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Dealers need to keep it consistent for customers, CitNOW data to show

Logo for AM Live 2022Car buyers and aftersales customers need to receive a consistent experience online, in-store and across departments, CitNOW Group’s chief customer officer Carol Fairchild will tell delegates at next month's Automotive Management Live 2022 event.

Fairchild will draw on new research and data from across the CitNOW Group of companies to highlight the wide range of experience inconsistencies often at work in the same business when she delivers her session in the event’s digital theatre.

Customers are highly likely to receive vastly differing experiences depending on the communication channel and often the department they are utilising, according to Fairchild who will take to the stage at AM Live which takes place, once again, at Birmingham NEC on November 10th. Carol Fairchild CitNOW

She said: “Through our various companies, we see a common theme of customer experience inconsistency within a retail group and at individual business level. A customer will often have very different experiences depending on whether they engage via the website, by telephone or in-person in the dealership itself. 

"Once a customer transitions from a sales to an aftersales customer, they are often treated completely differently again. So, a person could have opted to be communicated with by email or messaging during the sales process and as soon as the time comes for their vehicle’s first service, they are expected to communicate by telephone.

“Such inconsistencies may sound minor or trivial but for time-poor customers who expect to be able to communicate seamlessly across all channels without having to provide the same information repeatedly or who want their contact preferences to be consistent from one department to another, it makes all the difference between a bad, good or outstanding customer experience.

“Even during a single customer journey, a car buyer may start at the group’s website and submit an enquiry, engage in chat either on the website or using a messaging app before coming into the showroom, yet they are likely to have a very different experience at each juncture.

“We are expecting our new research to help pinpoint the extent of the problem and we will explore how technology can smooth out the inconsistencies and help dealer’s deliver a genuine omnichannel experience.”

Volvo XC40 Recharge sale facilitated vi an online appWith research from Gartner showing only 4% of customers will use the same brand again after a bad experience, compared to 96% who say they will buy or return again after a good one, the importance of delivering a good and consistent experience across all channels and departments can’t be underestimated.

Fairchild added: “We talk so much about digital transformation when we should be focusing on transforming the customer experience and harnessing technology as an enabler of that process.”

AM Live is free for retailer and manufacturer delegates by booking a place at whilst CitNOW Group, representing all brands within the group portfolio -  AutoSLM, Auto Imaging, CitNOW, Dealerweb, Dealerdesk Quik, Reef, REALtime Communications, Tootle, Web1on1- can be found at stand C10.

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