Tomera Rodgers on September 10 2021

How Dealerships Can Overcome New Challenges

Dealerships continue to face new challenges brought on by the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent trading restrictions. Overage stock, product shortages, restricted showroom access for buyers and many other factors have caused dealerships to suffer. Even now vehicle retailers in general are still facing some significant barriers before they can begin rebuilding a stronger sustainable and profitable vehicle business.

 

Lack of new vehicle production posed huge challenges to recovery. Even though vehicle demand grew past the pre-pandemic levels, manufacturers are still unable to keep up. This is largely due to manufacturers' continued struggle with social distancing restrictions and reduced staffing levels. In addition, supply chain problems have resulted in OEMs facing difficulties obtaining semiconductors and other parts.

This disruption to production has caused buyers to experience long wait times for their new car. The trickle effect then impacts used car dealerships since people are keeping their cars for longer making stock acquisition more complicated. Financially speaking, emergency measures such as cuts to business rates, the furlough scheme and frozen fuel duties have been invaluable. But this support is ending and dealers may need more sustained support to turn stock and profitability. 

All vehicle retailers will need to make their own internal commercial decisions. It's important that dealerships see the full market picture with a 360 view of their stock and the global market to promote their business successfully. Three very important key elements dealerships must examine for successful competition and compliance are:

  • Personalization

  • Editorial manipulation of data

  • TCF (Treating Customers Fairly) guidelines

A recent industry survey found that some dealers are still worried about online buying statistics indicating more buyers are choosing digital shopping as opposed to showroom visits. Additionally, almost a quarter of dealerships are concerned about stock availability and not getting a reduction in business rates.

To compound matters even further, improving customer ‘fairness’ is the driving force behind the FCA’s new rules. It introduced changes to the commission disclosure that dealers now need to understand and comply with. In general, they are very transparent about the rules that all businesses must implement certain practices by the end of September 2021 toward treating all customers equally and fairly. 

These changes will make buying a vehicle more transparent for customers but the timeline adds further complexity for dealers at an already challenging time. However, dealerships and other vehicle retailers can rely on their partners and vendors for support toward overcoming the imminent challenges.

National lockdowns have encouraged dealers to rethink how they can survive remotely. And with insurtech and clever AI use on the rise, these changes can be implemented with minimal stress. 

Retailers need to be able to see the full picture of the vehicle market. They must be able use the information to strategize and obtain those quality customers in a trusted way. More importantly, access to digital products that can help achieve success is paramount. 

Cazana’s data and insights help customers transform their business into an effective profitable machine that can withstand changes to customer buying behaviours, new federal regulations and other challenges in today’s vehicle industry.

For more information on how Cazana data can support your business strategy while attracting and keeping new customers, contact the team today.


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