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Big Tom LaPointe

Big Tom LaPointe National Sales Executive with Dealer Teamwork

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Three reasons a 24/7 live dealership website chat solution is important

Are you listeningI was having this debate with a car dealer friend the other day who was content having his CHAT NOT AVAILABLE icon show after hours on his dealership website. We live in a world in which people want what they want - and they want it NOW. Here are three reasons after-hours support can be critical to your business:

  • The sales process and rapport-building can begin immediately and result in more auto sales leads
  • It can generate a lead that results in a sale. If they had affordable, trained staff to greet visitors on the lot around the clock, most dealers would do it. Why not in the virtual world?
  • It can prevent a CSI issue in sales OR service from costing a survey, incentive money, or (most importantly) the loss of a valuable customer - as well as the buyers they influence. Maybe all three

Why is 24/7 important? We all come to our positions in the modern business world from different paths. Mine has primarily been the luxury car arena. Off and on for a decade and a half, I have spent the bulk of my time in luxury dealerships and as a broker. In THAT market, buyers are often halfway around the world when they are calling, filling out query forms, or emailing about a sales or service matter. But even during my work with mainstream brands like Chevrolet and Dodge, we had leads coming during all hours of the day from shift workers and (VERY often) deployed military contacting us from all over the world - Germany, Japan, Afghanistan. They often don't have affordable access to a phone (especially when store staff is awake), but a 'live' chat conversation is a HUGE step toward creating a sales relationship.

Plus, our years of data providing software and service at CarChat24 shows us that this service is one of the best for ROI that you can include in your online marketing mix.

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Tom LaPointe
CarChat24

Interactive Media Manager / Industry Analyst

www.carchat24.com/
24/7 Interactive Automotive Dealer Website Chat Solutions
Hosted or In-House Options – FREE web chat software
727-638-0195

Tom has an MBA in Marketing and is an automotive writer and author with more than 15 years experience in virtually every aspect of the retail auto industry. He has been a performance leader in everything from sales and service, to web development and viral marketing.

www.facebook.com/CarChat24 / https://twitter.com/CarChat24 / bit.ly/CarChat24GooglePlus

 

Ron Henson
Hi Tom. These are all great points. This topic even goes a bit deeper. I will often see dealers displaying a "Chat Not Available" icon during regular business hours. That frustrates potential customers! I know that when I go to a business site I want instant gratification if I have a question. Having a "Chat Not Available" icon is like sticking out your tongue and saying neener, neener, neener. You can't talk to us.
Big Tom LaPointe
Thanks Ron - I've always benchmarked dealer marketing against fortune 500 companies and my day-to-day experiences, and that 'not available' icon boils my blood most when it IS during business hours - kind of like the canned automated phone answer system that gives you the store hours and a 'please leave a message' suggestion DURING BUSINES HOURS! lol

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