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According to Autodata,17.6 million new vehicles were sold last year, setting a record for cars and trucks. One distinct group of consumers contributed an estimate 8.0 million units to that total: women buyers.

Dealers seeking to sell more to this critical market segment can start taking new actions and, in the process, collect data to improve the purchasing, service drive and shopping experiences for this powerful buyer.

By the Numbers
From our 2017 US Women’s Car Dealership Report, game changing data offers a new view of the car buying experience for brands rated and ranked by 4,653 women when ‘purchasing’ at their dealership.

  • Optimizing Sales – 54% go to 1 dealer; 46% of women shop at 3.2 dealers to find the right dealership “fit”
  • Enhancing Value Propositions – Women buy from trusted dealers with sterling reputations; 6 in 10 do not buy from the closest dealer
  • Increasing Customer Satisfaction – High Sales Advisor EQ is a No. 1 purchase motivator

Fuel for Thought Leaders
Certified Trusted Dealer satisfaction scores among women are on the rise with an outstanding cumulative score of 97.1 percent. Invariably, these stores are experiencing higher CSI, higher gross margin dollars, increased service visits, more loyalty & retention, and more reviews and better reputations.

The results are straightforward. Positive reviews from women demonstrate how car dealers are showing respect for women during the car shopping and purchase process, earning their trust, their business and long-term loyalty. It’s is a win-win.

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In today’s hyper-competitive industry, women buyers are crucial for dealer’s success. Almost 8 million new cars are being purchased by women alone. And, Certified Trusted Dealers are expanding their business to this powerful buying segment. In fact, these Certified Trusted Dealers have a cumulative 97.1% satisfaction score vs non-certified trusted dealers 85.5% satisfaction score. What a difference!

Women-Drivers has just compiled our annual comprehensive report on women’s Purchasing, Shopping and Service Drive trends, experiences and preferences.
Click for access to the 2017 US Women’s Car Dealer Report & Trends. Best business practices are included to elevate your female client experience to help your store achieve increased market share, sales and retention.

Here are some game-changing data points to keep in mind:

  • 45% of women purchase cars by themselves
  • 53% of millennial car buyers are women
  • 38% of women out-earn their husbands
  • 56% of women do not buy from the brand dealer closest to their home

What actions do you have in place or will you implement to be a destination dealership for women+families?

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BREAKING NEWS | 2017 US Women's Car Dealer Report

In today’s competitive marketplace, women buyers are crucial for auto dealer’s success.
The all-inclusive 2017 US Women’s Car Dealer Report shares trends, behaviors, preferences and experiences women have when Purchasing, Shopping and in the Service Drive.

It’s not enough to just ‘know’ women’s habits when purchasing a vehicle at a dealership. ‘Knowing’ doesn’t make a difference.

Dealers that are taking action to market, to engage and to set forth a plan of adding value when selling to women are the ones winning their business.

We measured Certified Trusted Dealers satisfaction scores. In this year’s report, we share best business practices to elevate the client and guest experience to assist you in getting out of your comfort zone. It’s up to you. Stay the course, or apply new ideas, practices and methods to achieve a higher market share, retention and loyalty.

DOWNLOAD 2017 US WOMEN’S CAR DEALERSHIP REPORT HERE

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Top 17 Items on Womens New Years Wish List

Below are the top 17 items on women’s New Year’s list when it comes to car dealerships and the service drive for 2017. Here’s an opportunity to add some new options to market and engage to the growing car drivers and buyers and expand your business.

At The Dealership

1. Buying a car in a relaxed, zero pressure environment.
2. Child care made available during the test drive and negotiation process.
3. A 3-day return program which instills a boost of buyer confidence.
4. Sales advisors with high emotional intelligence who have the capacity to recognize buyers’ emotions and guide the process accordingly.
5. Privacy when buying a vehicle. Preferably one that doesn’t include old grey cubicles.
6. A warm sales environment with aesthetics including artwork, paint, plants, and graphics portraying a balanced demographic.
7. A more balanced demographic among sales and service advisors.
8. Current, easy-to-find, authentic reviews showcasing how the dealership interacts with women buyers.
9. Dealers that offer seminars on the latest car technology, insurance savings, mobile apps, and other useful information.
10. Home and workplace test drive delivery.
11. Complimentary child car seat seminars and fittings. Talk about building customer loyalty.

