Is Visiting the Dealership Still a Critical Part of Your Purchase Journey?May 8th, 2018
The ability to do most of daily business and social activities from the palm of our hands via our smartphones is truly an amazing thing. Think about it, for many of us it doesn’t seem that long ago when none of this technology existed! Now we’re more connected than ever.
We can literally shop for anything we need and never leave our homes. We can conduct thorough research and gain valuable insights on products we’re interested in, in a matter of minutes (if not seconds). The goal of many retailers is to provide as much convenience as possible for their loyal customers.
The automotive industry is constantly trying to find that perfect mix of online convenience and purchase integration. If consumers are doing most their automotive shopping research online why not just move the entire purchase online as well? I know there are some out there that would happily conduct their entire car buying process online if they could. I want to use this post though to point out a couple reasons why you should still carve out time for a dealership visit and how it can be invaluable after purchase.
1. The Test-Drive – I feel that no amount of online research for your next car can replace the value of test-driving those vehicles on your radar. Remember for most of us this will be the second most expensive purchase we will make (behind a home or condo). If you’re not a homeowner, or intending to be, this will be the most expensive purchase you will make. Getting behind the wheel will allow you to properly assess cabin size, comfort and sight lines. When seated in the driver’s seat can you easily access all dashboard controls and see clearly through all necessary angles? Is the driver’s seat going to be comfortable enough for you if you’re someone who takes long road trips or spends a lot of your time commuting? Is the drive “quiet”, is the engine too loud, disabling your ability to properly hear what’s going on around you? Ask the store manager what their own test-drive check list is. See what they come back with.
2. The Service Department – Assess the service drive and waiting room at a dealership you may be identifying as a desired destination. Do they post live statuses from the service bays for customers to see? Does the waiting room look too crowded? That could identify two things; the first obviously, is maybe the service department isn’t moving people through their appointments at a reasonable pace. On the other hand, it could also tell you that many customers prefer servicing their vehicles at the store. Ask to meet the Service Manager/Fixed Operations Manager if you visit a dealership for a test drive. Ask them if they have any advice on optimizing your service warranty after purchase. Are they friendly? Do they seem helpful? These are simple things but they go a long way as you will be interacting with these people and their staffs post purchase.
Build your research and shopping checklist. A lot of what you need to get done can absolutely do online but make sure you make time to visit a dealership as your search narrows. It will be invaluable, cultivating a solid relationship between you and your dealer of choice!
We always strive to ensure our customers get a buying experience unlike any other. If you have any questions or need any advice please do not hesitate to reach out. You can expect honest, no nonsense answers without a pressured sales pitch. Better yet, stop by the dealership and ask for me directly. We’re closer than you think at 2215 Dundas St E, at the 427, in Mississauga!