Women’s Wednesday #66: Be a Destination Dealer by 2020 | White Paper

Want to differentiate your store from others and grow your top and bottom line numbers? Women are now buying 45% of all cars at new car dealerships, which translates into an average of 620 new and used vehicles combined annually.

What processes can be implemented for ups, guests, and women shoppers to optimize their experience at your dealership, especially the ones who walk in and say they’re just looking? Do your front-line people think these guests aren’t serious and ignore them or does your store have a process to engage these shoppers after a few minutes?

A simple action like taking the time to upsell the dealership by offering a 3-minute tour of the facility, explaining that your service hours are the best in the area, can make a big difference. Give guests a coupon for a free car wash and explain that overnight cars are provided in your service area. All of this demonstrates that you care, that you’re selling more than cars, you’re selling futures.

Download the Dealership 2020 white paper and get the insights and real-case scenarios about how your dealership can begin tapping into more sales to women.

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Never miss a chance to sell your dealership—get 8 steps to have your business be The Destination Difference™ in your area or region. Start implementing shifts now and get ahead of the trend.

Women’s Wednesday #65: How Can You Increase Your Sales to Women?

One Size Fits All No Longer Applies
According to the NADA, new vehicle revenue in 2016 was $995 billion, and sales to women accounted for $445 billion of that revenue at new car dealerships. With women buying 4.5 of every 10 cars, how can you increase your sales to women by 7% to 10%?

Ten years ago, the ad spend was all in traditional venues like newspaper, radio, and TV. Today, that bucket seems small in comparison to the amount allocated to digital/online. Just like dealerships no longer spend in the “one-size-fits-all” traditional category, there remains opportunities for new marketing segmentation strategies.

What’s the bottom line? Women are making extraordinary differences in terms of gross margin dollars and sales achieved at new car dealers. The advertising expenses per dealership average $587,787, according to the NADA. With half of your buyers being women, step back and ask yourself who your advertising speaks to.

Technology and Lifestyle Trends Change
Women research on their home computers, tablets, or mobile devices for 75 days before buying a car. So the opportunity to advertise couldn’t be riper. Allocate some of your dealer advertising where the trends are. Not venturing where the market is can leave you in the shadow of other dealership that are savvy for competitive exposure.

What’s Your Aha to Connect with Buyers?
What’s your dealer’s DNA message and aha that women will remember? Is it really through ads and campaigns like:

  • Get the Best Price Here at Our Dealership
  • We Match Any Competitor’s Price
  • Drive Here for the Best Results

For the most part, these gender-neutral, bland catch-all statements don’t share what your compelling aha is.

How Can Your Message Connect to Your OEMs?
From website sidebar or banner ads to mobile apps, there are new opportunities to utilize a similar theme or thread. From Facebook to Pandora, you can now zero in on the exact female audience and age group. Dedicate dollars to advance your market space by running monthly campaigns to reach a captive audience with sponsoring ads on mobile apps to women and family-oriented interests.

Dedicate New Messages: Time to Progress
Understanding that women buyers are looking for a connection will help you and your creative team.

  1. In addition to your current ads and promotions, include statistics about your reputation and reviews. Women use dealer reviews 50% more than men, and reviews influence women three times more than price, according to ReviewTracker.
  2. Include images of women and car shopping at your dealership throughout your print and online marketing campaigns and website.
  3. Market and host educational auto-related events and seminars.
  4. Develop relationships with female buyers before they walk through the door through social media and informative articles to highlight your dealership’s aha and value.
  5. Communicate long-term service and maintenance care with a WiFi-enabled waiting lounge equipped with refreshments and desk stations for computer work. If your dealership provides loaner cars, be sure to include this concierge service in your advertising.

Paying attention to consumer and demographic trends is valuable for growing your dealership.