In The Service Drive
12. Longer service hours to accommodate working women.
13. Yoga or work out room while waiting for car to be serviced.
14. Mobile repair dealership that will come to customers’ homes to do oil changes, put snow tires on, etc.
15. Loaner vehicles for women. This is the #1 requested item by women.
16. Kid-friendly play areas, café areas, and wifi are all huge perks.
17. A stop-in-anytime pass for free car washes. Great loyalty builder.

Engage More Women in 2017
Looking for ways to engage more women buyers in 2017? Click Here.

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Do emotions play a part in the process?

Car Buying and Emotions, Part I
Women shop and buy cars for a number of reasons, but regardless of the reason, emotions are involved in every step. The emotional range can start with excitement about the prospects of a new car, to apprehension when signing papers, to frustration when taking a car in for service.

Why Emotions Matter
During the buying process, your customers will experience a range of emotions. You know this. It is important to understand how these emotions ultimately end up reflecting on your dealership.

Women-Drivers.com has tracked the emotions reported by 3,105 women car buyers, and they are:

  1. Excited 55.7%
  2. Relaxed 34.4%
  3. Confident 30.7%
  4. Apprehensive 30.3%
  5. Nervous 25.8%
  6. Overwhelmed 20.1%
  7. Intimidated 11.4%
  8. Confused 8.6%
  9. Frustrated 8.6%

These percentages add up to more than 100% because respondents can submit multiple answers.

It’s key for your sales advisors to recognize and understand these emotions. They are a normal part of the buying process for any large-ticket item. What becomes important is the ability to discern if these emotions are helping or hurting the approach. Savvy advisors ask the right questions to see if the negative emotions can be minimized by assisting a female buyer to feel more comfortable with the decision being made.

For example, a buyer who is overwhelmed or confused can easily decide to stop the process before it is completed. Recognizing these emotions and taking steps to clarify any buyer’s questions can mean the difference between saving and losing a sale. A buyer’s frustrations can be mitigated by streamlining the sales and financing process to eliminate wasted time.

Emotions make up a large part of a shopper’s experience, and smart dealerships will learn to monitor and do what is necessary to keep the emotions on the positive side.

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Have you earned your bragging rights?

Does your dealership brag about your reputation? Do you constantly explore new ways to improve your interactions with customers and employees?

Brag Boards
Women rely on reviews 50% more than men and especially like reviews by other women. Reviews act as your 24 x 7 brag board by letting others hear the voice of your customer champions.

  1. Be sure reviews are front and center on your website and social media efforts.
  2. Don’t limit your reviews to only glowing comments or they will look pre-screened. Show how you readily solve problems.
  3. Post reviews in plain sight. A bulletin board provides a good way to reinforce your performance. Include reviews where customers will stop and pause, like in your service lounge.
  4. Encourage customers to write reviews about their visit. Let them know you are using their ideas to improve your ability to deliver outstanding service.

Explorations Boards
An exploration board is today’s “suggestion box.” An exploration board is very open and inclusive. Dealerships can start the conversation by using “what if” statements to get people thinking about specific topics, like:

  • What if each sales advisor sold an additional 5 cars this month?
  • What if prospects were immediately comfortable when they walked in the showroom?
  • What if today was the top selling-day of the year?

DOWNLOAD YOUR WHITE PAPER NOW:
ADJUST YOUR ATTITUDE TO ACCELERATE SALES

Here are tips for getting an Exploration Board started at your store:

  1. The board must be presented in a non-threatening way to gain participation from all. Using first names or initials can help keep the suggestions positive. Everyone’s participation is encouraged, and must be met with respect.
  2. Allow ongoing discussion of the ideas. Bring the exploration topics to staff meetings to encourage continuation of the conversation.
  3. Pick specific topics from the board and keep the discussion going. Turn suggestions into a new plan, adding metrics and goals. Post the results.
  4. Reward employees for participation. Let people know that their ideas can be brought to fruition.

Encouraging participation and showing the results makes a difference in your employees’ performance, and ultimately will drive more dollars to your store, boost morale and encourage healthy competition. Customers will feel that you are interested in their feelings and perceptions.

Employees whose ideas matter become happy employees, stay longer and interact better with customers. And that is really something to brag about!

