Auto Sales Training For The Digital Age: How Dealerships Use Big Data To Increase Business

car agent congratulate the family on buying car

The world of automotive sales is changing. Where consumers would once head to a car dealership to look at various vehicles and listen to information provided by an auto salesman, today’s customers usually do tons of extensive research online beforehand. This provides them with a clear idea of what they are looking for, even before they step foot into a showroom.

Increasingly, this trend is also giving both large and small dealerships opportunities to find new ways to reach their potential market, identifying likely buyers and targeting them more efficiently. By analyzing search and page view statistics, dealers are increasingly able to compile detailed reports about customer preferences and buying patterns.

For auto sales training students, big data looks set to play a huge role in their future careers, and having some understanding of how data is used in car sales can give them a big advantage as they look to get ahead.

How Auto Sales College Graduates Can Collect Data for Their Dealerships

If they have the budget for it, dealerships will often employ local third party marketing companies to compile data about their customer base. They may also choose to purchase data from large analytics firms, such as Experian or HIS, who specialize in data for the automotive industry.

Auto sales training graduates could also be expected to do in-house research for dealerships once they start their career, by scanning market info provided by sites like Carfax and Edmunds. In addition, many dealerships now focus on gathering as much information about their customers as possible at the point of sale, to build a profile of their existing client base.

Dealerships can get clearer pictures of their customers by collecting online data.
Dealerships can get clearer pictures of their customers by collecting online data.

Marketing In Auto Sales Training: Identifying Your Customer Demographics

Once dealerships have the data they need, they should be able to segment their customers into a few key demographic groups. Having a clear picture of exactly who is buying their cars can be used to advertise more effectively using targeted campaigns.

In addition, dealerships can use data to retarget previous customers who are likely to upgrade, and refine their finance packages to appeal more to their market. It also allows them to identify key local demographics where they are underperforming, and adjust their strategies to increase market share.

Why Big Data Can Give Franchised Dealerships An Advantage In Car Sales

While some smaller dealerships are only just starting to use data, auto sales college graduates who find work with franchise dealerships will probably find that the process is central to their business. Large auto companies have a big advantage when it comes to big data, as they can use their superior marketing budgets and extensive dealership networks to compile more detailed analysis.

General Motors, for instance, has a dedicated analytics department which it uses for everything from deciding on new locations to identifying specific consumer behaviors, such as how far a customer is willing to drive to buy a car. This analysis has led to the company refocusing its advertising strategy, putting more money into low cost local advertising instead of traditional avenues like primetime TV ads and billboards.

All GM dealerships use data to maximize sales.
All GM dealerships use data to maximize sales.

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