Chat Challenge: Show Me Your Chat

JD Rucker
What makes for great chat software or managed services in the automotive industry? I want to know. At Dealer Authority, we don't offer chat, but it's becoming more of a concern as we work with dealers across the country on their general digital marketing needs. I'm not a chat expert, so I need help from the community. Whose chat works well? Whose does not? What are some best practices? I'd like to hear from dealers AND vendors on this one if possible, please. I'd also like to offer a challenge. To any chat company willing to show me your statistics, case studies, pitches, whatever, I'm willing to listen. The goal is to find out who we (and anyone else) should recommend. Is anyone really the best or is chat just... well, chat? Please let me know if you're up for the challenge. Dealers, please comment about your experiences as well.
Christopher Murray
We have Chat At Once and I have been very, very pleased with that company for delivering exactly what they said they would and their technical support was excellent. We only receive 4 to 8 chat requests in a month and we do close 3 of them so the $/Close is very low but chat in general is time consuming and requires, in order to be truly effective, a professional salesperson must be on the chat to truly be successful. I have every tool at my disposal from the new and used "bottom line" price book to the payment calculator, lease calculator (all PC based) inventory, etc.... Our aim or goal is to answer, without any preambles or disclaimers, any question the person might have including full quotes, etc... AFTER we share a good portion we move to trap the name, email, phone number etc... we get right back into the information sharing for a while then move in for the is effective enough.
Aaron Hassen
Hi JD, I just responded to your request via private message. We would be happy to demonstrate Contact At Once! to you. Hey Christopher, Thanks for the vote of confidence. I am glad that we're treating you well and that you are seeing sales. I must say, 4-8 chats a month is extremely low. I assume your overall website traffic levels are descent? If so, we can help you get that number up. I can have a member of our support team contact you and help with some specific, proven adjustments they could make for you so you can receive more inquiries. You also noted the problem of answering. If slightly less than half your chats turn into sales, maybe in addition to increasing the number of chats you're receiving, improving your ability to answer is also worthy of addressing. The number of inquiries you receive is (of course) tied to your dealership's availability - a prospect can only talk to a salesperson when they are there to answer. Of course there are many ways to make your dealership more available whenever prospects want to reach out. If you're having trouble manning the chat, there are ways we can help. Right now you answer the chats yourself, you could also have our virtual automotive team back you up. The cost is inexpensive relative to the sales. They are chat pros with a proven track record of success. Imagine doubling, tripling or quadrupling your results next month with a few minor adjustments. Please reach out if interested, okay? Aaron
Christopher Murray
Aaron, My whole philosophy of running my store is to eliminate, as much as possible, expenses especially to vendors. Here is why: Pick up any issue of Golf Magazine, get out your calculator and put two columns on a piece of paper; one titled Cost the other Strokes Saved then read every advertisement, fill in the appropriate column then total them up. You wind up with a six figure spend and negative strokes! Imagine getting on the golf course after spending $100,000 and expecting to walk off the course after 18 holes with a negative 86? That is the world we small stores live in.
Aaron Hassen
Christopher, Your point is well taken. I respect that each store has to do what is best for the store. You know what I'm about to say here...With all due respect, if you gave us 30 days and allowed us to optimize you in the ways I described, it's true, you might spend a few hundred dollars more than you are now, but if your chat sales doubled, tripled or (God forbid) quadrupled during that test month, I don't think you'd revert back. As you know, Contact At Once! is month-to-month, so you have that option if you chose to try it. Having said that, I understand that you have to weigh the cost/reward among many other factors. Aaron

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