Digital Signage and the New Car Dealer

January 5, 2016 Pero Krpan
Digital Signage


Customer experience, engagement, and sales can all benefit from the right digital signage (DS) strategy in new car dealerships. Digital media has and continues to make expanding inroads into a wide variety of retail spaces, offering businesses an opportunity to promote the brand, educate customers about products and increase overall customer engagement.

Digital signage in new car dealerships should target two audiences: potential buyers entering the showroom and car owners coming to the service center for repairs and maintenance.

Digital Signage Ignites the Buying Urge

The right digital signage deployment will create an atmosphere of trust, transparency and value in the eye of the viewer.

It is no secret to us as consumers that the retail environment can affect our buying urges either negatively or positively, depending on the experience. The creation of an overall rich buying experience for customers is absolutely essential today and digital media in showrooms helps accomplish this experience that ultimately sells more cars. The creation of ambiance that is modern, positive, professional and inspires confidence in the mind of the buyer is what digital media is designed to do. Billions of dollars are spent developing rich retail environments designed to influence the customer experience and make the buying decision happen in that moment of impulse. Countless research papers and studies ponder how we make buying decisions: pricing, product features, marketing influence to name just a few.

One thing is certain, the actual retail environment, meaning the building, old or new, the interior décor all combine to create a positive or negative physical and emotional impression in the buyers mind. A buyer going from a dealer that has a static showroom, meaning no digital media to one with digital media, will be more inclined to make a purchase decision helped by that digital ambiance.

New car dealerships and the buying process is a data-heavy environment, there is a lot of helpful information that can be deployed at the point of sale (the dealership). The most effective way to provide it to buyers is through the strategic use of digital signage. There simply is no argument against this kind of advertising technology as a sales tool, and at the very least it does “no harm.”

Digital Signage Creates Opportunity

Digital media provides substantially more than just a modern and pleasant atmosphere. A well thought out and designed digital signage installation can provide a variety of useful and actionable information to the dealer’s customers.

Customers who are waiting for their cars in the service waiting area provide the dealer with an opportunity to present current specials that are available to those service clients. If a service customer is enjoying the digital ambiance of the dealership he could very well be open to thinking about a new car. With this technology, a dealer has a greater chance to move a service customer into a new car, without it, much less.

With the service customer now aware of an offer available to him, he initiates the sales process. Digital signage has now created an unsolicited sales opportunity with less sales resistance. Much higher odds of incremental sales are created by the use of it.

Customer Data and Digital Signage

Financial data from a variety of suppliers can identify if service customers have positive equity in their cars. This gives a dealer the opportunity to establish an upgrade center with his digital solution.

Service customers, especially, can be made aware of their positive equity situation via digital signage and appropriate offers presented to them with their approval. Not every vendor to new car dealers has a positive equity product.

Since this is a growth area and presents a solid opportunity to gain incremental sales from existing service customers, make sure your digital signage vendor can supply it.

Digital Signage Scientifically Proven to…

Digital signage has been scientifically proven to attract a viewer’s eye and, as a result, your messaging is read by your audience. More specifically, we mean a DS solution that provides a banner or crawler at the bottom of the screen is the scientifically proven technology that moves the eye to it. We have all watched ESPN and it is absolutely impossible to keep your eye off the banner and to read and comprehend the information that is delivered with the banner.

Some digital signage solutions provide licensed content and dealer advertising is inserted in place of the original broadcast advertising. This is not effective since we are conditioned to turn our attention away when conventional advertising appears on our TVs.

Make sure that any the solution that you are considering uses a banner or crawler that is consistently presenting the dealer’s messaging on accessories, service specials, and inventory that your customers will actually read and possibly act on.

Digital Signage and OEM Content

Digital signage requires content and is the most important component of a deployment from any vendor. The new car dealer’s brand content needs to be an extension of the brand advertising that is seen by potential customers on TV. This content most likely had an impact and impression on those people coming into your dealership to buy a car.

If the messaging on your DS network is drastically different from what the brand’s advertising campaigns across their media channels look like, you could cause confusion and maybe doubt in the buyer’s mind. A solid digital advertising display vendor to the new car dealer vertical will understand this and constantly adjust OEM content to match broad media campaigns by the brand.

Just remember, great digital signage solutions are not just about screens and technology, content is the new king.