With the ongoing shortage of chips impacting the supply of new vehicles, many dealerships risk disappointing their consumers if they aren't keeping up with demand. If you're relying on your current stock to make up your sales, we have some tips for bringing in the right prospects for your remaining stock.
New Vehicle Shortage May Last
With inventory supply being the No.1 issue in the automotive sector right now, industry analysts predict that approximately 719,000 fewer new vehicles will arrive on the market this year in North America than was previously predicted.
The driving culprit for the shortage in new stock is the shortage of semiconductor chips which power many components to today's vehicles such as fuel injectors, infotainment, and safety systems. These chips can't be made just anywhere, either.
Chip plants are highly advanced, clean, dust-free facilities that have to be retooled to manufacture specific kinds of chips. This process can take up to six months to complete before chip orders can be filled, and is part of the reason for the crunch on automakers right now.
The other is the unpredictable nature of the auto industry itself, coupled with a global pandemic.
Had the auto industry not halted orders for chips as shutdowns impacted factories, we might not be in this position. But, the outcome of the pandemic on consumer auto sales has been anything but predictable. Sales rebounded more quickly in 2020 than most expected, leaving a growing demand for cars that has yet to be met.
When the industry began to rebound in mid-2020, automakers found themselves at the back of the queue for chips. Manufacturers had already moved on, retooling plants to produce chips for the now more in demand, and more profitable, consumer electronics market producing things like game consoles, laptops, and desktop computers, which saw a surge in demand.
The end of the chip shortage isn't quite clear yet, but many automakers won't see orders even begin production until late 2021 or beyond. There were two million fewer vehicles sold in 2020 compared to 2019 sales due to COVID-19.
Are You Keeping up With Demand?
What all this likely means for your store is a lack of new inventory, and possibly a lack of the most desirable used inventory. As new vehicle production declines, the resulting increase in prices is leaving many consumers wading through a selection of used cars that are making them rethink buying at this time.
If your dealership is turning over new trade-ins before they've had a chance to cool while older models gather dust on the backlot, meeting your customer's demands and moving your current stock may be a balancing act. You can meet that demand head-on if you're marketing to the right pool of buyers.
Consumers In the Driver’s Seat on Sales
These days, prospects want more autonomy in the car buying process, but there's not a lack of people who still want to come into your showroom. This makes the experience that much more real for the customer – maybe it's that new-car smell! Whatever draws people into your doors, customers expect the dealership to be able to continue the process they likely started online.
This means being able to meet the prospects wherever they are in the process. One way to do this is with a customer-first marketing approach, and that's what we can help provide at Auto Credit Express.
Our dedicated BDC call center is prepared to provide the first-call contact to get your inventory moving. We initiate customer contact and follow the prospects through their journey communicating with them at every step. From first call contact to final contract, we make your job easier so that all your sales staff has to worry about is sales!
Our BDC representatives prep leads for their first meeting by verifying relevant information, setting STIP expectations, and setting first meeting appointments for you. Plus, we monitor lead quality to ensure you're getting the right buyers for your store!
Looking for More Prospects?
If you're not in on the game, now may be the time to look at subprime prospects. Subprime consumers are a loyal market base that spreads word-of-mouth sales and tends to turn into repeat customers once they find a dealership they like. Getting these prospects in the door right now can seem like a challenge, but Auto Credit Express can help.
We've been a leader in subprime lead generation for over two decades and we want to help you build the loyal client base you're looking for in these unprecedented times.
Our Social Media Marketing Solutions can bring in the prospects you're looking for to move stale inventory. Many buyers are in need of a vehicle right now but aren't looking to pay the rising costs of new vehicles. This is putting consumers with better credit at the forefront of the consumer base right now and leaving some subprime borrowers without many options. If you have some diamonds in the rough that would be a good fit for subprime borrowers, now is the time to get the word out.
Our dedicated social media marketing campaigns use Big Data relying on our more than 20 years of special finance consumer experience, with proven results. We target highly engaged consumers with both short and full-form applications and can create up to 10 unique ad versions for you.
Ready to Grow Your Consumer Base?
If you've got the lenders to work with subprime consumers, we've got the prospects you're looking for. To find out how to engage the consumers you might not be targeting yet, simply reach out to us at 888-535-2277, or fill out our contact form online and one of our experts will be in touch!