VenueVision, which provides high-impact, real-time digital media solutions to automotive dealerships, has just launched autoTEXT – a centralized texting solution that lets staff seamlessly connect with their customers, regardless of their Dealer Management System (DMS). This enables dealers to improve communication and service department productivity through more efficient and faster messaging.
Increasingly, customers don’t want phone calls. They want texts. According to J.D. Power’s Customer Service Index, 27% of customers with mass market brand vehicles, 42% of premium brand customers and 41% of younger customers want to communicate by text.
With autoTEXT, dealers don’t have to rely solely on staff mobile phones and costly cellular plans to communicate with customers. With autoTEXT, everyone has access to a centralized desktop system that sends and receives texts. Dealers can set a single number – or different numbers for each department – to manage texts from one place. Customers can text to request appointments or ask questions. Dealership staff can send service status updates, get repair authorizations, notify on service completions with payment options and more. Not only does the system streamline communication, it eliminates the cost of individual mobile phones and wireless plans.
TEXTING BUILDS RETENTION
Texting doesn’t just make communication better – it builds retention. In the J.D. Power study, only half of the customers contacted by phone said they would return. For those who received texts, that rate jumped to two-thirds.
“Poor customer communication remains the biggest obstacle for dealerships to overcome,” says Dave Hooper, President of VenueVision. “By improving the service experience, dealerships will also improve shop productivity exponentially and get full visibility on customer communications – this is a win-win for dealerships.”
Texts take a lot less time than repeated calls, phone conversations and voice mails. And it doesn’t just benefit service departments. Parts departments can use autoTEXT to notify on special order parts arrivals, and sales departments can create and confirm sales appointments or test drives, follow up with customer and answer questions.
autoTEXT packages start at $139/month per store, and are available to dealerships in Canada and the United States. Packages for unlimited users, unlimited data and optional payment capabilities through Mobile Cashier are also available. To start a trial or sign up for the starter package, visit http://www3.venuevision.com/automotive-solutions/autoTEXT. Dealers can try the 7-day trial by enrolling online and be up and running by the next business day.
VenueVision, which provides high-impact, real-time digital media solutions to automotive dealerships, has just launched its latest mobile innovation, Mobile Cashier, at Key West Ford and Kia West in British Columbia. Serving the New Westminster area, Key West Ford is the #1 new and used Ford dealer in British Columbia. Kia West, serving Vancouver, Burnaby, Coquitlam and surrounding Lower Mainland is the #1 volume Kia dealership in Western Canada.
Mobile Cashier is an express e-payment solution that sends dealer-branded notifications to customers when their repairs are done. Customers can click the provided link to review their service invoice and pay directly from their mobile device or PC. Resulting in faster checkout times at the dealership. Mobile Cashier boosts convenience, reduces the 5:00pm rush and speeds up the pick-up process dramatically. This allows dealership staff more time with customers to review work completed and make recommendations for future repairs.
Dealer staff give rave reviews
Andrea Backman Galasso, Dealer Principal at Key West Ford, says “What impresses me most about Mobile Cashier is the control it puts back in the customer’s hands. These days everyone is so pressed for time that every moment counts. From the customer’s perspective, 10 minutes saved getting the service invoice amount and getting it paid is 10 minutes put back into their day, put back into their control. I also like that the customers now have a preview of the amount. If they have any questions they can call or email before arriving for pick up, once again saving the customer time.”
As a service manager I am happy with how much it will improve evening pick-ups and enhance the customer communication flow.”DAN NORTHCOTE, FIXED OPERATIONS MANAGER, KIA WEST
“We are very happy with the launch of Mobile Cashier,” says Dan Northcote. Kia West’s Fixed Operations Manager. “Our service advisors are excited by the product because it takes very little extra work on their part. It offers our customers an added convenience that they can’t get anywhere else. As a service manager I am happy with how much it will improve evening pick-ups and enhance the customer communication flow.”
“We launched Mobile Cashier late last year and the response has been phenomenal,” says Dave Hooper, President of VenueVision. “Dealers love it because it’s an innovative way to improve the customer experience. Dealerships like Key West Ford and Kia West who stay ahead of the curve to provide the best customer experience, are far more likely to succeed in the competitive automotive marketplace.”
Designed with customers in mind
The new express e-payment solution is designed with customer ease-of-use top of mind. “From the dealership’s perspective, I really am impressed with the level of automation and how much information is pre-populated in the forms giving very little room for error,” added Backman Galasso.
"The automated billing and payment process takes steps off of our service advisors’ hands, freeing up time for other customer interaction."ANDREA BACKMAN GALASSO, DEALER PRINCIPAL, KEY WEST FORD
Backman Galasso says that at Key West Ford, Mobile Cashier helps with increasing staff efficiency. “With our large volume of relatively standard maintenance repair orders, the automated billing and payment process takes steps off of our service advisors’ hands, freeing up time for other customer interaction. While it is just one step in the service process, it is one that blends well into our goal of making our customer’s service experiences as easy and transparent as possible. Honestly, it is hard to believe that this isn’t something we’ve been doing for years!”
Mobile Cashier isn’t just for the service department. Every part of the dealership can take advantage of the easy e-payment capabilities. Parts departments can use PAY BY TEXT to allow customers to pay invoices collect for parts deposits. Sales departments can use DEPOSITS BY TEXT to collect new and used vehicle deposits faster. Even Accounting can do A/R BY TEXT to speed up receivables collection.
With Mobile Cashier by VenueVision, dealerships can offer easy mobile payment options for customers on the go.
VenueVision Media Systems, which provides high-impact, real-time digital media solutions to automotive dealerships, has just launched Mobile Cashier, an express e-payment solution for parts and service departments. Customers get dealer-branded notifications of repair completion along with a copy of their invoice on their smartphone, tablet or PC. This notification link allows customers to review and pay for their repair in advance of picking up their car.
“Mobile Cashier is an innovative leap forward for auto dealers and their service customers alike,” says Dave Hooper, President of VenueVision. “This express mobile payment solution allows service customers to skip the cashier line and pick up their vehicle at their convenience while drastically reducing the 5:00 pm rush for dealership staff. In the competitive, fast-paced automotive marketplace, great service with an emphasis on ease and convenience is vital.”
Here’s how mobile payment works:
- Once a service repair is complete and ready for pick-up, the customer is automatically notified by email or text. The notification contains an invoice and a link to the dealer-branded payment page. This page is pre-populated with the customer’s name, invoice number and invoice amount.
- The secure payment portal prompts the customer to enter credit card information. The transaction is then completed and notifies the dealer’s cashier of confirmed payment.
- The customer receives a text or email confirming payment and picks up their vehicle when convenient.
- Customers can access the dealer-branded Mobile Cashier dashboard from any mobile or PC-based browser without specialized hardware or software requirements. On the backend, Mobile Cashier is fully integrated with VenueVision’s service applications, enabling it to complete transactions in real-time.
Mobile Cashier offers an exciting opportunity for automotive dealerships to improve the customer experience, hence positively impacting a customer’s service perception directly on their personal smartphones. With mobile payment, customers don’t have to rush to pick up their vehicles before the service department closes. Additionally, service cashiers get a break from the ‘5 pm rush’. Customers can pick up their keys at reception anytime before the dealership closes – their service is already paid for. It’s a value-added service that everyone will appreciate.