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70 Plate launch & Covid-19 – Car Dealerships set to suffer the ‘perfect storm’

With vehicle sales down a staggering 42 per cent on last year, car dealerships are working hard to bring customers back and there’s nothing like a sale to get customers back through the door. It is predicted that when the 70 plate vehicles launch next week, buyers will see discounts of up to 20 per cent at dealerships, which is great news for customers but presents dealerships with a huge challenge.

Many car dealerships are already experiencing higher call volumes as dealerships are now asking buyers to call or text to make an appointment before viewing a car in order to adhere to social distancing rules.

Add to this another spike in calls due to the discounts being offered on new vehicles and this could represent the perfect storm.

With such a large increase in expected call volumes, it’s likely that sales staff will be taken away from customers on the shop floor to deal with calls and it’s also likely that a large number of customers on the phone will not be able to get through. This not only is set to have an adverse effect on sales at time when dealerships need the sales the most, but also could badly affects the customer experience and damage the brand.

Outsourcing companies are well placed to help with any increase in calls. Lemon Business Solutions, based in Stockton-On-Tees, a leading 24/7 outsource partner have identified a significant increase in demand for their contact centre services from car dealerships.

Martin Anderson, Managing Director of Lemon, said:

“Since March, the way we buy cars has changed significantly. We have found a number of issues within the motor industry that we have been able to help with. For example, we found that not all sales leads were being followed up due to the increased strain on salespeople.

By bringing in additional support from a dedicated customer service team, the team on the floor can focus on face to face sales and existing appointments, rather than fielding calls, emails or SMS messages. We help dealerships to keep their sales experts where they should be – dealing with customers on the shop floor.

Our work has already resulted in helping a North East dealership to triple their number of sales leads, as we work to ensure not one inbound enquiry is missed. This is a triple win, not only for Lemon but also our client and the North East economy.”

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