Women’s Wednesday #64: Millennial Women and Your Market Share

Reshaping The Industry’s Economy
The millennial. Individuals born between 1980 and 2000 comprise ‘one of the largest generations in history’. In a recent article “Millennials Coming of Age”, by Goldman Sachs, millennials are not only poised to reshape the economy, but are about to move into prime spending years. Millennials overtook Baby Boomers, ages 51 to 69, as the largest generation according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Women of all age groups are buying 4.5 out of every 10 vehicles. However of those millennial buyers, 53% are women. Honing in on what factors contribute to car purchases made by millennial women can help dealerships step into a larger market share.

How Millennials Stand Out From The Crowd
What makes millennial women stand out from non-millennial women? According to Women-Drivers.com, millennials ranked price, style, brand, color and warranty as top factors for car purchasing. Trustworthiness and respect ranked as the top two reasons to buy from a sales advisor. Additionally, millennials who are adept at using reviews in many product categories, use car dealer reviews readily to help them locate what dealerships to do business with.

Millennials Are Digitally Engaged with Dealers
Since millennial buyers have grown up with the internet and smartphones, they are highly connected with social media. Goldman Sachs states that 44% of millennials text message, 16% blog, 38% instant message, and 38% are engaged in social media. For example, Women-Drivers.com reports that social interaction is critical:

  • 44% of millennial respondents viewed a dealership’s Facebook page, an average of 10% higher than non-millennials.
  • 67.5% of millennials furthered to “Like” a dealership’s Facebook page, an average of 10% higher than non-millennials.

One takeaway would be that millennial women are more evaluative that non-millennial women. Additionally, millennial women are open to using dealer’s social communities.

Social Selling Sales Advisors
Connecting with this group means engaging a generation that places effort to find answers within an electronic style of communication. A style that’s silent but not soft spoken, educational but not elusive, and often promotes multitasking. Their energies are to be reigned in with true and genuine interest.

Millennials interact with Instagram, Twitter and Facebook as social media mainstays. What are sales advisors doing to grab ahold of a portion of engagement? Smart sales advisors build leads off their successful sales relationships. They ask for the referrals and reviews, and the satisfied customer happily provides. Behind the scenes lay electronic connections ready and waiting. “Friend” or “Follow”, those requests and actions taken upon referred names create a plethora of potential customers. Social profiles built by sales advisors with the intent of building leads is becoming a new system of lead generation.

Be Personable and Prosper
Our data reports that millennial women traveled further to visit showrooms and are less likely to shop the nearest dealership. Goldman Sachs points out in its article that millennials have less money to spend, while industry reports show that younger buyers have little interest in negotiating purchase price. Sales advisors could capitalize on their discussions with millennial women and secure a more decisive market.

Does your advertising speak to this segment specifically, and not just have a women spokesperson on a sports TV or weekend ad? Listen to the millennial woman and bring the showroom tour into a vision of comfort, longevity, service center and multitasking lounge that serves as hub for the busy woman scheduling around work, school and personal time. Become the dealership that cares about the millennial women buyers and prepare to excel in your sales across the board by applying the principles of being personable, relatable, and interactive.

Women’s Wednesday #63: The Science of Shopping vs Buying | What it Means to You

‘Buying a car’ versus ‘shopping without buying’ emits a varied set of emotions for women car buyers.

A new Women-Drivers.com study reveals that when there is money in the game, emotions dial up with the heightened sense of commitment. The data reported by women in the 2017 US Women’s Car Dealership Report shows that is it only natural when buying a big ticket item that the buyers excitement level escalates.

But there’s more than that.

When Purchasing, women report:

  • Confidence wanes by 9 percent
  • Nervousness goes up by over 10 percent
  • Feeling Overwhelmed increases
  • And, more.

5 Ways to help Position the Value of your Dealership and Bolster Women’s Confidence
The chances of an under-confident woman recommending your dealership to friends or family is not very high and, in fact, her negative emotion(s) could result in an unfavorable review. Buying a car is a big decision for anyone, and the sales process includes a series of emotions that can be positive or negative and can be greatly influenced by your sales team. Learning how to turn an apprehensive shopper into a happy, satisfied buyer will pay off now and in the future.