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Increase Sales to Women Buyers by $6 Million

Women-Drivers.com is excited to bring you this white paper on how you can generate up to $6,000,000 in annual sales to women. Now is the time to strengthen your position and turn your dealership into a destination for the fastest car buying segment. The headlines are reading how business is only getting tougher. Is it really going to finish up at another 17.5 million unit year? How will your store stack up?

DOWNLOAD YOUR WHITE PAPER NOW.

This white paper enables dealers to train their sales team and help develop new attitudes and behaviors to sell more cars. The bonus tracking worksheet allows GSM’s and SM’s to measure female guests (ups), referrals, and sales to measure this growth over time. CSI and retention are improved, too.

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Women Buyers… Show You How they Really Feel

Women are where it’s at when it comes to buying cars! They are also more generous with car dealer review scores!

We are so excited to share with you the Women-Drivers.com slick new mobile site, now with emojis.

With the increased participation of dealers and reviewers alike, its paramount that we continue to deliver a website and mobile platform that are more relevant for both.

The company is unveiling an industry-first by allowing the user to choose from five emojis when reviewing their Purchasing, Shopping or Service Drive experience. Emojis are used everywhere and are a quick way of expressing feelings. This supplemental feature allows women to share their overall dealership experience. The five emojis users can choose from when reviewing their Purchasing, Shopping, or Service Drive experience are:

Other New Features include:

  • Snap a Selfie and #TagYourDealership
  • Top Certified Trusted Dealer comes up first in zip code search
  • Simple to Access Your Dealership
  • Easy to use interface to read or write a review

Did You Know?

Women are responsible for influencing 85% of all vehicle purchases. In 2015, 45% of women buyers reported they purchased their car by themselves. Get Your Edge Now

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Unprecedented, Yet Simple Tracking Worksheet Helps Build Your Business
There remains an untapped opportunity in your sales plan now to implement. This will make a huge impact just by tracking and measuring a few new metrics.

Follow this: While half of car buyers are women, and that percentage increases to 53% for millennial women. 1 in 3 women out earn their husbands.

But how successful is your dealership in converting women guests? How many guests actually buy? Are you aware how these buyers find out about your store? How can you grow what you don’t track and measure?

Tracking 5 Results to Analyze Success
Using our new worksheet*, track these 5 key stats each week and month:

1. Number of Female Guests: This statistic applies to a woman who comes into a dealership to buy a car for which she will be the registered owner. This applies to a woman shopping by herself, or with someone else, as long as the car is specifically for her.

2. Number of Female Referrals: Inquire at the beginning if the guest was specifically referred by someone else. This someone else could be a friend, a Facebook friend, a Women-Drivers Certified Trusted Dealer or a review by someone online.

3. Number of Female Sales: This is the number of sales to women each week and month.

4. Total Sales: Total ALL sales for your dealership by week and month.

5. % of Total Sales to Women: This is the percentage of sales to women compared to all sales for the week and month. This provides an at-a-glance view of how your store compares to the national numbers for sales to women.

DOWNLOAD THE TRACKING WORKSHEET TO MEASURE AND GROW YOUR FEMALE GUESTS, CONVERSIONS & BUYERS NOW

What You Put Your Attention On Grows
When you begin to track these numbers, several things will occur:

1. The attention of the sales team will be drawn to the figures being tracked. The numbers will be front and center. If your conversion numbers are low, you will implement strategies to raise them.

2. Focusing on the numbers elevates their importance. Understanding that the intent is to increase sales to women will increase your overall sales!

3. Tracking referrals helps you understand how well you are being perceived. It’s nice when a customer sees your advertising, but a customer who has been referred already has a positive outlook coming in.

Formal tracking of guest numbers and conversions is the first step toward capturing the valuable market segment of women buyers and becoming a destination dealership in your region.

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Are You Aware of the Untapped Market?
Bloomberg wrote an article last week about single women and SUVs. Over the past 5 years, small SUV sales to women increased 34%, compared to a 22% rise for men, according to MaritzCX. In this same time frame, premium small SUVs saw 177% growth in sales to women.

And among female car buyers, 40% aren’t married.

“There are single, professional females out there that need vehicles, and you need to be attentive to them,” said James Mulcrone, Director of Research Services at MaritzCX, who has studied trends among female car buyers. “They’re going to make money, they’re going to make their own decisions, and they can be very loyal consumers.” Click here to read BLOOMBERG Article.

Did you Know?

Two-thirds of women buyers reported their 2015 car purchase decision was “entirely up to me.”

So, What’s the Rub?

