Dori Dado says he has gotten more than he bargained for from his relationship with MAXDigital.
Dado, general sales manager for BMW of Freehold, N.J., says he first encountered MAX when talking to a colleague from another BMW dealership. MAX’s co-op partnership with BMW was a key initial selling point.
“I learned that MAX was the only company that was working with BMW corporately and had direct access to the BMW feed,” Dado says.
BMW of Freehold now uses MAX’s Digital Showroom to connect each of the cars on its lot with detailed, accurate descriptions on its website.
“Before we signed up with MAX, a customer would go to our website looking for a [BMW] 3 series and find that we have 100 in stock,” Dado says. “All had different prices, all had different options—but to the customer, the descriptions on our website were identical; all we could list was the standard options.”
Accurate, specific online vehicle descriptions are key for BMW of Freehold, since Dado’s goal with his marketing is to direct as much traffic as possible to the dealership website.
“Our website is a high-traffic site,” he says. “A lot of dealers pay for leads, but we are trying to develop our website as our main lead provider. We think organic leads are the best.”
Although getting the Digital Showroom connection to detailed vehicle descriptions was the first motivator for signing with MAX, “everything else has been a bonus,” Dado says.
The biggest bonus may be helping the sales staff hold the line on prices in used-car transactions. Dado’s staff participated in a “Stop the Drop” workshop with MAX in August. In the two months after that, the average drop from the initial selling price of the dealership’s used cars to the final sales price was cut by 63%.
One of his secondary marketing goals has been to increase the amount of time visitors spend on the dealership website, and he says MAX also has helped him do that by as much as 30 seconds a visit.
Another bonus is what the MAXDigital Showroom offers for the dealership’s sales staff.
“The preowned car business has changed 180 degrees from six or seven years ago,” Dado says. “It used to be that people would come in on a Saturday, kicking tires and walking from car to car. Today when customers come in, they have a stock number, they know the VIN and how many miles the car has on it. They come in for a specific car, or maybe two, and they’ve studied everything about the car.”
It’s a problem when those knowledgeable customers are paired with a client adviser who doesn’t know the cars as well as they do, Dado says. But with the information available on a laptop or tablet through Digital Showroom, he says, “my client advisers’ knowledge about our used-car inventory has been helped significantly. If a client adviser can’t talk about a car without running in to pull a file, the customer gets the perception we don’t know what we’re doing. Now, client advisers can pull up a vehicle’s information immediately and have an educated discussion with the customer.”
“It makes everyone feel better.”
And the final bonus, which may be the best part of working with MAX, Dado says, is the staff.
“We’re in the ‘right now’ business,” he says. “I don’t have time to be transferred around from person to person. MAX’s support system is tremendous—even the CEO is responsive. And I know I’m not their only dealer.”
“It’s worth everything when you need help and can make one call and get your problem resolved.”