How to Gain an Undeniable Advantage: Drive More Sales, Leads & Calls from Your Existing Website Traffic! (PART 5)


How to Gain an Undeniable Advantage: Drive More Sales, Leads & Calls from Your Existing Website Traffic! (PART 5)

TRANSCRIPT: Let’s talk about today’s consumer real quickly. You might be saying, “Hey Steve why do I have to know? Why do I have to learn about today’s consumer? I just want to know how to get more leads through my website?” Understanding how today’s consumer differs from those just five and 10 years ago, helps you refocus your websites on maximizing all conversions.

Now, we’ll talk quickly about the millennial buyer and what I want to you to understand about the millennial buyer is what does she want? What does this millennial buyer want when buying a car? What do the experts say she wants?

You know what the expert says she wants, get this I was at training, an OEM training, and this millennial expert was talking to all the dealer principles in the room, and they were taking copious notes and he said, “The millennial buyer wants.” You may want to write this down, “All the information so that they can make an informed decision before buying a car at your dealership.” Really? And somehow he doesn’t. Right. She wants all that information, but he doesn’t want all that information.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a baby boomer, it doesn’t matter if you’re a millennial or if you’re anything in between, everybody wants all the information so they can make an informed decision before buying a car. See that’s why millennial studies are stupid. The answer is because they can. They want all these stuff because they can get it.

The other reason millennial studies are stupid is because the term millennials covers a 20 year spread. Today that means someone whose 16 to 36 years old is a millennial. I can tell you that a 36 year old has a whole lot more in common with a 56 year old, than they do a 16 year old. And so that means that a 36 year old millennial has more in common with a baby boomer than they have in common with 16 year old fellow millennial.

Now, there’s a great study out there from driving sales that tells us that 99% of consumers when they start they start the buying process expect a hassle. 99% of call buyers expect a hassle when they start the process. When we talk about todays’ consumers it’s not about the millennial buyers, it’s about the connected buyer.

Everybody is online. Everybody expects the exact same thing. When they’re online and about to buy a car. When we look at the connected buyer it’s important to understand the ways things have changed over time. Okay.

In 2004 a company called DME Automotive found that the average buyer visited five or more dealer lots before they bought a car, but by 2014 that it had dropped to 1.6. A separate Mackenzie Study from last year showed that 68% of car buyers visited two or fewer dealerships before they bought a car. Now why is that important? It’s important because it means they have all the information. They have everything they need to buy a car before they show up at your dealership lot, and they’re learning that online.

So there are two great studies out there that support each other. One is from Driving Sales, and one is from Autotrader and these two studies basically say the same thing. They say that 61% of buyers make their very first contact with you when they walk on your lot. Only 39 % pick up the phone and call you, do a chat, do a text, send in a lead before they buy a vehicle from you. This is important as we talk about today.

So, that’s the reason when we talk about what a conversion is today we’re not just talking about the 39% that submit a lead, but we’re also talking about that 61% and the things that you need to do to get more of that business. Now, let’s start talking about the 39%. I love the 39%. These are the typical conversions that we’ve always thought of today.

Those are the form leads, those are the calls, those are the chats.

Now why do I love the 39%? Because if you have great processes you can win here. You can win the 39%. With the 39% you have an opportunity to shine. You can do things like the perfect appointment. So, I like the 39% because I can control the entire process. Right? I can control it from the beginning. Can I control the up that just shows up to buy a car?

You know I can to some extent, but I can’t be as prepared. I like ups, the 61%. But I love the 39% because I get a chance to ensure that they have a VIP experience. That’s what they will rave about. They’ll rave about that VIP experience. I cannot do that every time with the 61% because I don’t know what they want. I can’t have the vehicle cleaned, gassed, parked out front.

What’s the strategy to get more of the 39% to buy their car from you? Well, the strategy here is to cast a wide net, and there’s a big movement out there called the ‘Do it yourself’, or the anti-lead movement. And those ‘do it yourself and anti-lead’ movement folks are gaining momentum. You know Autotrader was sorry… AutoNation was there for a short period of time when they weren’t going to use any third parties now they’re back in the fold.

The fact of the matter is that you can’t do it all yourself. The ‘do it yourself and the anti-lead’ movement folks cannot cast a wide net. Not everybody goes to your website and not everybody who goes to your website is going to fill out, get an e-price form. There are different things, different kind of forms, and different calls to action that are going to appeal to different customers.

If you’re in the ‘do it yourself’ model or the 100% ‘anti-lead’ movement model, you just need to ask yourself, which buyers can I live without? Because you’re going to be living without some buyers unless you’re willing to cast out that wide net. Now, there are three remaining considerations when we talk about the 39% and your website, and the one goal. What is the one goal of our website once they get there?

First goal is to attract the visitor. Second goal was to convert them into a buyer. We’ve got to have three considerations that we thing about when we’re talking about that 39%. First we’ve got to balance lead generation and the annoyance factor. Okay. We can’t be in their face constantly with 62 chat drop ins while they’re trying to search for cars on our site. We’re going to drive people away.

We need to balance lead generation verses information. We give them everything they need to know, everything without ever gathering any information from them. There’s a good chance they’re going to take what we’ve given them and go to our competitors. Now we also need to look at the info that we require on the forms. The required fields on the forms actually make a difference.

In fact, there was a good study by Autobytel I think last year, that shows that there’s this huge drop when you require a phone number on your forms. That people abandon that form at an enormous rate.

Now that’s a third party site, but dealer sites, we see the same thing. It’s going to vary based on form type but you want to make sure that you don’t require too many fields because there really is some drop off when you’re looking at required fields. Really these things are required, these are live forms from a dealer site. One of the left is a GM site and we see this a lot with the GM websites. And so GM dealers out there you want to go out and make sure that you don’t, you’re not requiring these fields.

This one I’m trying to get an e-price, and guess what it asks for my address, my city, my state, my zip code. If you really need those things then leave on the form, okay, but chances are you don’t really need my address. You really just need my name and my email address and if you want my zip code, great, but why are you asking for my physical address? It’s too personal.

How about this one? Another dealer we found recently. They want to verify the location or the equipment on a vehicle and I just maybe want to verify where it was at and so I completed the lead form, but it wouldn’t let me submit it because the message was a required field. I had to put a message in there.

Listen, all you want is my name and my e-mail address, and my phone number. You should leave it at that. Don’t require the message in forms like that, it just doesn’t make any sense. How about this one? The VIN. Who knows their VIN? This is what happens typically when you do your own trade appraisal forms on your website where you don’t use a third party trade tool. You create these gigantic forms.

We’re going to see two pages from this form. This page requires the VIN. I don’t know my VIN. Now, I know where to find it but I’m in the car business. Most consumers don’t know where their VIN is. And then one more form on the same… One more page on the same form requires a home phone. My question is, what is a home phone? I haven’t had a home phone in five years.

If you’re going to require phone fine, write best phone, phone, but you don’t need to require a home phone.