The UK’s recovering economy is boosting consumer confidence, with 44% of motorists looking to change their car next year, according to consumer research from motoring.co.uk.
Motoring.co.uk managing director Terry Hogan will be sharing the company’s latest research to help dealers identify areas they need to address to take advantage of improved consumer confidence.
Hogan will open AM’s Hit For Six Conference, an event tackling hot topics in six key areas for dealers – new cars, used cars, aftersales, finance, insurance and digital.
Taking place at the Cedar Court Hotel on November 19, Hit For Six includes a host of top industry speakers such as senior adviser at the Financial Conduct Authority David Gagie and Hitachi Capital managing director Gerald Grimes.
Hogan explores response times to enquiries, the showroom experience and post sales events which all come together to determine firstly, if an enquirer will purchase and secondly, if the customer will return.
Hogan said: “Our research shows if someone is contacted in less than 24-hours, they are more likely to purchase with one to 12 hours being the optimum response time.
“Staggeringly, there are still dealers out there who are not responding to enquiries and anyone who responds 48-hours after the enquiry was received has blown it; the car-buyer has taken their custom elsewhere by this time.”
While the showroom experience is undoubtedly a prime factor in the decision to buy, motoring.co.uk’s research identifies the post sales events as key in retaining customers. Motorists who are retained for service work are 12-14% more likely to buy another car from the retailer in the future.
He added: “New car registrations are at an all-time high since the downturn but it is the market which is driving these sales despite the fact that as an industry, many of us have not changed our ways. I think the new and used car divide is still prevalent with sales teams focused on the higher margins offered by used at the detriment of the new car customer whose purchase, in the short term, offers less return.
“These new car customers, however, are essential for the lifeblood of the dealership in terms of both service work and future used car stock. If you don’t look after them, your competitor will and there are plenty of dealers who are delivering an exceptional customer service as soon as an enquiry is made and it is these businesses which will continue to succeed and make the most gains in the current recovering economy.”