RTI and GAP products are becoming increasingly important to motor retailers. By adding value to the bottom-line, lifetime value, customer retention and customer satisfaction; equally they can be missed. Indeed, satisfaction can turn to dissatisfaction if things go wrong and unfortunately this continues to happen.
To maximise the benefits, now is the time to reassess your added value strategy; the products, process, promotion in the showroom and online, training and naturally compliance.
Call AutoProtect today on 01279 456600 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and discover how an integrated added-value strategy can help your business and enhance your bottom-line, lifetime value, customer retention and customer satisfaction.
Not all added-value products and their support are the same.
‘Health warning’ – Look again at your RTI product coverage
Over recent months, a number of dealers have discovered an unwelcome gap when it comes to the Return to Invoice (RTI) product they have been promoting. When customers have come to make a claim, a number have discovered that the invoice price has excluded Finance Deposit Allowances (FDA) and scrappage scheme allowances.
Far from a positive experience that reaffirmed the customer’s perception and value in their dealer, exactly the opposite outcome has been created. One dealer reported an unwelcome £2000 gap created by the deduction of an FDA in a recent payout that they opted to pay themselves.
All dealers should review their terms and conditions to check the coverage that is being provided to the customer. The AutoProtect approach is straightforward; if it says, ‘return to invoice’ then in Plain English the customer knows exactly what they are buying and what the business will honour.
The FCA is Good for Business
In March, the FCA published their latest update on dealer finance. It was further evidence that ‘doing the right thing’ is good for business. While the FCA’s news concentrated on finance rather than insurance, many will see their developing position as both appropriate and reassuring for car retailers and car buyers.
The FCA highlighted the fact that lenders are managing the prudential risk associated with residual values ‘adequately’. They also reported that arrears and default rates remain low overall.
Generally what we can see is an evolution. The dealer finance market is growing and it is doing so by working to create the type of good outcomes for the customer that the FCA wants to see. The FCA’s final report on motor finance is due by the end of September and it will continue to look at areas including the role of commissions, affordability, systems and controls and the transparency of information to consumers surrounding car finance. None of these should be seen as unwelcome because by getting these areas right, dealers can hope to assure themselves of a future for dealer finance.
Though this update relates to finance sales, the synergies with added-value sales are clear. The AutoProtect experience is undoubted; the dealers who have focused upon creating good outcomes have seen the greatest success with products which right now are more important to the bottom-line that arguably they have ever been.
A closer assessment of F&I in every area has encouraged forward-thinking dealers to seize the opportunity. Sales executives in such dealers are confident in the products and see them as a core part of treating the customers fairly. Products are promoted appropriately and positively. Compliance is not feared it is coveted because doing the right thing for the customer is doing the right thing for the dealer.
The Dealer View – Focusing on Fundamentals
A renewed focus on used cars and increasing the number of products per customer this year has seen Wessex Garages address both internal and external resources. Keith Brock, Managing Director, Wessex Garages has been quick to ensure that his added-value service providers matched his approach, noting;
“A core part of our fundamentals approach is an obsession with being Best in Class. This extends to our people, products and processes as well as in performance; it also embraces our partners. We have looked to ensure that both the cover and support services on offer match our ethos.”
The fundamentals approach adopted by Wessex Garages embraces products and processes. Brock sees better activity monitoring as being good for compliance and internal morale; while seeking out higher quality products supported by training has improved sales. By helping more customers make an informed buying decision, sales of premium products are growing.
Keith concludes; “We need added-value products to add even more value and with the fundamentals back in place, we can measurably see we are on the right road; it is one we need to stay on.”
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