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Going offline: do traditional dealership display methods still work?

Samani said: “Flags, banners and marketing material are still  essential. Without them, the showrooms/used car displays look very much like a car park. You need to get the attention.”

However, dealers do need to ensure it generates the right attention and stays on the correct side of local planning restrictions. Newspapers recently reported the case of Reg Payne, the owner of an independent dealership, West Country Car Sales, in Devon, who was forced to remove bunting hanging over his forecourt after councillors objected.


Point-of-sale showroom materials

AM reported last year that Citroën was focusing on the digital customer experience and introducing online brochures, but they have no intention of getting rid of the traditional paper brochures.

A spokesperson for Citroën said: “Brochures are available as hard copies within the dealership and online to download. Both are important customer aids and both will continue to be used for the foreseeable future.”

Nigel McMinn, managing director of Lookers, said: “Like newspapers, magazines, and notices, there will always be a place to have non-digital point of sale.

“I might be old-fashioned, but I think it still adds value to make cars stand out, look interesting and create opportunities for us to discuss things with customers”.


Car ramps and turntables

Car ramps and showroom turntables may also seem a bit old-fashioned in an age of iPad-toting salespeople and self-service showrooms, but they’re still an important part of even the most futuristic of current showrooms.

Ramps may not be hi-tech, but they serve a function; to raise a car and display it in a way that helps it stand out from the others on a forecourt, especially to passing traffic.

Turntable supplier Movetech UK is confident that the more traditional items are here to stay, even with advancements in technology. Customers may have shown initial interest via modern means, but confidence is still built with a ‘personal’ relationship said Tim Entwistle, managing director of Movetech UK. “Products like ours help the dealer promote themselves, and their offerings, whilst that relationship is developed,” he added.

Dealers are using turntables in particular in new and inventive ways, not just to show a car for sale in a showroom, but using them to promote offers at events or even as a handover display. Entwistle said: “While it is a traditional tool, it has evolved with time with it being adapted to enable controllability via a computer.”

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