Back to Basics (Post Covid-19)

As of this weekend it is two months since we went into lockdown, over this extended period of time we have pulled together a lot of content about best practices and how to spend your time in lockdown. While we can’t predict the future it is clear that when (if?) the lockdown and isolation periods end, the Automotive industry will restart and when that happens is your business ready to learn?

What is normal?

There is a lot of talk about a new normal, or not knowing what normal looks like, and this is a scary thought. Have businesses realised that they can survive and even thrive with the majority of their workforce working remotely? Does this mean households only need one car not two? Ok, this is slightly exaggerated thinking but it does make you wonder what is going to be the norm.

What do we know so far; the industry is working hard to move some of the customer journey online. From simply booking a test drive online, to fully transactional websites where customers can agree finance, sign the deal and have the car delivered to them in the following few days. This is undoubtedly the way the industry is going to progress and some would say, not before time. 

The sector will start to see the use of eCommerce KPIs, conversion funnels and more traditional basket/checkout journeys. Alongside this we will see the return of the key APIs that the industry used to measure, Cost per Lead (CPL) and Return on Investment (ROI). 

Due to the strength of an aggregator in the market the key focus of recent years has been a volume based strategy, page views of a vehicle details page. Simply put the thinking was/is, more page views equals more leads and sales. More views, higher stock turn and more showroom footfall. Now while this still rings true is it an appropriate measure now that we know dealership visits are dramatically down over these last few years. Stats tell us that car buyers are visiting dealerships, on average, 1.1 times before purchasing a car. 

What does the future look like?

Firstly, we don’t know and would stress that anyone claiming is, at best, guessing. That said if we assume that the car buying journey is moving online and the aforementioned KPIs start to become the measure of choice, then we can also discuss how to measure this. 

Secondly, if we do make that assumption then it must be realised that not all channels were born equal and you can’t simply measure one against the other. However, it will allow business to start assigning values to each step of the funnel and therefore start to understand how to appropriately measure cost and return. 

Our advice

Get back to basics, measure each channel on its own merit and understand that some channels are purely for driving conversion. Email, for example, is a great medium for simply keeping in touch with past, current and future customers so there may be very few of them that convert at that stage. 

With this in mind we have produced a number of guides and templates to help you with measuring some of this information and hopefully helping to better understand some of the more technical aspects. These can all be found within our new Carsnip Accelerator content hub.

Over the next few weeks we will continue to post content like this and if you have any particular pain points in your digital journey, why not contact us to arrange a free consultation session with a member of our highly knowledgeable digital team. You can find out more about this service here – Carsnip Digital Consultation.

About Carsnip

Carsnip is the UK’s largest used car search engine, with over 500,000 dealer sold used cars across the UK. We operate a natural language search engine, to help you find your perfect used car, and narrow down the choice by what’s most important to you.

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