South Africa’s largest car site, Automart, believes that their unique mobile and online trader platform allows dealers to operate more efficiently – and cut down costs dramatically. The secret, says Automart product and marketing manager Edna de Sousa, is to anticipate customer needs and evolve accordingly.
“Automart moved online because our customers required a smarter, faster sales tool,” says De Sousa. “Being pioneers in this field has garnered wonderful buyer confidence in the brand and what we do, but it the convenience and transparency of the site that keeps our dealership base coming back for more.”
De Sousa explains that Automart is one of the few online auto sites that offer full mobile integration with the site, across all devices.
“Everything that a potential buyer sees on the site is mirrored on mobile, and the mobile user interface is one of the friendliest on the market,” says De Sousa. “We want to make it as easy as possible for users to shop for cars online.”
The platform’s ability to provide their dealers with real-time analytics also proves invaluable in terms of costs savings.
“Any dealer that makes use of our platform can constantly pull live stats from the site, on their own, without having to request it from us,” says De Sousa.
“This means that he or she can review how many cars has been sold, which make and model sold the best, who his or her customers were, and how many leads approached them over the course of a month, six months or even a year.
“Naturally, this information is not only invaluable when it comes to making more strategic buying decisions in the future – which can cut costs dramatically and avoid over- or under-stocking the showroom floor – but also in terms of identifying buying behaviour and seasonal trends.”
Of course – interpreting these patterns and using a digital platform doesn’t come naturally to all dealerships, which is why all Automart advertisers receive thorough training once they sign on to the platform.
“We don’t believe that a customer service and troubleshooting should just live behind a desk – we constantly send dedicated teams to our customers to upskill and train them in order to get the most of the platform.
“If we notice that a customer isn’t using the mobile aspects of our offering optimally, we pay a call and revisit the subject if need be. We invest heavily in CRM to make sure we’re not just providing a platform, but actually helping customers make the most of it.”
De Sousa adds, “In the end, we are not just providing a dealership with another means to advertise his cars – we are also empowering them with information that they can use to improve the way they buy and sell cars across the board.”