To inform the consumer, and ultimately sell a car, digital has now become the preferred means of contact. The technologies used completely transform the experience at the point of auto sale, and make it possible to envisage new uses in the future. From websites to apps to social media, brands have more than just a digital arsenal. Even better, post-purchase data is also very numerous and useful. But the manufacturers are struggling to analyze the data captured.
A multi-screen journey, digitalized points of contact
42% of car buyers use multiple devices to buy a car today and 80% of people will use different devices by 2020, according to an Autotrader study .
In addition to the use of different devices, some car dealers have transformed their point of sale into a true high-tech showroom. All brands are going out of their efforts to make the relationship more interactive between the consumer and them. With Virtual Reality to present the entire range, information tablets or the ability to customize your vehicle on the fly with online tools, digital has been invited into the automotive world.
As a result, consumer information has never been so good! The proof, while it took on average more than four concessions visits to the buyer before deciding, the average has now dropped to 1.4 visit (Source Usine Nouvelle ).
Larger but interrupted data flows
With the multiplication of points of contact between the brand and the consumer, is customer knowledge in net progress? Not really. Of course, car manufacturers and brands from other sectors are using segmentation and targeting tools to refine their strategy, but the flow of captured data is too often fragmented and interrupted.
Because the customer journey is omni-channel, and with data from multiple media, there are real breaks between the information collected in concessions, that on the Internet, or others during marketing operations for example. This results in a silo construction, with several databases … difficult to analyze!
An online overview of data accumulation is the car configurator. Many customers find several models of configuration tools that manufacturers are developing more and more on their websites. For example, the Audi catalog includes some 50 models in 2016, compared to 5 in 1994, not to mention the possibilities of customization.
In addition to accumulating data, car manufacturers must look at the need to analyze and exploit them to develop sales. Faced with a wealth of information, the sites are vast! In addition to the data from the purchasing process, all the personal data that makes it possible to compile databases to reinforce the market power of the brand, new data comes with the emergence of the connected vehicle and new mobility solutions.
For a manufacturer, it is already possible today (or tomorrow for others) to use large data, even when the vehicle leaves the dealership.
- The technical data of the vehicle can help to understand what works, what pushes the consumers, and further refine the commercial proposition;
- Driver data will help to learn more about actual usage, including improvements, or the best proposal for renewal, “accidentology”, navigation, vehicle settings, more secrets;
- Finally, environmental data, such as information about after-sales service or repair, is also valuable in understanding the customer’s relationship with the brand, and always better satisfying it.
It is essential to connect all these data, whose sources are very diverse. This is a real technical but also organizational issue. It is therefore necessary to find sometimes external skills to shed light on the best way to exploit the data, and to obtain a real return on investment.