Maruti Suzuki Digital Platform was initiated 2 years ago and now covers 1000 dealerships in the country
In the new age of social distancing, buyers prefer the online sales strategy of click and order rather than venturing into brick and mortar stores. This is not only seen in terms of car purchase but in all avenues of buying.
While this style of making car purchases showed more promise during the past months of lockdown called in view of the pandemic situation in the country, the trend still continues even as we gradually ride out of the COVID-19 crisis.
Maruti Suzuki India Limited, the largest automaker in India introduced the digital platform two years ago in 2018. Since its introduction, the company has witnessed three times increase in inquiries. This platform now covers over 1000 online dealerships.
Since the launch of online platform, the company has sold more than 2 lakh cars via this platform. What is even more astonishing is that there have been close to 21 lakh online inquiries since April 2019. Which means, every minute almost 3 customers are enquiring about a new Maruti car via their online platform.
A recent search conducted by Google indicated that there were over 72 percent auto buyers who searched for their dealers online. During the past 5 months, this digital inquiry process which had earlier contributed to around 20 percent of total sales, increased to 33 percent.
As per Google Auto Gear Shift India 2020 Report, nearly 95 percent of new car sales in India are digitally influenced. It was found that this online purchasing process helps the customer get better information about their preferred dealers thus ensuring a better and more transparent process and converting digital inquires into actual sales is a more seamless process.
’Near-Me’ Customer Searches
Maruti Suzuki has seen a two fold increase in ‘Near Me’ customer searches to the extent that the company has integrated over 1000 dealership across 3000 online touchpoints. The digital platform offers customers a virtual showroom experience where they can view car of their choice, locate their nearest dealership, and get quotes, financial consultations and EMI calculations at the touch of a button. It was found that customers who inquired via the company’s digital channel ended up making purchases within 10 days thus reaffirming that converting digital enquiries to sales is easier.
It is with this outstanding demand that the company has set up a state-of-the-art technology platform in partnership with Google and Facebook. Maruti Suzuki has also initiated training to its dealer partners with digital management teams who are continuously being updated via physical and virtual training sessions on management of the online platforms and keep up with expectations of the customer.