The biggest industry event of the year for car dealers – the NADA Convention & Expo – kicked off this week in San Francisco. Hundreds of exhibitors are showcasing their equipment and technologies while multiple educational workshops take place, teaching auto dealer aficionados everything from the “Catch and Keep” customer strategy to a session on “Trust and Transparency: Data Privacy Management.” Automotive dealerships are in one of the most competitive, customer-centric markets in existence, so it’s at conventions such as NADA where dealership owners and sales managers get the opportunity to partake in crash-course workshops focused on areas in which their dealership(s) or management may need improvement. If you manage or work in an auto dealership, you understand that your business phone system is one of the tools that can make a significant difference in not only achieving personal success, but also in helping keep customers happy.
In the automobile industry, the main goals include managing inventory, making sales, and gaining revenue. These goals are achieved by two main objectives: accuracy of information and customer service. For most businesses, especially auto dealerships, customer relationships involve a range of interactions that together achieve (hopefully) positive results. The ability to capture leads and close a sale is firmly wrapped up in seamless communication through your dealership’s CRM and business phone system.
Digium’s Switchvox UC system has been used in auto dealerships for years, not only because of its flexible features that works nice across multiple locations, but because it’s also an affordable system. Implementation of Switchvox is simple and can be done with little or no IT staff. Here is a quick look at the features within Switchvox that can help some of the key players within your dealership:
General manager:The auto dealership GM ensures the profitability of the dealership by overseeing the various departments, incluiding sales and financing, the service and parts center, and the business office (accounting and administration). Switchvox provides several benefits to the auto dealer GM, including:
- CRM Integration: Extend API lets you build integrations with customer relationship management software so when you receive calls you get “pop-up” messages with important caller information and notes.
- Mobility: Switchvox provides several options to help you stay productive whether at your desk or on the sales lot; you can work form anywhere, and from the mobile device of your choice.
- Reporting: You can schedule reports to be automatically emailed to you to track marketing campaigns or the productivity and efficiency of any of your dealership’s departments.
- Call Queues: These allow you to control the call flow of the dealerships. Queues enable calls to be delivered to the correct department or employee with little or no staff interaction.
- Reduced Cost: Switchvox combines the communications of all your dealership locations into one. This can allow all incoming call traffic to be handled by one receptionist, instead of paying unnecessary salaries to several. Also, due to increased visibility, more locations can be managed with fewer managers.
Sales manager: Vehicle sales managers are responsible for organizing a team of sales people and devising strategies for the team to use to maximize revenue and customer loyalty. If this is your role, Switchvox provides several benefits to let you be more efficient and effective in your role:
- Training Tools: Switchvox provides several easy-to-use, yet powerful training tools, such as listening in on calls, being able to speak to the employee over the phone without the customer being able to hear, and helping troublesome calls by “barging in.”
- On-Hold Messages: As a sales manager, you have full control of the messages or music being played to customers while on hold. These recordings can be relaxing music or a promotional message highlighting a new car’s features. These messages can easily be changed out or rotated as often as you’d like.
- Call Recording: Managers have the ability to record calls to ensure that employees are handling situations as they were trained to do.
- Reporting Tools: Track incoming, outgoing, completed, and abandoned calls with scheduled or on-the-fly reports. Sales managers also get insight into the value of a dealership’s marketing programs (such as Google Adwords) thanks to detailed reports on inbound phone numbers.
- Switchvox Mobile: This softphone app allows the sales team to use their personal devices as if they were their using their office desk phone. The customer only sees the dealership’s caller ID information, which keeps the salesperson’s personal contact information private, and also allows the brand of the dealership to be persistent in all customer communications.
Receptionist: The receptionist is the director of first impressions and handles everything from greeting customers in person and on the phone, to collecting payments and scheduling appointments. Here are some of the benefits offers this auto dealer team member:
- Call Control Interface: The Switchboard allows the receptionist to have call control interface on their desktop. This web-based call dashboard increases worker efficiency by allowing the receptionist to click-to-dial, drag-and-drop a transfer, and instant message any employee, regardless of location.
- Personalized Call Rules: The receptionist has the flexibility to set which of their phones ring, in what order, and what time of day. They can set up calls to automatically ring to their desk during work hours, to their mobile phones after hours, or to go straight to voicemail when needed.
- Instant Messaging: IM allows a receptionist to quickly communicate with sales or service staff as well as managers, without the need to call.
- Email Integration: Switchvox easily integrates with Microsoft Outlook to allow receptionists to dial customers directly from their contact list or from an email. They can change their presence, see their last calls and voicemails, and much more, all from the Outlook interface.
For an extended list of Switchvox features for every role at your dealership, download your free copy of our guide Switchvox for Auto Dealerships. And to all our friends and customers at NADA this week, we hope you enjoy the show!