In a highly competitive market, what is your “Why Buy Here” message? Is it “the BEST Service or BEST Price?” That type of superlative language is simply overplayed and noisy. It doesn’t resonate with women and isn’t distinctive. Women do not want to be sold to like they are buying “power tools.” Her are 3 ways to stand out.

1. Sell more than Cars in Advertising. Women look at car ads, read dealer reviews and use social media to help make a car buying decision. Expand your ads to include more than price. Be sure to convey your reviews and reputation for excellent service and trustworthy business. Be the dealership that attracts women buyers because they can get a great car from a trusted, respectful dealer.

2. Sell the Dealership. Every shopper is a potential client of the dealership. Give them a tour of the service lounge, while you provide them with a free car wash. Explain that overnight cars are provided, since the dealership understands how precious time is for women. Your club lounge has great workspaces and wi-fi. Instead of all customers having to watch the same program, personal programming channels with earplugs are available for customized viewing. Notebooks on hand make checking email, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest a breeze. Every guest receives the list of women-centric seminars on tap for the month.

3. Be a Certified Trusted Dealer. 62% of women are not confident going to buy a car. Showcase your store as the place women in your area trust and go first.

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Download this white paper and get the insights and real-case scenarios about how your dealership can begin tapping into the magnificent sales to women. Now.

Do you know how many women ups visit your store each week? Each month?
Do you know how many of them actually convert and buy from you?
[We didn’t think so. Most dealerships don’t track this.]

Start putting your attention on these new mindsets to SELL YOUR DEALERSHIP at the zero moment of truth (ZMOT) and during the entire digital-to-showroom continuum. Your results will surprise and delight you; how does an additional $3 million to $6 million sound? Sound far-fetched?

DOWNLOAD WHITE PAPER NOW

You have women jumping in to check out your store at various points during this shopping continuum; be prepared to provide her with what's important to her. After all, two-thirds of women are not confident or comfortable stepping in to your showroom.

In this white paper, receive 8 Steps to Differentiate your Dealership to start converting more browsers to Buyers today.

Dealers who fast forward, starting now, will be the early adopters of a changing sales methodology and will reap the benefits.

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Today's Women's Wednesday is a rich historical look back reflecting on 50 years of women and automobiles. Its is a great way to view the huge industry and cultural shifts that have taken place in five decades. Fom A to Z. Here are just a few of the trends and events that changed the marketplace and perceptions:

Click Here to Read It Now

Read the Latest Her + His Car Review - Share With Your Social Communities

There are two sides to everything, right? To keep our car reviews innovative and interesting, we provide an animated, insightful, detailed and sometimes uncouth two points of view on the same car from – Her + His perspectives. Read the 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum review here.

For Previous Issues of Women's Wednesday, click here.

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In its first analysis of the top 10 selling car brands of 2015, Women-Drivers.com provides insights into women car buyers’ preferences and experiences. The report includes the top selling brands by units sold including Ford, Chevrolet, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Jeep, Hyundai, Kia, Subaru, and GMC (in descending order, with sales volume sourced and provided by GoodCarBadCar.net).

The report includes intel about what women have experienced while shopping, buying and servicing their vehicles at new car dealerships. This data is specifically generated from participating dealers who are certified through Women-Drivers.com. This information helps forward-thinking dealerships understand the nuances by brand for women buyers who are the largest buying segment and influence the most purchases. Unlike other reputation sites, the source of the information comes from reviews and opt-in surveys. 9 out of 10 women nationally opt-in to the 25 question survey.

One Size Does Not Fit All

Perhaps conventional wisdom says that most buyers are basically alike; that a “one-size fits all” approach is simple and works fine. The report indicates otherwise. While some results from the survey across brands appears similar, there are enough differences to warrant a closer look. The same definitely holds true for the dealership and dealer group reports.

Click here to Download the Report.

In today’s information-rich world, it is sometimes difficult to sort out what really matters. Reports like the “Women Car Buyers and the Top 10 Brands” distill key data points by brand into easily understood analysis that can help you drive more dollars to your dealership’s bottom line.

Read the full article here.

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Is Your Dealership Forward Thinking? Really?

How well do you adapt to new techniques for improving sales? Are you up-to-date on the latest buying trends of the ever-growing women buyers’ market segment? Are you confident your departments meet the needs of women, who now buy half of all cars and influence 80% of the purchases?

