England is just over halfway through its second lockdown, and as car dealers prepare to reopen their doors on December 2 the digital route is still a vitally important sales channel.
You may think you’ve got it covered but how can you be sure? Here’s a host of top tips from e-commerce specialists GForces to ensure you make the most of selling online.
- Your website needs to have full online functionality
- There should be clear signposting throughout detailing the ability to buy online – homepage banners, skinny page banners, fixed banners on imagery, online proposition details on vehicle details page
- Review plug-ins throughout the online journey, specifically on the vehicle details page to promote trust and confidence
- There should be clear signposted ‘buy online’ options – reservation, pay in full or apply for finance (and receive an instant credit decision)
- All the above need to be ‘baked’ into the native dealer website so that the customer isn’t taken away from the site to third-party plug-ins
- Offer budget finance calculators so the customer can tailor their own finance quote
- Data privacy and security is a key factor in promoting safe and secure payments – there should be clear details of the types of payment provider methods available (Visa, Amex, Mastercard, Apple Pay, etc)
- Ensure used car warranty details are visible – ideally on the vehicle details page
- There needs to be good imagery and video content of vehicles
- Offer a guaranteed part-exchange valuation at the checkout and give the customer full control of self-part-exchange appraisal
- Offer additional extras at the checkout, such as paint protection and extended warranties, with a good description of each product and clear pricing, including any video collateral
- Let the customer choose their delivery or collection method. Offer home delivery – ideally free – and make lead times clear and concise
- Ensure Financial Conduct Authority regulatory compliance for consumer credit is clear and easy to understand, and include simple finance product descriptions using video collateral – and avoid legal jargon
- Make the terms and conditions of online business easily visible and ensure they focus on distance selling and cancellation rights
- Ensure live chat is visible at the appropriate steps of the online journey to support the customer with any questions
- Have a My Account/Guest checkout creation step so the customer can save their progress (vehicle, finance quote, part-exchange) and return to it at a later point to pick up where they left off
Once you’ve got all the above in place, then you’ll be in good stead not only right now but for the foreseeable future.