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6 Ways to Use Gamification at Your Auto Dealership

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Automobile sales are serious business. Tight inventory and slow new vehicle sales due to rising prices are just a few of the challenges the industry is facing that make it more difficult than ever to ensure your sales and service reps are hitting goals.

Published on:
August 17, 2021
Illustrations by:
Written by:
Jennifer Lilley

Automobile sales are serious business. Tight inventory and slow new vehicle sales due to rising prices are just a few of the challenges the industry is facing that make it more difficult than ever to ensure your sales and service reps are hitting goals. So how do you as a dealership leader overcome market challenges and ensure your team meets corporate demands? The answer is gamification.

Gamification takes everyday automotive dealership tasks and events and turns them into contests. With a digital platform, employees can track their progress, see how others are doing, and work toward individual and common goals—all within the interface of a game they can access on a smartphone or tablet. The best solutions even let users choose their rewards straight from the app.

Salespeople at auto dealerships often love competition, and gamification is a great way to engage them even more in their jobs. Here are six ways to use gamification at your dealership:

1. Sales games

Sales contests have been part of automotive dealership strategy for decades, which is why gamification might not seem like anything new. However, gamifying sales isn’t just tracking who is selling the most cars, but also taking a fresh approach to contests and adding enthusiasm to a role for which it’s easy for employees to get discouraged.

Overall sales aren’t the only category that can be gamified. Contests can set up for a variety of sales, service, and fixed operations department goals including:

  • New leases
  • Lease renewals
  • Last year’s model clearance
  • Used cars
  • Accessories and upgrades
  • Extended warranties
  • Repair orders
  • New car sales

Also, automotive gamification doesn’t always need to pit salespeople against each other. Team goals are great for building camaraderie, encouraging and supporting colleagues, and celebrating a common victory. Individual games allow salespeople to strive for and achieve personal goals and receive rewards for doing so.

2. Test drives

Two-thirds of automotive customers consider a test drive “very important” to their buyer’s journey. As such an effective sales tool, test drives are perfect for gamification activities. Contests can track the number of test drives, the number of people taking test drives (if more than one person gets behind the wheel during one drive), miles driven, how many sales resulted from test drives or anything else you can think of.

3. Skills improvement

Automotive sales require a careful balance of confidence, experience, and knowledge. Few salespeople become experts overnight, and even grizzled veterans can benefit from skills sharpening.

That said, not many salespeople like training, especially the seasoned pros. Gamification can help by providing incentives to participate in training activities and improve their skills. In this way, training doesn’t feel so much mandatory—even if it is—as it is an opportunity to earn points and rewards.

4. Calls and emails

Good salespeople know that the relationships nurtured with prospects outside of the dealership are just as important as the ones made with customers in the showroom or on the lot. Making those calls and sending those emails can be frustrating because they might be ignored, but the conversations are nonetheless important.

Gamification offers a terrific way to incentivize salespeople to write emails, follow up with prospects, make cold calls, and post to social media. Rewards don’t necessarily need to be big for these games, which achieve two goals. First, and perhaps most obviously, they can lead to more sales and a nice ROI. Second, salespeople—especially newer salespeople—become more comfortable interacting with potential customers. That benefit lasts long after the gamified event ends.

5. Holiday promotions

Holiday sales events are important promotions for automotive dealerships and perfect to tie into gamification. The games might be small with the event usually lasting a few days, but interest in the game spikes with everyone keyed in on the promotion. Games can also be holiday-themed and offer rewards based on the holiday being promoted (e.g., a dealership-wide barbecue for meeting a Memorial Day team goal).

6. Service department games

Automotive dealership employees are more than just salespeople, and gamification can also appeal to and inspire them. The service department is ripe for its own kinds of sales games because technicians might be customer-facing but often don’t consider what they can do to increase sales of what they offer

Gamified sales incentives might include:

  • Repair orders (e.g., oil changes, car washes)
  • Maintenance packages scheduled
  • Return customers
  • Referrals
  • Upsells
  • Favorable reviews

Like salespeople, gamified tasks help service department employees feel more comfortable interacting with customers in the long term. Technicians think ahead on services that might be needed and instinctively might recommend, for example, that a vehicle owner choose your dealership for a 60,000-mile maintenance instead of an outside mechanic.

Automotive gamification is simpler when it’s powered by a cutting-edge platform. The Arcade solution delivers a fun user experience for employees, is easy for managers to implement and use, facilitates communication, and provides insightful data. Schedule a demo to see how we can help your dealership.

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