Derren Martin, Senior Car Editor, CAP
The used car market – before, now and the future
Opening the conference, Martin will draw on the wealth of information from CAP to set the scene in terms of current market influences, insights and trends which are affecting prices,andhow it compares to the market inprevious years. Martin will also take a peek into the future and using market analysis provide predictions as 2015 draws to a close and we head into 2016. Influences such as the rise in new car registrations and part-exchange vehicles which have kept the used car market buoyant this year will be looked at including the possibility of a higher number of used car vehicles affecting prices towards the end of this year as well as the increasing pressure on dealers’ used car margins.
Paul Hill, Chairman, National Association of Motor Auctions
The impact of auction trends and best practice on used car profits:
This session will show how adopting best practices such as pre-sale preparation will ensure auction vehicles sell quickly and more profitably whilst understanding auction trends will help dealers better gauge the market and continually evolve their used car strategy to stay ahead of the game. Hill will draw on the wealth of data from NAMA to show how dealers can make more money from auction vehicles such as preparing them in line with industry standards. He will also provide an overview of the current used car market including indicators this summer which showed a decline in values in several sectors reflective of high stock availability and how holding out for price instead of reacting to the market is a false economy. Whilst the overall market remains balanced and positive, Hill will highlight how slight changes can have a massive impact if dealers fail to follow the market.
Neil Addley, Managing Director, Trusted Dealers and Founder, JudgeService Research
Interlinking customer reviews, customer service, retention and profit:
Customer retention starts the moment a prospective customer makes an enquiry about a vehicle. To really understand customer loyalty, dealers must fully grasp the trends in the marketplace and their own business including key drivers like speed of response. Working with some of the biggest dealer groups in the UK, Neil has established the truth about genuine customer loyalty and the importance of managing customer reviews, which will help determine if an enquiry is made in the first place, as well as a direct link between customer satisfaction and profit. Around 40% of so-called ‘lost’ sales are not lost, but can be enticed back into the business with the right approach to customer service and communications. This session explores the link between customer retention, customer service and managing customer reviews to encourage people to return and recommend and how successful implementation can increase sales and profitability.
Professor Jim Saker, Director of the Centre for Automotive Management, Loughborough University
Is it time to create a new customer service model?
Customer satisfaction is pursued with vigour across the industry, but satisfaction, says Professor Saker, is a weak emotion and happiness does not a loyal customer make. Consumers can access a vast amount of information online and will consider an ever widening number of purchase avenues, meanwhile, trends such as the imminent return of PCP funded new cars to the used car market and how dealers manage the process will have an impact across the business. This session dissects the varied influences which determine customer satisfaction and urges the industry to stop measuring satisfaction as it is a weak indicator of repurchase intention as well as being artfully circumnavigated to simply net the best score to secure the manufacturer bonus. Professor Saker will explore how to rethink customer service, such as using numberplate recognition software that allows a receptionist to greet people by their name as they walk in or gleaning individual information from social media to engage in more meaningful conversations with consumers, as well as comparing automotive methods with those of other industries andlooking at news ways to measure feedback.
Lee Manning, Digital Marketing Manager, Perrys Motor Sales
Digital innovation to boost used car sales?
After netting three digital gongs at this year’s AM Awards, including Best Use of Television and/or Video, this session provides an insight into the importance of going back to basics and taking a 'customer first' approach to digital in any used cars strategy. Manning will also outline the group’s digital journey which has seen its digital presence develop and continually evolve. Manning will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of a range of social platforms with an emphasis on YouTube, which was quickly recongised as a primary source for customer information from providing product information to changing the public perception of car dealers, and how it has helped shape its approach to sales and consumer engagement. Perrys uploads an average of four videos a month to YouTube with a total of output of more than 200 high-definition videos, which have attracted 2,004,116 views and clocked up 3,163,175 minutes watched.
Steve Jackson is chief car editor at Glass’s
An integrated business approach will boost future used car performance?
Dealers will need to adopt a smarter and more holistic approach if their used car operations are to remain successful into 2016 as factors such as the increasing number of vehicles returning to the market following the growth in PCPs impacts values. Pontin will explore some of the market influences as well as looking at how dealers should integrate their new, used and fleet strategies to ensure the right balance of stock is featured on forecourts. As more stock comes onto the market, dealers will need to turn stock faster to maintain profit margins, even if that means selling at a lower price. Pontin will show how the trend for faster stock turn is gathering pace and how stronger manufacturer remarketing programmes, which incorporate vehicle repatriation particularly for fleet, will see their dealers perform better in the used car market.
Andrew Brameld, sales director, Barclays Partner Finance
The finance consumer’s online journey
Our headline sponsor explores how the buying process is changing for consumers and what this means for the motor industry. Just as consumers have largely moved to the online arena when researching their next vehicle, increasing numbers of car buyers are practically pre-qualifying themselves for finance before they visit the dealership. Brameld highlights ways in which finance providers can provide online tools to assist dealers in meeting consumer expectations such as beacon technology, which is in use in its banks and will soon be applied to automotive retail, whereby information customers have entered