Shoppers don’t have patience for a bad online experience. 64% of them find customer experience more important than price.
With how fast ecommerce technology advances, automotive brands can give customers a one-of-a-kind experience with deep personalization, fast customer support, and the ability to find and purchase products in a few simple steps.
It’s not just that these features are available, it’s that customers expect them. There’s so much noise online, and you only have seconds to capture a user’s attention from the moment they land on your website to the point of checkout and beyond.
For automotive businesses there are a few ways to offer a great experience while simultaneously tackling the rapid industry growth. Consider the following:
- Leverage modern features like 3D modeling and augmented reality to give customers a clearer understanding of your product details.
- Use Shopify Scripts to automate discounts and promotions, pre-calculate shipping costs, add a local delivery option, and set up free shipping thresholds to build trust with customers online.
- Minimize any friction for customers to checkout with Shop Pay, which lets them save their email address, credit card information, and shipping and billing data, so they can checkout even faster on your website the next time they visit.
- Use Shopify Plus’ bulk uploads and multi-level product nesting features to add and organize all of your product SKUs, so you can showcase your entire product catalog online with categories, images, descriptions, dimensions, product reviews, and more. Then, allow customers to input their car information, filter results, and be guaranteed that a product will fit their needs.
- Send order confirmations, product updates, and other important information through the easy-to-use Shop App, allowing you to communicate with customers as needed and in real-time.
Shopify allows businesses to run nimbly. You can make a change, add a discount code, or update a catalog in minutes. Modern ecommerce requires moving quickly and the payoff is worth it. Companies with a customer experience-first mindset drive revenue 4-8% higher than the rest of their industries.
Simplify inventory management and product details
Vehicles and parts companies have a unique challenge when it comes to inventory management and automotive warehousing. Vast product catalogs make organization for backend management and customer experience critical.
Performing bulk uploads and using multi-level product nesting to add and organize all of your products is vital functionality for your team. It must be easy and painless, so you can showcase your entire product catalog online with categories, images, descriptions, dimensions, product reviews, and more.
Using the functionality within Shopify Plus, UroTuning allows customers to select their vehicle, filter results, and be guaranteed that a product will fit their needs. In addition, in such a tactile industry, modern features like 3D modeling and augmented reality give customers a clearer understanding of your product details.
Create a smooth checkout process.
Once your customer has added a product to their cart, they expect a simple checkout process. Consider automating discounts and promotions with Shopify Scripts to make checking out easy. You can also pre-calculate shipping costs, add a local delivery option, and set free shipping thresholds to build trust with customers online.
Being able to check out quickly is a vital component of modern ecommerce. Companies with a customer experience-first mindset drive revenue 4-8% higher than the rest of their industries. Minimize friction for customers by offering accelerated, one-tap checkouts like Shop Pay on your online store like 3D Car Care. Shop Pay allows customers to checkout in seconds by saving payment data in a safe and secure way. Once they’ve checked out, you can automatically send order confirmations, product updates, and other important information through the Shop App.
Use personalization to win and retain customers
In the past few years, the necessity for ecommerce surged. Shoppers discovered the simplicity of buying online, and businesses who were able to scale up quickly started reaping the rewards.
One important differentiator is personalization through dynamic emails, website experiences, advertisements, and content. Now that customers have experienced personalized online shopping experiences, they expect them across the board.
91% of customers say they’ll shop more with brands that provide relevant recommendations and offers. Additionally, 63% of them will stop buying from a brand that doesn’t use good personalization tactics.
For automotive businesses, personalization is crucial. Many shoppers don’t know exactly what their vehicle needs, and even if they do, it’s difficult to find what they’re looking for from brands that carry thousands of SKUs. By starting with what customers know about their vehicle, you’ll simplify the purchase process to increase conversions and avoid costly shipping mistakes.
Worried about asking customers for their information online? 64% of consumers say they’re happy for businesses to save their purchase history and preferences for a personalized experience. In addition, 74% of customers feel frustrated when website content isn’t personalized.
Beyond your website, there are various tools you’ll need to do personalized marketing. Harnessing a platform like Shopify that has a large app store means you can find tools like the below to drive customer engagement without an in-house developer:
- Loyalty apps reward customers with points, VIP tiers, and referral incentives to build long-term relationships and give them a reason to shop with you again.
- Email marketing, so you can easily sync important customer data and automate personalized email flows with relevant recommendations to different groups of customers.
- Email capture tools to collect contact information and data and use it to send personalized campaigns. This will build a new customer relationship over time, driving more purchases.
Merge online and offline to sell everywhere
Scaling your business to meet the demands of a growing automotive industry doesn’t stop at selling online. Your in-person sales should work with your online presence to provide customers with various channels to discover, research, and purchase vehicles and parts.
The automotive businesses that merge their online and offline stores are already winning. One survey found that businesses with omnichannel strategies drive 91% higher year-over-year customer retention. Also, omnichannel customers spend 4% more in-store and 10% online than single-channel customers.
By connecting these channels and syncing your data between stores, you can create a seamless shopping experience for every individual—no matter which channel they decide to visit next.
Doing this is easier said than done. Managing customer profiles, inventory, and money can be a challenge if you don’t have the right technology.
I think doing this is easier said than done. Managing customer profiles, inventory, and money can be a challenge if you don’t have the right technology. When you’re looking for an omnichannel point of sale, make sure it integrates with your online store so you can sell anywhere.
Here are a few features to look out for:
- Buy online, exchange, and return in-store: Accept exchanges for purchases made online or at another location, and your inventory is updated instantly.
- Track inventory: Stay on top of your inventory and assign products to different sales channels and locations. Inventory counts should automatically update when an order is fulfilled from any source.
- Product collections: Categorize products by type, season, and promotions. Use smart collections to automatically sort products based on vendor, price, and inventory level.
- Customer profiles: Create customer profiles with every in-store or online purchase during checkout. This lets you create personalized marketing campaigns based on a customer’s vehicle, purchase history, or order value.
- Order history: When customers shop online, or in-store, their order information is automatically synced. This means your staff will be able to track what products they’ve purchased in the past and provide even better service in person, while your customer will be able to manage their order history over time in case they need to repurchase or have questions about specific products.
- ERP Integrations: Connecting your systems simplifies sales and inventory management. Look for software that has multiple ways to integrate your ERP for a frictionless experience.
Remember, your retail and online store should build on each other. They should feel similar, look similar, and tell the same story. With the right POS, the front-end and back-end can be connected easily, creating a visually unified brand and a single source of truth for customers.
Cutting-edge technology is at your fingertips
We know you’re tired of hefty development costs and managing your website on a platform that can’t support your needs. With Shopify Plus, you’ll have access to a dedicated partner network of agencies, web developers, and app integration experts to help make the transition seamless.
Ensuring your business is optimized for online, offline, and everywhere in between is critical to offering a frictionless customer experience. From integrations to data, and easy backend functionality, Shopify Plus has everything you need to take your vehicle parts and accessories business to the next level.
We’re here to help you now and in the future. Talk to one of our automotive ecommerce experts today.