Statistics reveal, your phone and your ability to help callers remain a key way to improve Dealership performance.
- Only 1 in 3 potential car buyers know the exact vehicle they want to purchase. Marketers can influence these undecided buyers by targeting them with the right digital ads at the right time (Source: Cox).
- 61% of new and used vehicle shoppers contact the dealership by calling after a search. Due to the complex nature of automotive purchases, consumers typically prefer to speak to a live agent to get their questions answered once they’ve completed their online research (source: LSA).
- 60% of consumers searching for vehicles on mobile would call the dealership from a call extension. Call extensions offer a frictionless link from the online to the call channel, and they’re proven to increase both ad performance and click-through rate (source: Google).
- 57% of consumers call about vehicles from a search ad call extension to schedule an appointment. Similar percentages of consumers call about inventory, pricing, and/or business hours (source: Google).
- Calls will influence $1 trillion in US consumer spending this year. In our mobile-first world, calls are often the most convenient way for customers to convert (source: BIA/Kelsey).
- Phone calls convert to revenue 10-15x more than web leads. Calls are the most valuable conversions automotive marketers can drive. By tracking the calls driven by your automotive ads, you can measure your full ROI and optimize accordingly (Source: BIA/Kelsey).
- Callers convert 30% faster than web leads. Calls provide a more immediate return on your automotive marketing investment (source: Forrester).
- Caller retention rate is 28% higher than the web lead retention rate. Driving calls from automotive marketing campaigns is also more profitable in the long-term — callers are more loyal than web leads (source: Forrester).
How to Create an Effective Call Quality Monitoring Checklist and create a consistent lasting impression.
The majority of vehicle shoppers start their journey by finding and comparing dealerships online, usually through searches. When they’ve completed their research, they often convert by calling. To acquire more customers in 2020, automotive marketers must focus on driving more high-quality calls and personalize the caller experience to increase call conversions.
The first question to ask yourself is, does your team have room to improve in the area of call quality? Regardless of how well-trained or the quality assurance steps that you take, there is always room for further improvement.
Creating a call quality monitoring checklist is an essential first step to create lasting and positive impressions with each caller. A call quality monitoring checklist establishes expectations for your front-line employees as well as their supervisors. By analyzing calls, you can measure performance in each key area that impacts the customer’s experience.
The Quintessential Call Quality Monitoring Checklist
Monitoring multiple dealerships, across the USA, there are several uniform guidelines to help ensure you’re delivering best practices and should be included in your checklist.
1. Live Answer Calls Promptly
Your customers’ experience begins as soon as they dial your phone number. How many rings does it take before they reach a live person? Do they need to go through an excessive number of automated steps before they can talk to someone about their inquiry or issue?
While answering calls promptly is linked to how your automated system is structured, wait times can dependent on call volume if your office is staffed properly and how efficiently your team works. By using features like a simultaneous ring to mobile devices or call queues that the initial wait time can be drastically reduced.
2. Identify and Clarify the Caller’s Needs
The customer’s reason for calling should be identified immediately. This ideally should be done before the caller must provide identifying information, such as his or her name and account number. By identifying the customer’s needs first, the employee can determine up front if the call should be transferred.
This essential step plays into the total customer experience because it affects the total call time and potentially their need to repeat the same information to multiple people. Because it may reduce total call time, it enables your team to work more efficiently.
3. Provide One or Several Solutions
Whomever you assign to be the first point of contact for your dealership, they should be trained to identify specific scenarios and to understand all available options the customer has. For example, you should create a list of typical customer scenarios and identify what department or manager should receive such calls. There are some instances where you may want the original sales or service associate to handle follow-up calls, and other times you want issues escalated to a team lead or supervisor. When callers work with your front lines team, your associates should be empowered to offer suitable solutions without placing the customer on hold whenever possible.
While many calls are handled in a routine way, others are unique and may require your employees to think on their feet. Ongoing staff development is one way to improve in this area.
4. Avoid Long Hold Times
Employees will place customers on hold for various reasons. For example, they may not know how to handle a situation and ask their supervisor for assistance. They may need to track down a part number, service advisor or supervisor and explaining the situation to this colleague can take several minutes, and these minutes can seem frustratingly excessive to customers waiting on the other end of the line.
In addition to creating frustration for your customers, long hold times create longer initial wait times for incoming callers too. The entire operation can get bogged down if each item on the call quality monitoring checklist item is not crossed off consistently.
5. Provide Conclusion for the Issue
Depending on the nature of the call, your team must create a conclusion for issues. One example is by providing the customer with a transaction number for payment. In some cases, disclosures must be read before the call can be ended.
These final steps typically are compliance-based as well as service-oriented. Your team may be trained to handle numerous situations, and each situation may require a different conclusive step. Sales teams, for example, usually have a “buy” signal at the end of their call quality monitoring checklist – if that phrase is said, managers know that there is a higher likelihood that a sale was made on that particular phone call.
6. Inquire About Additional Needs
Reading a disclosure or completing other conclusive steps finalizes the issue at hand, but the customer may have additional needs. By inquiring about additional needs before concluding the call, your team ensures that your customer has been fully served and is satisfied with the outcome of the call.
Using the Call Monitoring Checklist to Cover All of the Bases
Whether you adopt this call quality monitoring checklist, or you adapt it to your specific needs, ensuring uniform compliance with every call is seemingly impossible with your current operational structures. Since it’s impossible for managers to monitor every call and fill out a checklist objectively. Technology has evolved to provide automatic call monitoring checklist solutions and call disposition tracking.
While there are expensive Artificial intelligence systems that can be used to observe every call. Live call monitoring and call recording can help you quickly audit individuals.
Utilizing missed call or voicemail call back reports can highlight each rep’s responsiveness and alert managers immediately of service shortcomings. This provides your company with an extra layer of oversight and protection that can potentially save valuable time and resources down the road. Separately, call quality monitoring checklists can aggregate data over any period of time to capture ongoing trends and monitor rep progression in specific areas of their calls.
You cannot oversee every call that comes in, but you can provide your team with the support and live training opportunities they need to be successful in their positions. By using call recording you’ll be able to highlight them doing things right and share these best-in-class service examples with new associates.
Analyze conversations to measure what percentage of calls aren’t being answered at each location, if long on-hold times result in high call abandon rates, if the caller was a good lead if they converted, and which agents or dealerships are best (and worst) at converting callers to consumers. You can then make the appropriate adjustments to your marketing and coach your agents if necessary.
Once you know what you want to measure, you can work with your phone company or DMS system provider to discover what tools can help automate the process.