How To Turn Your Chat Tool Into A Buying Center

By integrating a customer-facing chat tool into your dealership’s website, you can capture a new market of customers and create high-quality leads from interested shoppers. The right chat tools provide an excellent method of boosting your customer engagement by helping your customers feel heard while giving your sales team a chance to learn more about their needs and pain points.

Let’s go over some of the ways that live chat tools can greatly benefit automotive retailers in the digital space.

What Is A Chat Tool?

Chat tools are a handy way of offering an “in-store” customer service experience to your online visitors. While browsing your site, shoppers can be greeted with a small chat window where they can ask questions and get reliable answers from your team in real-time. This provides potential customers with a similar experience to what they might have if they walked into your showroom.

How Do Chat Tools Work?

In execution, chat tools are quite simple. When you install a live chat application on your website, visitors are shown a small pop-up chat box on certain pages. By clicking reply in the chat box, users can send your team a private message in-browser.

On the customer service end, your team receives a new ticket, allowing them to open up a direct synchronous line of communication with the customer.

Communication doesn’t have to end with simple text, either! Live chat tools can integrate with a variety of software, webpages, and resources to enrich the experience and provide visitors to your site with more context and information than words alone can provide.

Why Does My Dealership Need A Chat Tool?

With a well-utilized chat tool, your dealership can provide a more personal touch and build trust in potential customers. Before a customer even sets foot in your dealership, you can lay the foundation of a trusting and transparent relationship that values their wants, needs, and concerns.

Done right, a chat tool introduces a human element to a situation that otherwise feels very scripted and robotic. Not only does it inject personality into a possibly stale interaction, but it also creates a time-stamped record of a customer’s questions and troubleshooting, which allows your team to refer back and better understand where individual customers are coming from and which pain points they need help solving.

Why Does Live Chat Drive Revenue?

It’s plain to see that messaging tools are great for dealerships. But what is it about live chat specifically that allows it to drive revenue?

Builds Trust With First-Time Visitors

Online shopping has a trust problem. In the early stages especially, it’s difficult to cultivate an environment where buyers can feel like their money and personal data are secure, let alone that the site in question will provide the best buying experience. This is especially true when it comes to larger purchases, like vehicles.

While a lot of what makes a site feel “legit” comes down to design and functionality, a friendly live chat function is an excellent way to make buyers feel welcome right out of the gate. This is your first chance to show that real, well-spoken humans are on the other end, ready and able to guide them through the process.

Provides Timely Support

Though it might seem trivial, most consumers appreciate and expect a prompt response from customer service when they ask questions. A quick answer sends the impression that your dealership takes its business seriously and values the customer’s time and concerns. Even when the answer to their question isn’t a potential dealbreaker, quick answers are a sign of respect that resonate with customers.

Delivers Superior Customer Experience

Not all websites provide the answers that customers need, and even some that do provide answers struggle to curate their customer service information in a way that allows customers to find it easily.

By having a live chat ready on your website, you show customers that your dealership brings customer service to them instead of making them search for it. Knowing that someone is there and ready to help if needed offers buyers a sense of security, letting them know that they aren’t alone in their big purchase decision.

Drives The Buying Experience

As your customers become more intent on buying a vehicle with your dealership, that’s when they bring out their mental checklist of needs, wants, and deal breakers. As they get closer to making the decision, this is the time they’ll be asking the most questions and where your prompt and accurate information can be the most valuable.

Specialized chat tools, like those offered by CarNow, can also provide a variety of integrations to supplement your messages to buyers. By embedding specific vehicle listings, inventory numbers, and images, you can share more up-to-date and accurate information that gives your buyers a richer online encounter with your dealership and enriches the buying experience.

Increases Leads For Sales

A more informed customer is a customer that knows what they want and is more prepared to pursue it. The flow of information nurtured by chat tools will ensure that your potential customers have all the information they need to actively and enthusiastically make their purchases.

Dealerships that open up a dialogue with browsing online customers sow the seeds of interest early on. When customers get the impression that a particular dealer is prompt, trustworthy, and transparent, they’ll think of that dealership later on when they are more ready to buy. Good communication at the beginning can create new leads in the future.

Reduces Time To Close

The time it takes to close a sale is often influenced by customer engagement. The amount of one-on-one time that a customer has with someone who can address their questions is correlated with the speed of closing the sale. Think of it like having a front desk or greeter in your physical dealership. Instead of making the customer walk in and just wander around the dealership, looking for the information they need and someone who can help, you can position someone at the front door to welcome them and point them in the right direction for whatever they’re looking for. This streamlines the process for everyone involved, helping the customer feel valued and getting to the sale sooner.

A live chat is the online equivalent of a greeter. Customers are given an automatic lifeline should they need any support. The interaction allows for more one-on-one time with the sales team and, in doing so, reduces the time it takes to close. A win-win for everybody!

How To Use Your Chat Tool To Increase Revenue

Now that we’ve established that a chat tool can boost revenue, let’s explore some of the practical actions you and your sales team can take to ensure that your chat application pays dividends for your dealership.

Give Timely Responses & Follow-Up

A live chat tool is far more convenient for your prospects to engage with than to hunt down your contact info and spend a long time waiting on the phone. Right when they need it, customers can ask your dealership for support and receive answers to their questions in short order. Instead of playing an endless game of phone tag, you can quickly respond to prospects with one centralized, dynamic conversation.

Respond With Personalized Messages

Live chat also allows you to use site analytics to track a prospect’s history on your dealership’s site. This can be a great way to gear your recommendations in a direction tailored to their apparent interests. For instance, if you see that a customer has been visiting a particular vehicle listing frequently, you could lead the conversation with that in mind, probing further into what they like about that particular car, what their needs are, and if their desired vehicle best meets those needs.

Provide Information For Promotions & Sales

When you’re already having a one-on-one conversation with a prospect, you can more naturally inform them of your current sales and promotions. Not only do you have more knowledge of their wants and needs, but you also have the context necessary to relate the type of vehicle they’re looking for to ways they can potentially save money on their purchase.

Provide Links From Your Website

If a customer would be best served by information or resources found on your website, you can easily point them in the right direction. Whether they are looking for particular services your dealership offers, a vehicle you have in stock, contact info, or a particular form, a simple link will get them there. The ability to quickly share links can drive form submissions on your site and increase overall conversion.

Cross-Selling & Up-Selling Opportunities

Just like in the physical dealership, cross-sells and upsells don’t happen until the salesperson has more information. Live chat offers salespeople the ability to gain that information with a one-on-one conversation, just like in real life, bringing the ability to upsell into the digital automotive retailing marketplace.

Handle Multiple Chats Simultaneously

A live chat tool has an advantage over the physical dealership in that it gives salespeople the ability to multitask. In separate tabs or windows, one salesperson can converse with a handful of different customers at once, giving each the one-on-one attention they need while giving the salesperson the versatility to cover more ground.

Next Steps With CarNow

To supercharge your dealership’s sales efforts, invest in a chat tool with CarNow! With a customer messaging tool specifically designed for automotive retailing, you can turn visitors into leads and your website into a powerful, revenue-driving sales tool.

Schedule a demo with a CarNow live chat expert today!