It’s almost that time of year when your dealership takes stock of its inventory and prepares for 2016. This time of year is when your dealership offers huge year-end deals and customers hope to snag one of the last 2015 models for the best prices. While the deals themselves will be a major reason why your lots will clear, there are numerous ways to ensure you have a successful holiday-selling season. Here are some tips to help move 2015 inventory to make way for more vehicles in the New Year.
- Reexamine Your Current Inventory
Before you begin any end of the year sale, you should conduct a comprehensive evaluation of your current vehicle inventory, specifically the average amount of time a car spends on the lot. This key metric will indicate car demand, since cars that spend a longer period of time on the lot tend to be the least popular. By identifying these unpopular cars, it will help prepare your marketing and sales tactics to make these vehicles more attractive to customers. Your dealership’s goal should be to sell the unpopular vehicle inventory as quickly as possible. After all, these not-sought-after 2015 models will be even less popular in 2016.
- Start Promoting Digitally as Soon as Possible
When you’re competing not only with other dealerships, but nationwide retailers as well for holiday-spending dollars, you need to get the word out about your sales as soon as possible. While traditional advertising in newspapers and TV commercials will garner attention to your dealership attention, going digital and harnessing the power of social media will bring in a new generation of buyers to you. That being said, social media should become a big part in your dealership’s marketing strategy. Establishing a social presence on Facebook and Twitter is becoming more important for all businesses, especially around the holidays. Offer rewards, discounts and giveaways to your followers and fans, and be sure to feature high-quality images of inventory to keep the point-of-sale involved.
- Update Your Website and Ad Content
Your website is the window of your dealership, and it’s crucial to update it with compelling content such as reviews, videos, blogs and inventory photos. By doing this, it will boost your website traffic and help highlight specific cars in your inventory (like your unpopular 2015 models). All of your website content should match your broader marketing efforts of the vehicle manufacturer, but also offer a local twist. Focus your ad and website content on how it fits into the consumer lifestyle by providing advice, reviews and new car features.
- Utilize Your Online Data
If your dealership already has an extensive online presence, you should have plenty of data on customer/visitor behavior to help drive your holiday sales decision-making. For instance, you can see the popularity/demand for a car model by analyzing the visitor statistics and social shares for that particular model’s pages on your website. This website data should not only inform your decisions for this year and beyond, but also have an influence on your local marketing efforts.
BONUS TIP: Perfect Your Customer Service
Your dealership should always strive to offer exceptional customer service all year round. Remember, many businesses’ customer service reputation often spreads virally across social media, which can then set your dealership apart from your competitors. Many customers will search for your dealership online to see your reviews, so your dealership should also try to maintain a positive and strong presence and reputation on review websites such as Yelp and Google.
The end of the year is an important time for all car dealerships nationwide. Make the most of the holiday season this year and move as much 2015 inventory as possible in order to start the New Year off on the right foot. With these tips and your drive to set your dealership apart, you can expect a very jolly selling season.