Don’t stop your customers from buying with a bad Digital Retailing to showroom handoff


Shoppers are looking for the least friction possible when shopping on your website or VDP’s.

How easily and quickly can they start the buying process once the buying trigger goes off in their brain?

Traditionally, dealers have just collected leads and then moved the customers to the showroom for the in-person workflow.

In today’s new world, customers are looking to get much more of the buying process done before entering the showroom. The difficulty for dealers has been that the handoff of the online flow has come with miscalculated pricing, missing information, and more work for the sales team. Basically, it has been easier to bring the customer into the dealerships than allow them to advance the sales process online.

However, this creates a start / stop buying process for the customers, interrupting their buying process and creating friction that often translates into a failed buying attempt.

A good “Digital Retailing” flow is much more than placing a “buy now” widget button on your website and working it as a standard lead. It is a buying flow that leads your customers (and sales team) through the entire purchase, starting online, flawlessly transitioning to the showroom, and finishing with the vehicle’s delivery to the customer.

Online, the customer should be able to jump in at any desired point of interest. 

If they want to know, “What is my trade worth?” this should be a function inside the buying flow, so they never have to re-enter trade info into the buying flow. The same goes for your credit application. Allowing the customer to start where they are most interested and following a “personalized” path is the best way to keep them moving down the sales path.

From the dealership and employee standpoint, it’s critical to see where in the process the customer is and what they have done. This gives you an understanding of how they are thinking about the sales transaction. (Credit worthiness, trade value, monthly price focus) The transition from online to the showroom also needs to be flawless.

Every action the customer took, VIN, Credit App, Trade Info, home address, etc. needs to be visible and accurate for the dealership staff to make the showroom transition as smooth as possible. A great handoff starts with dealership software recognizing the customer as a digital transition. This allows the sales staff to pick up exactly where the customer is in the sales process and prevents any re-keying of the data by the sales, F&I team, and the customer. Customers hate having to give the same information multiple times because your systems don’t sync. 

Another key feature that keeps the customer moving through the buying process is automated lender approvals online. When customers can be quickly approved, they become mental owners of the vehicle. Mental owners usually stop reviewing other vehicles (and websites) and start planning when they can pick up their new ride. Therefore, they are much more likely to come to your showroom to finalize the sale than a typical online lead.

If you are interested in having CreditIQ get you set up for the smooth transfer of online Pencil Perfect Contract Ready Digital Retailing to your showroom, please reach out to us at – sales@creditiq.com.

Kent Mihlbauer
Author: Kent Mihlbauer

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