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AI Coming to Auto Dealerships
September 7, 2017 at 8:00 AM
by Patrick Leonard
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If you’re in the auto industry, you undoubtedly have heard about autonomous vehicles; this is just one type of artificial intelligence (AI) that is disrupting the industry for auto dealerships. Nearly every car manufacturer is working on autonomous driving vehicles, including some newcomers to the industry, and AI shows up in other aspects of today’s “smart cars”. All that technology is making its way to auto dealerships too.

6 Ways Auto Dealerships are Using AI:

Chat Bots – Instead of having a team of humans communicating with potential buyers, chat bots can monitor multiple social media feeds, your website, and lead generation websites and talk with buyers, answering many of their questions and the buyer feels they’re getting exceptional service, not knowing their talking to a bot. We’ve seen chat bots praised on local review websites, like Yelp, for their exceptional service.

Content Writing Bots – A bot can take a vehicle’s specifications and create a full narrative about the vehicle for your website and social media channels. This task is something that would bore a human to write after the first few posts and isn’t as cost-efficient or timely as using AI.

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Retargeting Potential Buyers – If you could stay in front of a potential buyer after he/she leaves your dealership, you’d probably want to do that. With remarketing technology, you can get back in front of a potential buyer after that person leaves your dealership’s website or your showroom.

Sales Process – Shopping for a new vehicle is partly fun and partly a huge pain. While test driving and learning more about new technologies and features on this year’s vehicles is fun, sitting for hours to get the paperwork done is a chore most everyone would prefer to skip. AI can create efficient, customizable sales processes, including allowing customers to start the paperwork on their own devices to expedite the process and make customers happy.

Predictive Analytics – In short, this type of AI uses data from the past and analyzes it to predict what will happen in the future. These analytics can help you staff your service department, look for buying triggers, and determine what color vehicles to put on your lot. Even though your gut may say to order more white cars in May, sales data may suggest otherwise and save you thousands of dollars.

Cybersecurity – Hackers are more sophisticated these days and using AI to penetrate your network and to trick your employees into giving them access. Today’s cybersecurity systems utilize AI themselves to identify threats early and to find that small piece of data in a huge log file that a human could never find because it would be like “finding a needle in a haystack”.

Artificial Intelligence is just one of the many ways technology is revolutionizing the way auto dealerships do business. AI can provide customers a better sales experience through personalization while driving efficiency for auto dealerships, both which increase a GM’s profitability.

Why is AI becoming mainstream now? It comes down to awareness/acceptance, accuracy (the technology is quite exceptional now), and affordability. A good IT firm can help you sift through the potential AI options and ensure your infrastructure can handle this new type of technology.

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