While the digital platforms certainly work for today’s modern customer, there are still many who are not so digitally savvy or would rather prefer to physically see and drive a car before buying it. Here’s how Maruti Suzuki plans to cater to them.
The coronavirus pandemic and the resultant nationwide lockdown has prompted automakers in India to adopt digital platforms to sell vehicles. And Maruti Suzuki India is no exception. While the company has been accepting online bookings even before the lockdown came into effect, it’s now that the carmaker is witnessing its true potential. In fact, now a customer can complete the entire car buying process without visiting the showroom. During the lockdown itself, the company received over 5000 bookings online. While the digital platforms certainly work for today’s modern customer, there are still many who are not so digitally savvy, or they would rather prefer to physically see and drive a car before buying it. What about them?
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Answering this very query put forth by one of our viewers in the latest episode of Freewheeling with SVP, Shashank Srivastava, Executive Director – Marketing & Sales, Maruti Suzuki India said, “We did consider this because this is the feedback which has come already from the consumers when we interacted with them. So, our solution is that we do this activity on the telephone, of course, they are most welcome to come to the showrooms, which as I said, have very strong safety measures in place. But for people who don’t want to come to the showroom, and at the same time can’t be so savvy as far as digitalisation goes, yes, all they require is a telephone call actually. So, we can go through the whole process, they only have to be in touch with the sales guy” However, Maruti says 90 per cent of its customer are currently using the digital platform.
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This means, customers will simply have to call the showroom and a sales representative will guide them through the entire process, without any need to visit the showroom. As for those who wish to have a more hands-on approach, Maruti Suzuki has already issued a comprehensive standard operating procedure (SOP) to its dealer partners who have started operations, which includes a range measures that ensure safety and hygiene. Under the new guidelines, all dealerships will maintain social distancing in the best way possible.
All customer touchpoints within the showroom and the vehicles that are on display will be regularly sanitised. In fact, customers will need to take prior appointments before coming to the showroom, which will allow the sales representatives to manage them one at a time. Both staff and visitors will be required to undergo thermal scanning before entering the sales or service outlets, and test drives will be provided only if customers ask for it, wherein the vehicles will be sanitised after every test drive. The seats of the test vehicles will also be covered with disposable covers which will be replaced after every test drive.