We all know the value of a great BDC. At progressive dealerships around the country, technology-driven BDCs are replacing 3rd party lead providers, generating trade-in opportunities, and making a concrete impact on the bottom line.
But even the sharpest, most tech-savvy BDC reps can’t realize their potential if you don’t give them access to remote appraisals.
Today’s consumers expect options and convenience in the car buying process. They want the ability to choose which steps in the sales funnel they do at home, and which steps they do at the dealership in person.
Because their trade-in offer dictates how much they can spend, it’s actually often the first step in the journey for many consumers. Failing to realize this, and failing to give your customers a convenient remote appraisal option, can hamstring your BDC and limit their effectiveness.
Here are 3 ways remote appraisals can help you land more trade-in opportunities through your BDC:
#3 - Revive Dead Leads with Remote Appraisals
Most BDCs understand the importance of contacting leads in a timely manner. But sometimes you receive a lead too soon in the customer’s buying journey. You might reach out to a lead as soon as you get their contact information, even though that individual may be nowhere near making a final buying decision.
If your initial contact is too soon, the chance that something will go wrong goes up dramatically. The lead can go cold, or get lost beneath the stack of new incoming leads. You can turn the customer off with too many follow up contacts. Every day that passes is a day that the customer can be attracted by your competition’s inventory and promotions.
Having a remote appraisal process gives you a valid and compelling reason to reach back out to a lead after weeks or even months. If the customer has been shopping, she’ll likely already have a benchmark against which to judge your trade-in offer. And if they’ve simply been delayed, then your offer of a remote appraisal might be just what they need to get their shopping experience jump-started again.
#2 - Generate Trade-In Opportunities in the Service Drive
Your service drive can be a great place to source leads, if you approach it correctly.
When a customer receives a large service estimate with an aggressive sales rep waiting nearby, they can feel taken advantage of. Many dealers have learned this lesson the hard way.
A remote appraisal process allows your service techs to generate trade-in opportunities on their own, without directly involving your sales team until it’s appropriate to do so. When customers walk away from a big service bill, you can give them instructions for how to do a remote appraisal on their own at home. Approached in this way, the trade-in appraisal is perceived as an additional option, rather than a pressure sales tactic.
#1 - Promote a Local “We Buy” Program
It’s no secret that the largest automotive retailer on the planet earned that spot by proclaiming: We’ll Buy Your Car Even If… you know the rest.
Remote appraisals don’t just give the ability to compete with that national program - they actually give you an advantage. You can provide the same convenient service, but you can provide it to customers from the comfort of their own driveway.
This has become a much bigger factor over the past year, as consumers look for ways to handle all of their retail shopping from home. Your local “We Buy” program can be conveniently tacked on to most of the marketing messages you share - opening up an entirely new market who might not be actively looking for a new car.
There’s no denying that technology is changing our industry, and the events of 2020 have only served to expedite those changes. Smart dealers are finding ways to implement new technology across their entire operations - and the BDC is no exception.