Get More From Your Automotive BDC Efforts

automotive BDC

An automotive business development center (BDC) is an integral part of your dealership’s success. It is a team of professionals that are dedicated to helping customers and prospects with their automotive needs. If you want to get the most from your BDC efforts, there are a few things you should consider to ensure it runs smoothly. In this article, we will explore how to get the most out of your automotive BDC. We will look at the potential to leverage technology in an omnichannel environment to best address the sales and service needs of customers. Read on to learn how you can make sure your BDC is running at its full potential.

What is an Automotive BDC

An automotive BDC is a Business Development Center that is specific to the automotive industry. These centers are responsible for generating and managing customer leads and the service needs of dealership customers.

An automotive BDC typically consists of a team of sales and customer service professionals who are experts in the automotive industry. This team works together to generate leads, track customer information, and provide dealership employees with the resources they need to follow up with customers. By providing quality customer service and maintaining a strong relationship with customers, an automotive BDC is integral in delivering customer convenience and helping the dealership reach its sales and service goals.

Pros and Cons of Service vs. Sales in a BDC

When it comes to automotive Business Development Centers (BDCs), there are pros and cons to both a service-based and sales-based approach. We will explore both sides of the coin in order to help you make the best decision for your dealership.

Focus on Service Scheduling 

On the plus side, a service-based BDC can lend a more personal touch to your customers. This is because service representatives are focused on providing an excellent customer experience from beginning to end. They’re also more likely to develop relationships with customers and build trust over time.

However, this type of BDC can also be more expensive to operate than a sales-based one. That’s because you’ll need to staff it with highly-trained individuals who can handle complex customer inquiries and use sophisticated service scheduling tools. You’ll also need to have the right communications technology in place to support a service-based operation with text, email, and phone channels.

One of the most important functions of a BDC is scheduling service appointments. This ensures that customers are seen in a timely manner and that your staff is able to provide the best possible service. Here are some tips for making the most out of your BDC’s appointment scheduling:

  1. Use a scheduling tool: A scheduler can help you keep track of appointments and make sure that they are always promptly made. This will save you time and ensure that customers are seen in a timely manner.
  1. Schedule regular follow-ups: Follow-ups, especially for past declined services, are crucial in the automotive industry. They allow you to keep in touch with customers and ensure that they are happy with their purchase. By regularly following up with customers, you can build relationships and increase customer loyalty.
  1. Keep track of no-shows: No-shows happen, but it’s important to keep track of them so that you can take steps to prevent them in the future. By tracking no-shows, you can identify patterns and make changes to your appointment scheduling process accordingly.

Focus on Selling

A sales-based BDC, on the other hand, is typically less expensive to run. That’s because representatives are focused primarily on making sales appointments and generating leads. They may have less interaction with customers overall, but they can still provide excellent customer service when necessary.

The downside of a sales-based BDC is that it can sometimes come across as impersonal or pushy. Representatives may be more likely to make cold calls or use high-pressure tactics in order to generate leads. This could turn off some customers and damage your dealership’s reputation over time.

Your sales BDC should be focused on generating and nurturing high-quality leads that are likely to convert into sales. To do this, they should have a deep understanding of your dealership’s products, services, and pricing. They should also be experts in your customer base, knowing who is most likely to buy and why.

A sales  BDC should be proactive in its outreach, using a mix of channels to reach potential customers. This might include phone calls, emails, text messages, or even direct mail. They should also be available to answer questions and address concerns from current customers.

Staff the Right People

It is imperative that your automotive BDC be staffed with people who are the right fit for the job. There are a few key qualities that are essential for success in a BDC role. First and foremost, your team members must be excellent communicators. They should be able to clearly and concisely convey information verbally and in writing. Furthermore, they must be able to build rapport quickly and establish trust with customers. Additionally, they should have strong organizational skills and be able to multitask effectively. Finally, they should have a deep understanding of your dealership’s sales and service processes and be able to expertly navigate its various twists and turns. By ensuring that your BDC is staffed with individuals who possess all of these qualities, you’ll set yourself up for success.

Have a Process 

If you’re not able to track and follow up with your customers and leads, you’re missing out on a lot of potential business. It’s important to have a process in place so that you can make the most of your BDC.

There are a few key things to keep in mind:

  1. Timing is everything: When you reach out to a lead, it’s important to do so within a reasonable timeframe. If you wait too long, they may have already forgotten about you or gone with another provider.
  2. Be persistent: Don’t give up after one or two attempts. It may take several attempts before you finally get through to the lead.
  3. Be professional: Always maintain a professional attitude and approach when contacting leads. Remember, you’re representing your company and its brand.
  4. Have a plan: Don’t just wing it when following up with leads. Know what you want to say and how you want to say it before making contact. This will help ensure that your interactions are productive and successful.”

The Benefits of Universal Inbox Technology

A Universal Inbox for your Automotive BDC allows your customers a single place to communicate with you. It provides an integrated view of all customer communications, regardless of the channel used, and enables your team to quickly respond to customers. 

With a Universal Inbox, you can:

  1. Respond quickly to customers: With all customer communication in one place, you can ensure that inquiries are answered promptly.
  2. Increase customer satisfaction: By providing a single point of contact for your customers, you can make it easy for them to get the information they need and resolve any issues they may have.
  3. Improve efficiency: With all communication channels in one place, your team can quickly triage and route inquiries to the appropriate person or department.
  4. Get insights into customer behavior: By tracking how customers interact with your BDC, you can gain valuable insights into their needs and preferences.

Omnichannel Challenges for Universal Inboxes

BDCs handle all the call and overflow volume that generally hits the service and the sales department. In the past, this has been handled very easily because the main number first rings at the BDC, and in a “hunt group”, rings multiple phones at once, and silences the phones of other BDC agents once one of them answers the call.

The person answering the phone decides if the call can be handled locally otherwise they will transfer it to the requisite sales agent or service advisor. 

With the advent of text and email, this single channel (voice calls) became a little harder to deal with because now customers can send text messages, emails, or make voice calls. 

This omnichannel approach just does not translate well for BDCs that are typically geared only to take phone calls, and this is where myKaarma’s BDC inbox solution answers your omnichannel universal inbox needs for Automotive BDCs.

With the myKaarma BDC Inbox, you can handle all three channels of communications (text, emails, and voice calls) as one conversation type, which seamlessly and intelligently transfers to the BDC agents as one conversation.

BDC Inbox Example:

A customer texts 15 days after the repair order closes. The myKaarma BDC Inbox directs the text to the group at the BDC and would intelligently only allow the BDC to handle this within a group of agents who can handle phone calls, texts, and emails all in a manner in which nobody is “stepping on” any other agent.  The BDC Inbox is proven to work seamlessly, sometimes dropping call volume by as much as 50% from the original voice-only dealer setup. 

There are many more examples we can share. Contact us to learn how we can help improve the performance of your automotive BDC.