Adapting to change to Surge ahead of the Competition
Today’s information-driven world allows dealerships to collect and analyze customer intel to help fine-tune sales and service strategies to increase business. Change is challenging. However, unless customer and market intel is collected and analyzed, it is impossible to tell if your store is reaching it’s potential. To stand out, maximizing strategies for female buyers is a key way to improve revenue.

1. Dealer reviews have become so common that 80% of shoppers use them to choose what dealerships to visit.. But how are you marketing to women who rely on reviews twice as much as men? Further, they depend on reviews written by other women – seeing them as authentic and more relateable.

2. With numerous ways to shop, women are armed with an overwhelming amount of information before even stepping into the showroom. A strong digital-to-showroom approach is important and having a trusted online presence that speaks to your women+families is imperative. Use lifestyle content from the Women's Car Guide to cultivate and build a trusting relationship with your female clients that keeps you top of mind, by providing educational and engaging posts and newsletters.

Did You Know? Dealership websites are the top place women go first when researching to purchase a car.

3. Unlike other review sites, Women-Drivers.com provides unprecedented, thorough consumer intel from your own customer experiences when shopping, purchasing or servicing her car. Working to constantly improve the customer journey will result in continued stellar reviews, trust and marketshare build.

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Is Your Relationship with Women Customers like a Yo-Yo?

This week we are having a look at relationships with women customers. Traditionally, after women buy their car, they come into your store for mandatory service visits or for a recall. It's a bit like a Yo-Yo effect. What do more meaningful and ongoing interactions with women look like? A dealership might offer free car washes or birthday oil changes? What about a “happy anniversary this-is-the-day-you-bought-your-car-here-and-we-appreciate-you” tire rotation? These are opportunities to build relationships with women customers and for her to keep you top of mind.

Innovative Engagement and Enrichment
Innovative digital tools like Women's Car Guide provides touch points to cultivate and build a trusting relationship with your female clients that keeps you in a fluid relationship, while providing educational tips to women+families.

A woman may just buy a car every 5-8 years, but she uses it several times a day. Content in the Women’s Car Guide can be seen as a trusted resources all year round by emailing her articles that are relevant to her. Or, they can be used in newsletters to all your subscribers. The mobile responsive Women’s Car Guide integrates into your website to showcase lifestyle and life-stage articles.

It improves time spent on a dealer’s website. Content also auto-posts to the dealer's Facebook page. Reviews are also integrated to showcase transparency with this emerging market that relies on authentic feedback.
Click to see Women's Car Guide.

In the world of connectivity, click here to learn how to stay top of mind with your women shoppers.

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This week, hot-off-the press, we’ve got the 2016 U.S. Women’s Car Dealership Report, showing how progressive car dealerships make a difference in the experiences of women and families. This national report shows what is important to women when shopping, buying and servicing their vehicles.

The information in this report is drawn from over 4,000 women’s reviews and opt-in surveys. Using the reviews, Women-Drivers.com generates a Women Satisfaction Index® (WSI Score), ranging from a high of 5.0 to a low of 1.0. The surveys are used to delve deeper into women’s shopping, buying and servicing experiences.

This information is specifically generated from dealerships certified through Women-Drivers.com based on the customer reviews. These progressive, forward-thinking dealers use the company’s platform to improve sales and service experiences for their women clients. Dealers who participate, continually evaluate the data an consumer intel they receive to ensure they maintain high scores, knowing women rely on reviews almost twice as much as men.

Download the 2016 US Women's Car Dealership Report

“Unlike other 5-star review sites, we give women the opportunity to write quick reviews and then opt-in to a 25-question survey, which 9 in 10 women nationally participate in” said Anne Fleming, President of Women-Drivers.com. “Our platform empowers women to respond in an honest and productive way, thus, helping certified dealers evaluate and improve the customer experience. This data helps dealers take the guesswork out of marketing and selling to women."

Certified Women-Drivers.com Dealers receive an average satisfaction score of 92%, which is 23% higher than non-certified dealers. Women rely on reviews 50% more than men, so having positive ratings has a direct impact on a dealership’s building trust and the bottom line.

Women have a variety of options when shopping for a car and have an array of information available. It is always in a dealer’s best interest to understand how to engage women, and tune their strategies to maximize this buying segment’s interest.

Click here to read the full Press Release about the 2016 US Women’s Car Dealership Report.

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