In a bid to give car dealerships something of a touchy-feeling make over, Volkswagen are updating showrooms across the country. The move is a clear attempt to entice more car buyers over the threshold of Germany’s most popular automotive manufacturer while getting them to return post-sales servicing and parts. The wonderfully named Spencer Clayton-Jones, Volkswagen’s Head of Customer Quality and Network Development, commented:
“Where the changes are complete we’ve noticed a large uplift in customer visits, purchases and staff morale. Customers are clearly enthusiastic about coming to the new showrooms and this suggests when they do they’re happy, engaged and serious about buying a car. If they like the environment it follows they’ll want to come back for regular maintenance, which has definite benefits for them, and of course, for our Retailers.”
VW currently have 210 retailers nationwide; almost 50 have already completed a facelift with 70 schedule for a beautification by the end of the year. As well as updating their showrooms, Volkswagen has re-located some of their dealership to new, purpose-built sites. The new showrooms will each have space for at least 10 VW, waiting areas, refreshments, merchandise etc. plus free WiFi.
Aftersales will benefit from gleaming new workshops. Some dealerships will have cafés, children’s play areas, hand-over and consultation areas. Not only will retailers benefit from all the very human touches listed above, they’ll also be part of what Volkswagen are call ‘Digital Showroom’ features. Much of Volkswagen estate and staff will contain iPads designed to link on and offline buying experiences. The idea is to make the pre-purchase habits of modern car buyers and the in-store experience as seamless as possible. Customers can also view virtual examples of products that may be unavailable in showrooms.
“We’re looking forward to 2015 when all of our showrooms will have undergone the changes and we can guarantee all our customers across the UK the consistency and high quality environment they would expect from Volkswagen.”