Over the last decade, the world has shifted dramatically from a manual mindset where paper workflows and physical tasks were the norm to a digital-first mindset where processes are effortlessly done at the click of a button. Nearly every industry has felt the digital shift and dealerships are no exception.
Today, dealers need to adopt a digital-first mindset to keep up with their shoppers and ultimately survive.
What Does The Term “Digital-First” Even Mean?
According to Wilson Fletcher—The Human Layer, “digital-first” is a term that involves “approaching a new opportunity or problem with the assumption that the solution should be as digital as possible.” Essentially, having a digital mindset both encourages and challenges businesses to adapt to change, integrate the latest technologies, and develop teams that are technologically savvy.
So digital-first does not mean changing the fundamental principles of running a dealership, rather changing the way you execute those principles.
So how do you develop a digital-first mindset? Here are three rules to follow.
1) There Are No Sacred Cows
Every aspect of running your dealership needs to be open for discussion. This idea that if it’s not broken don’t fix it needs to stop. Too often innovation is hindered by an individual that is not willing to talk through a problem or listen to a viable solution. If you’re focused on becoming a digital-first dealer this is the one rule to always remember.
2) There Are No Stupid Questions
Technology is hard. Don’t let your lack of experience limit your curiosity. There’s some amazing new tech available to dealerships from cloud management platforms to CRMs and integrated texting solutions. The trick to maximizing the investment in technology for your dealership is to ask all the questions you can think of. The more you ask, the more you’ll know, and the better off you’ll be when setting up a new solution for your team.
3) There Will Be Some Mistakes
Regardless if you’re switching new technologies, processes, or people mistakes are going to happen. The key is to not panic but rather to understand what caused the mistake and find a solution going forward. Don’t let a little mistake derail an entire project or stop you from launching the next one. Acknowledging there will be mistakes will let you be prepared and allow you to recover quicker.
Ask What Would A Digital-First Dealer Do?
As you and your team continue to explore new ways to improve your dealership from technologies to strategies remember to be open to suggestions, ask as many questions as possible, and don’t sweat the small stuff. Keep these concepts in mind and it will help you innovate and continue to become a digital-first dealership.