Women are buying 4.5 out of every 10 new cars. Business is competitive.

Make Selling, Advertising and Marketing to them a priority.

Women’s Wednesday #62: Do You Know How Many Dealers Women Buyers Are Visiting?

Industry experts tell us that car buyers go to 1.6 dealerships to buy a vehicle.

From the Women-Drivers.com 2017 US Women’s Car Dealership Report, we find that number to be true for half of women car buyers. The other half report a very different answer altogether. An amazing forty-six percent of women car buyers are going to twice the industry average, or 3.2 dealer visits.

Which begs a few questions:

  1. Are the industry experts talking to enough women when conducting their research?
  2. What evidence do you have that the women coming into your store are buying from you? Do you track guests that are overlooked and leave? Do you measure these lost sales and put new behaviors and practices in place to re-capture them?

In the “How Many Car Dealers Are Women Buyers Visiting” white paper, learn that 60% of women who leave a dealership without buying, do not return. Understand what the top 5 reasons are for not buying at a dealership – do any of these sound familiar when women leave your store?

Discover what top dealerships are doing to earn her buy-in and create the right conditions for the sale on the first visit.

Women’s Wednesday #61: Top Service Drive Brands Rated by Women for 2017

Sixty-two percent of women report that they return to the dealerships where they first purchased their vehicles to then have them serviced. This highlights the potential to grow value among this critical market segment.

Changing family dynamics have put women squarely in the driver’s seat with an estimated one-half of all cars sold being purchased by women who are then directly responsible for decisions involving vehicle maintenance and service appointment scheduling.

This makes offering post-sales service on her terms a value proposition worth embracing.

It All Adds Up
From our 2017 US Women’s Car Dealership Report, game-changing data offers a new view of the Top 15 service drive brands rated and ranked by 4,653 women when at their dealerships.

  • Dealer Satisfaction Scores – High trust and comfort levels are must haves for women.
  • Fixed Operations Income – Service alerts and courtesy vehicles keep her coming back.
  • Future Purchase & Referral Rates – Listening without interrupting earns repeat business and valuable referrals from her.

Service, Please!
Becky Nixon, an industry authority and Director of Fixed Operations Training for David Lewis & Associates, offers the following:

“Psychologists tell us that women are generally detail-oriented and inquisitive by nature. Convenience being the key, all recommended repairs or maintenance must come with an honest and definitive timeline attached.”

Women who buy from Women-Drivers Certified Trusted Dealers confirm this. They want their questions answered, cars serviced in a timely manner and a service experience that makes them feel good. Making women feel heard, appreciated and understood goes a long way toward earning their repeat business—and referrals. And, very positive reviews.

The Last Word – Distinguish
There already exists a time frame for women to return to their original dealership for recalls or mandatory service visits associated with vehicle warranties. To keep them coming back after those years have passed, it’s imperative to offer relationship-building perks which distinguish your brand, like:

  • Free car washes or annual ‘we-appreciate-your-business’ detailing offers.
  • Comfortable seating in lounge areas, Wi-Fi connectivity with nearby power outlets, entertaining play areas for children, and clean restrooms.
  • Refreshment stations stocked with quality coffee, tea, water and healthy snacks.

Adopt marketing strategies that speak to women’s concerns. Your website and e-newsletters are the avenues for targeted messages and selling strategies when they shed light on service offerings of benefits and provide a deeper understanding of maintenance procedures.

Women rely on these resources for links and data that help them assess a potential need for repairs (i.e. worn out windshield wipers, squeaky breaks). Educational content that is aimed at ensuring their families’ safety can boost a dealership’s brand image and trust among women.

Note: Women’s #1 requested concierge item is a courtesy vehicle. What lasting impression are you leaving your female clients in your highest gross margin department?