Touchscreen information kiosks create consistent brand environments
There is value in creating a brand experience that encompasses all of an OEM's dealers, online and in person.
Omni-channel shopping is becoming the norm. Buyers begin their research at home and bring what they learn into retail locations, looking for confirmation of the deals they discovered online. This process is different from the classic model of in-person retail browsing, but makers and dealers of big-ticket purchases such as cars and home appliances can still use the system to their advantage.
Auto dealers have to be aware of some new factors that can throw shoppers off and distract them from the customer's journey. For instance, if there is a disparity between the way products are presented on OEM websites, dealer pages and in person, consumers could be hesitant to buy.
"Ideally, branding will carry through to resources on the floor."
The continuous transaction
In a best-case scenario, the customer's journey will be consistent. Using the auto industry as an example, it's best for OEMs and dealers alike to be on the same page when it comes to branding and promotion. People can identify items that seem interesting on third-party sites, follow up through official channels and make the purchase in person. However, tonal whiplash - information presented in radically different ways - can cause problems. This can occur if an individual encounters a local dealership website that does not look like the OEM resources. He or she may feel ill at ease and the car they felt close to purchasing may no longer seem so certain. This can impact their trust in the dealership.
Ideally, the assets of the OEM and the dealership website will be congruent and the consistent branding will carry all the way through to the resources on the showfloor, such as the information kiosks and tablets carried by staff members. When OEMs work with their networks of dealers, providing software and assets, they can create cohesive marketing tools.
In these cases, no matter where consumers look, the official digital resources will carry the same branding and information direct from the manufacturer. Facts consumers learn early in the research process will be consistent, and there will be no contradictions to make them reconsider their purchase decision.
OEMs in the auto world have strong brands that they want represented consistently.
What types of resources might customers look up as they get close to purchasing a new vehicle? They may want in-depth detail about the features of that car or truck, or the ability to inspect different customization options. OEMs can outfit their dealers with this information and more, ensuring their in-store and online resources are in line with the manufacturer's strong branding strategy. Consumers who encounter this high-quality content could find that it answers many of their questions about the cars and trucks they are considering before they even speak with a salesperson.
There is also room for kiosks to contain information customized by the dealer. Each dealership's systems can contain specifically designed pages that describe the benefits of shopping with that particular location, whether it's a staff record of accomplishment for customer service or service packages that will give buyers peace of mind. The combination of OEM-approved assets and individual details about the dealer will combine to give customers everything they need to know. With an easy-to-use interface, a touchscreen kiosk provides all the reinforcement a customer needs to complete his or her journey from research to satisfying purchase.