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Read your customer’s mind (when they visit you online)

BY LAUREN LABUNSKY

When a customer walks into your dealership, it’s easy to find out what type of unit they are interested in. A member of your sales team can simply ask, but they also have an opportunity to observe the customer’s in-store behavior before they approach. Is the customer heading for the ATV display? Clearly, they are not in the market for a snowmobile. Are they checking out your selection of street bikes? In that case, your sales team won’t want to talk to them about dirt bikes. Or maybe the customer is headed for parts and accessories and isn’t showing interest in purchasing a new unit at all. 

Unfortunately, it is impossible to make these kinds of in-person observations when a customer visits your online showroom – your website. There is no way to know exactly who your website visitors are, what brand pages and units they are clicking on, or how they are interacting with additional digital marketing efforts of yours such as your emails or social media platforms – unless you choose to implement Marketing Automation software. 

Marketing Automation makes all these things possible and more. This tool integrates with your website platform to capture visitor information as soon as it is provided through a lead form, and then creates a track record of every action that the website visitor takes. This gives you a clear picture of each visitor (lead) and their interests, plus their level of intent to purchase. A lead who has visited the Yamaha ATV page on your site multiple times and frequently clicks on specific units is clearly in the market for a Yamaha ATV. It wouldn’t make sense for a sales representative to reach out to that lead about different unit types or send them an email about a sales promotion that isn’t relevant to ATVs. The interests that the lead has shown and the actions that the lead has taken give your sales team the right information to follow up in the right way. Additionally, the fact that the lead has viewed these units multiple times indicates that they are fairly serious about purchasing. A sales representative should reach out to this lead with a different approach than they might use with a prospect who has simply browsed the website or clicked on one email. 

While Marketing Automation gives your dealership eyes to see what your online customers are thinking about when they visit your site, it also helps your sales team prioritize the most important prospects and hottest leads through Lead Scoring. This system allows your dealership to decide on the highest-value actions that a lead could take on your site and assign scores to those actions accordingly. For some dealerships, the highest scores may be assigned to specific lead forms or call-to-action buttons on your site. For others, an email reply may be considered highest priority. The Lead Scoring system can be customized on a dealership-by-dealership basis, depending on what business goals are most important. 

The ability to score leads based on actions combined with the ability to reach out to leads with messaging based on interests creates an outstanding potential to capture a customer’s attention and entice them to buy. For the website visitor, it’s almost as if you’ve read their mind – your sales team knows exactly what they are in the market for and how likely they are to buy before you even reach out to them. They are taken on a customer journey that is personalized and specific to them and will best encourage them to follow through to sale. Marketing Automation bridges the gap between a lead’s online experience and in-person purchase decision.  

Lauren Labunsky is the public relations manager at Dealer Spike, a leading web services provider for powersports dealerships. The award-winning digital advertising company is focused on helping dealers increase sales through powerful, distinctive website design and a full suite of online marketing tools to drive results. Dealer Spike’s expertise comes from real-world dealership experience and a team of professionals who also ride. When you work with Dealer Spike, you’re working with digital marketing experts who have a passion for your industry.

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