Transforming Dealership Operations: From Chaos to an intuitive Car Configurator
Product Configurators are transforming the way businesses engage with their customers. These modern digital platforms offer a self-service experience, like car configurations, that makes product selection quick and effortless while also optimizing the sales process. For companies aiming to provide a structured customer journey and a different level of product experience, integrating a product configurator is a strategic imperative.
Specifically, in the automotive industry, the stakes are even higher. Custom-designed configurators are setting new standards for customer engagement and operational efficiency. These modern tools allow clients to experiment with their vehicle choices and view the results on screen in real-time. Moreover, online configurators can be seamlessly integrated with existing business systems like ERP and CRM. This integration enhances overall efficiency across both production and sales pipelines.
When a leading automotive brand sought to restructure its sales process across its entire Polish dealership network, Right Information was the partner they chose. We took on the challenge with a holistic approach. Our team developed a set of solutions that organized the client’s data and revolutionized the sales experience.
For years, the client’s Polish dealership network grappled with a lack of standardized information. Consequently, salespeople relied on their own notes for car configurations, pricing, and discounts, stored randomly in Microsoft documents on their PCs. As a result, without a unified offer template, each salesperson generated inconsistent documents, even within the same branch. Additionally, there was no standard sales model for dealing with customers either. This disorganization led to a chaotic sales environment, complicating the process and increasing the risk of errors.
All these multifaceted challenges triggered the client to make the decision to restructure and automate the entire sales process. The primary aim was to implement a comprehensive solution to streamline internal operations within the dealership network and external customer interactions. A system that would synchronize everyone with a single, trusted source of information.
Our developers also needed to build strong logic into the software, which added to the complexity of the project. After that, a product configurator is a sophisticated tool that requires an in-depth understanding of the product’s parameters and characteristics from those who program it. Our team had to design robust enough logic to accommodate a wide array of specific customization options. At the same time, they needed to ensure the end product remained viable for production.
Thus, to support the client with defining the data, we had to introduce an information management system that would unify product data in the sales network.
Additionally, the online car builder had to be integrated with the company’s existing CRM and website to ensure a smooth user experience and efficient data flow.
Right Information proposed an innovative solution—an advanced web car configurator tightly integrated with the client’s CRM system. Moreover, recognizing that the client had no master data management system, we extended the platform to include a robust supporting back-end application, a Product Information Management system.
Our experienced team of engineers first developed and then implemented the Product Information Management (PIM) system tailored to our customer needs. PIM served as the single source of truth for various types of data, including:
- Basic information and technical parameters
- Common car elements like engines, drivetrains, and transmission gears
- Equipment versions categorized by common elements
- A wide range of color options, complete with visualizations
- Accessories, from rims to interiors, all categorized and priced
- Various insurance, financing, and purchase methods
- Rules and exceptions regulating the configuration process
Our new PIM system became an integral part of this solution, enabling the client to manage all these components efficiently. What’s more, dealers can use the PIM system to generate accurate and up-to-date posters for sign holders, showcasing information about car models on display.
This centralized data hub enabled the seamless development and deployment of the advanced car configurator app.
Online Car Configurator
Right Information built an intuitive online car customizer that serves as much more than just a digital tool. We designed our online car configurator solution to be user-friendly for both customers and the sales team.
Our car configurator software is equipped with features that allow for real-time updates. This ensures that both sales agents and customers always have access to the most current information. Finally, there’s no need for manual data look-up anymore. As a result, the chances of errors are reduced, and overall efficiency is increased.
The vehicle configurator’s robust architecture allows for applying multiple customization options. Customers can delve into intricate details, selecting from various color choices, engine types, powertrain options, and even comfort and safety features.
The visual interface lets users experiment with color schemes, wheel sizes, and interior materials, providing a fully immersive experience.
But the configurator doesn’t stop at the car’s physical attributes. It also offers an extensive range of accessories, from sat-nav and sound systems to extra wheels, cameras, and sensors. The online tool provides options for extended warranties, insurance, and financing. It shows real-time calculations (top right corner box) and applies available discounts.
Furthermore, the system assists users through the configuration, making the process easy and efficient. Users can click on the “Get More Info” button to learn more about specific features.
This is particularly helpful for those unfamiliar with the company’s full range of offerings.
Internally, the configurator serves as a powerful sales tool for dealers. Accessible on various devices, it enables sales agents to pull up customer configurations easily, facilitating quicker and more accurate proposal generation.
Our tool gives dealers the flexibility to craft different sales strategies, enhancing their approach to customer engagement. The configurator’s structured steps serve as a roadmap for sales conversations, making it easier for agents to guide customers through the selection and purchase process.
The configurator also enables the creation of personalized sales experiences by allowing agents to customize cars in real time.
Its structured approach has the added benefit of accelerating the onboarding of new sales agents. New staff can quickly become proficient by following the configurator’s steps, thereby reducing the learning curve and enabling them to start selling more efficiently.
The solution provided by Right Information transcends the capabilities of a standard car configurator. It’s a comprehensive, maintenance-free sales optimization platform. Our approach involved a deep analysis of the client’s existing sales procedures. The configurator’s design was aimed at achieving both immediate impact and future scalability. Working closely with experienced staff members, we defined best practices for the sales process and boxed these insights into the software.
Implementing our custom-designed car configurator and PIM system has had a transformative impact on the client’s business. To begin with, the responsive design of the web application enables users to configure cars across a range of devices, including PCs, smartphones, and tablets. As a result, this enhanced accessibility provides a shopping experience customers have never had before.
More than just user-friendly, the system’s seamless integration with the client’s CRM automates the saving of each configuration. Every salesperson can now see specific lead configurations on-screen.
Dealers can easily retrieve these during customer visits, significantly expediting the sales process. This feature alone has reduced the time required to generate an offer from an average of 55 minutes to just 1-2 minutes.
The intuitive interface of the configurator also serves a dual purpose. It elevates customer satisfaction while reducing the training required for the sales team. This efficiency gain is bolstered by sales process automation. Today, the client’s sales team can handle a higher volume of customers and sell faster.
Additionally, our car customizing software has opened new avenues for up-selling and cross-selling. The sales of car accessories have hiked up, marking a significant uptick in this revenue stream. The system’s data analytics capabilities provide invaluable insights for future sales strategies, offering a level of detail that was previously unattainable. This data-driven approach redefines the client’s inventory and sales planning.
In summary, our solution for the car dealership has revitalized its internal and external sales processes, elevated the quality of service, and taken the customer experience to new heights. The addition of self-service capabilities has led to more engaged customers and a more efficient sales force. A uniform visual standard across all documents adds a final touch of professionalism.
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