Marwa Kaabour, Head of Marketing & Corporate Communication at Al Masaood Group, on how digital innovations are driving auto dealership forward.
The state of global affairs is changing, probably at a faster speed than what a speedometer could track. The future is uncertain, and many businesses are worried about where the road ahead leads. To better illuminate their journey, businesses have turned to digital technologies to seek advancement and predict future trends. Various industry verticals have already experienced significant shifts in processes amid a rapid technological revolution and the emergence of high-tech tools such as voice recognition, biometrics, artificial intelligence (AI), and big data. These technologies have disrupted almost all industries, including the automotive industry, impacting not just the OEMs in terms of their manufacturing processes but also automotive dealerships in terms of sales and services. While digitalization is set to further increase productivity, enhance efficiencies, reduce costs, and spark innovations within the automotive segment, dealerships can adopt many technologies to bring themselves closer to their customers, even if that means conversing and transacting with them on screens.
For the longest time, automotive dealerships have been harnessing the transformative simplicity and convenience of innovation while keeping the human aspect at the core of their transformation. In the automotive world, utilizing newer innovations that bring dealerships closer to their customers is a great advantage and results in immense benefits for proactive dealers. But this does not come easy because it requires a lot of courage, time, and willingness to enter into risky investments. If there is one lesson to take away from the current Covid-19 pandemic, it would be this: digitally-prepared businesses have higher chances of surviving the global lockdown, managing to stay present and close to more customers, and safeguarding customer interest and trust in their brands and services while protecting the welfare and productivity of their employees.
Furthermore, while consumers can now enjoy the perks of driving amazing intelligent vehicles, which can ensure their safety on the roads, plan their course of travel and play their favorite playlist, they also expect high-tech services from dealerships selling smart vehicles.
Considering the shift towards innovative car services, customers are now expecting more in terms of choosing and purchasing a vehicle. Thanks to cutting-edge innovations, they can enjoy and experience new perks when availing of technology-enabled car services, including easier tracking and maintenance solutions, that make their experience more remarkable.
Al Masaood Automobile has full trust and confidence in current and future digital innovations and their ability to fundamentally change the way people purchase and maintain their vehicles. Because of this belief, the company has invested in new technologies and modern equipment that can help it serve its clients faster and more efficiently. These significant investments are the result of listening and responding to the needs of Al Masaood Automobiles’ customers.
In fact, its adoption of technological innovations has led to new initiatives designed to offer convenience and efficiency to its customers.
Take for instance the company’s introduction of a full interactive live showroom experience through Connected Live Interactive Xperience (CLIX). The initiative allows sales personnel to hold video conferences to present a virtual preview of the latest in the company’s diverse portfolio of vehicles and related products. CLIX enables a customer to experience the car fully, although virtually, as the company’s sales team is trained to replicate real-life experiences through a video chat-based sales approach.
Customers can then decide what model they like, have it delivered to their homes for a quick test drive, and later complete the purchase via the use of a safe and trusted electronic payment system.
To provide its customers with peace of mind, the company has also partnered with some of the country’s leading banks to develop its own online auto retail financing scheme. The scheme helps customers facilitate their buying process by obtaining financing requests online without having to visit the showroom or the bank.
The company also developed its Al Masaood Auto App to help address the needs of its clients. Through this app, users can make service appointment bookings, track the progress of the maintenance services, or even create requests to have the car delivered to them using their smartphones.
In addition, the company was the first Nissan dealer in the region to offer an interactive e-commerce website. The portal is being positioned as a one-stop online shop that allows buyers to directly and conveniently purchase either new or pre-owned Nissan vehicles of their choice from the company. The website has been developed to boost its e-commerce capabilities and showroom solutions, which include real-time visualization of all vehicles for sale using any kind of mobile device, anytime, and anywhere.
The adoption of these digital innovations will decide the fate of tomorrow’s auto dealerships, thus making it more of a necessity than a choice. Auto dealerships like Al Masaood Automobiles are taking a bold step forward by focusing on integrating digital technologies and strategies into their operations. In the end, the key goal of utilizing these innovations is to ensure an engaging and enjoyable purchase experience for customers.
The world now lives in an age where the demand of tech-savvy customers for smart, convenient. and round-the-clock car services is rising. Auto dealerships that can meet these modern requirements and service them in a way that exceeds expectations are well-positioned to take the market lead and be ahead of their industry peers.