In today's rapidly evolving automotive landscape, the work truck industry has emerged as a crucial segment with immense potential for stability and growth.
Despite its significance to local, national, and global economies, the commercial vehicle opportunity has often been relegated to the periphery of the automotive dealership.
However, with the erratic economy brought on by the vagaries of supply chain disruptions and the looming labor strikes, embracing the power of data can be the difference between success and struggle for fleets.
Here are five ways data is reshaping the work truck industry, revolutionizing traditional processes, and setting the stage for a more efficient and streamlined future.
No 1. — Enhanced Search and Inventory Management
Buying and selling commercial vehicles has historically been complex due to the diverse array of vehicle types and specialized upfits.
Data gleaned from dealer invoices has emerged as a game-changer, offering specific categorization, and streamlined search functionalities for existing inventory, including vehicle types and unique upfits.
Unlike outdated online platforms that mirrored print catalogs and failed to capture the nuances of work truck configurations, modern data-driven systems empower dealers and customers with a more intuitive and tailored approach to vehicle selection.
No 2. — Simplified Ordering Process
In today’s environment, an in-stock work truck is less likely to be found, especially to the exact specifications needed for the business use case.
But for those businesses that know exactly what they want and need, digitizing data has simplified the ordering process.
When selecting a specific upfit or truck type, "fitment" data (which upfits can be installed on which chassis or vans) can automatically remove options that no longer apply to that custom order.
With the low level of in-stock work trucks and even more rarity of finding one that precisely matches a customer’s specific requirements, custom orders are becoming necessary.
Utilizing data can considerably streamline the process of ordering custom work trucks.
By integrating fitment data, digital platforms can automatically eliminate options irrelevant to a custom order.
This evolution eliminates the need for time-consuming callbacks and prevents unwelcome surprises upon delivery, offering a seamless ordering experience for buyers and sellers.
No 3. — Comprehensive Cataloging of Options
With so many custom options available today for commercial buyers, deciding what is right for their business is tough.
For those uncertain about what is out there that could meet their needs, digital catalogs are an indispensable resource.
These catalogs, with extensive displays of various build-outs and capabilities, enable buyers to navigate their options more clearly and confidently.
Adding to that online access, such as vocational use cases, will also help make the best commercial vehicle purchase decision.
No 4. — Streamlined Financing Options
Just as digital data transformed consumer car shopping, it has likewise revolutionized financing solutions for commercial buyers.
Offering an online approval process or a simplified in-dealership option significantly reduces the frustration of securing financing.
This data-powered transformation aligns with the customer expectation of a convenient and swift transaction experience.
No 5. — Frictionless Transport
Transporting commercial trucks and vans, often odd-shaped and sized, presents unique challenges that demand specialized attention.
When coupled with supply chain complexities that necessitate cross-state buying and selling, in-depth configuration data becomes pivotal for accurate quoting and to ensure safe, high-quality transport.
By harnessing precise configuration data and a stable network, dealerships can effectively alleviate transport-related friction.
Data for Customers
The work truck industry is undergoing a dynamic shift, with data at the helm of this transformation for dealers and business customers.
As automakers expand their expectations of dealerships to include selling telematics, warranties, maintenance packages, and more, data-driven software technologies are set to free dealerships from the chains of outdated, cumbersome processes that frustrate customers and cloud the relationships, while significantly improving the lives and ROI of their customers.
New technologies are set to simplify the entire journey, fostering a transparent and collaborative relationship with customers.
The potential for growth and the inherent stability of this sector is undeniable, and dealerships that embrace data-driven processes are poised to reap substantial benefits.
Embracing data is not merely an option — it's the pathway to success in this evolving landscape.