Today’s automotive customers visit dealerships equipped with more knowledge than ever before about car makes, models and pricing. In-depth customer knowledge means your sales team doesn’t have as much of an opportunity for negotiation and instead, needs to focus on fulfillment and the customer experience. To address this shift, many dealerships are turning to the latest technology to create the best customer experience possible.

Kia is one automotive brand at the forefront of dealership technology. In recent years, Kia dealerships have tested various futuristic technologies such as artificial intelligence and holograms to make the customer experience more efficient and engaging. If you’re looking to improve the customer experience at your dealership, consider some of the ways Kia has benefitted from being an early adopter of dealership technology.

Artificial Intelligence

Kia is using artificial intelligence to streamline the process of scheduling service appointments. Leveraging technology from Conversica, several Kia dealerships are using an artificial intelligence virtual assistant to help manage and schedule service appointments. The virtual assistant has a wide range of capabilities, including: prompting recent buyers to schedule their first service appointment, automatically reaching out to customers who haven’t brought their car in for service in a year, directing customers to an automated scheduling tool, and soliciting feedback from customers after each service appointment.

Automating service scheduling and feedback saves both dealerships and customers time and money. Using a virtual assistant means customers no longer have to call into the dealership – and potentially wait on hold – to make an appointment, or keep track of when they need to make their next service appointment. For dealerships, the virtual assistant helps service workers spend more time on actually servicing cars, rather than spending time on the phone tracking down customers to schedule appointments or collect feedback. In the long run, this can help increase revenue by enabling your dealership to process more service requests.

By creating a more efficient customer experience, you can increase the likelihood of your customers returning to your dealership – rather than taking their business to your competitors – each time they have a service need. And in keeping customers engaged from a service perspective, your dealership will also be top-of-mind when it comes time to buy another car.

Holograms

In addition to rolling out artificial intelligence, Kia is testing holograms at two of its dealerships in Seoul, South Korea. The holograms enable Kia customers to virtually see a full range of models, change the colors of both the interior and exterior, open the hood and trunk, and view the vehicles from all angles. The technology is meant to be user-friendly and doesn’t necessarily require staff assistance, but Kia sales staff are readily available to help answer questions, educate customers, and ultimately close sales.

From a dealer’s perspective, holograms save space, and as a result, cost, as dealers no longer have to include every make and model on the dealership floor. This can be a significant cost savings for dealerships in Seoul and other densely populated, high-priced cities. The holograms have also proven successful in luring people off the street to see them in action. On the customer side, holograms enable customers get a better grasp on what different features look like on a full-sized vehicle, rather than simply selecting a color or other features from an online gallery or catalog in the dealership.

Testing out the latest technology not only helps improve the customer experience, but can also be highlighted in your recruitment materials to get potential employees interested in your dealership. If you’re looking for other ways to attract top talent, download our eBook on 5 Things the Best Dealerships to Work for Have in Common.

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