When you hear the words Artificial Intelligence (AI) an image of robots, self-driving cars, and super computers probably enter your mind. However, we interact with AI in many ways throughout our day. Apps like Google Maps and Waze use algorithms to analyze traffic flow to inform users of delays. Uber uses similar methods to calculate ride prices and wait times for riders. Planes have used AI autopilot features since the early 1900s, and banking apps enable customers to deposit checks by deciphering and converting handwriting using AI. Machine learning and automation is all around us, and today more than ever AI can bring a lot of benefit to dealers.
Artificial intelligence is merely the ability for computers to perform tasks that normally requires human intelligence. Wondering how this concept can benefit dealerships? Here are four ways AI can put some processes at ease at today’s dealer showrooms.
An Effective Customer Service Experience
In small but efficient ways, AI is helping dealerships address customer service needs throughout the buyer process. Chatbots on the website are excellent ways to gain initial information from customers about what they are looking for and if they have an interest in talking to someone further. Dealerships are getting even more technical by installing AI programs that analyze phone calls dealers have with potential customers to help staff better understand what consumers are looking for.
More Targeted Marketing
Machine learning and AI can make marketing efforts more effective. There are programs dealers can use to automate email messages to customers who accomplish various tasks in relation to the websites such as looking at a vehicle, speaking with a customer service representative, or filling out a lead form. Web analytics can help dealership marketers understand who their target audience is, where they are located, and what their interest are. This makes it easier to automate ads that can reach their eyes.
Facilitating a More Efficient Service Repair Process
Many customers may not keep track of their car’s service needs, so dealers are often in the driver’s seat when it comes to reminding them when they need to come in for repairs. To make this a more streamlined process, dealers are utilizing virtual assistants like Conversica to reach out to car owners. The virtual assistant sends an automated email to customers to inquire about scheduling a service appointment. Interested owners are then transferred to a human staff member to handle the rest of the transaction. The assistant updates contact records, reaches out to customers who have not been in the dealership for a year for service repairs, and can even use OnStar to let customers know when their car needs work.
Taking the Guesswork Out of Financing
It is well-known that many customers may find the financing and loan side of car buying to be an overwhelming process. It is challenging for customers to decide on a car only to be told they may not qualify for it due to their credit history. Machine learning can help solve this longstanding problem. Instead of customers having to choose a lender when they walk into the dealership, they can already have a chosen finance provider based on their past credit history prior to their visit. This takes the stress and guesswork out of the financing process for dealers and customers alike.
Integrating AI and machine learning can seem like a daunting process, but the rewards outweigh the concerns. Dealers have a lot to deal with throughout the day, and a little automation can free up staff to handle situations that need their attention. Not only does AI make work easier for others, but it brings a level of analysis that would be challenging for human staff could not produce on their own. As long as dealers are open to learning new technologies and concepts and have the buy-in of staff, then AI can bring a variety of benefits to any dealership.