipeline)?
Platforms, such as Autogott.at in Austria, enable customers to configure their car, check which possible stock vehicles are available, evaluate their current used car and often ask for a test drive. This data can be acquired by dealers/importers. The sales manager then receives all of the information about the configured car, as well as information about the customer’s current car or other configurations of new cars the customer has made. He can then contact the potential customer and arrange a test drive.
The use of this data will definitely increase your sales pipeline. It’s easy, efficient and cost effective. Just do it.”
About Henrik Kinder
Henrik Kinder has more than 15 years experience in management in a leading position in the automotive industry and related sectors. With his consulting company KiNDER automotive SOLUTIONS, Kinder uses his expertise and has specialized on strategy planning and operative implementation. Kinder has an extended network in Austria and Eastern Europe. Learn more at kinderautomotivesolutions.com