Independent Auto Auction Relations
AVC has infiltrated the independent auction space, and is building a track record for support, customer retention, and overall service. Auctions have expressed a sigh of relief in having a sale day crutch, as well as a knowledgeable entity to assist with vendor-related issues. Furthermore, auctions look to AVC for technology guidance, and strategy.
Global Knowledge of Technology
The layering of technology makes it necessary to understand how different applications work together. AVC creates a technology profile for each auction, but has the ability to cross reference profiles to identify system behaviors when paired with other technologies. The knowledge is updated to reflect upgrades/bug fixes as they are made available. In addition, issues identified within a specific technology profile can be used to proactively diffuse a potential concern at an auction having the same profile. In this way, independent auctions are not limited to their own experiences as AVC has full scope of the technology in the independent space.
In order to advance in the online space, you have to provide a menu of support options, and allow the customer to choose their preferred method. AVC provides each auction with a full, branded Help Center that includes a searchable knowledgebase, a community forum, and the ability to chat with a live representative. In addition, AVC also provides the auction with 2 telephone extensions. One extension allows AVC to receive calls on behalf of the auction, and the other allows AVC to transfer account-related calls back to the auction. In this way, customers feel that there are connected with the auction throughout the entire process.
In providing customers with technology support, AVC focuses on customer retention. Therefore, it is standard practice for support to include a remote session where the issue is resolved, and the customer is provided with an overview of system features. By educating customers on the technology, and providing a multi-channel support solution, AVC is building the confidence necessary to increase participation and sales.
AVC Online Management Database
Each Independent Auction is provided with a dedicated database to track customer support, technology issues, login credentials, documents, sale statistics, and AVC recommendations. Each Online Manager is given viewing access to the database, which allows them to review the AVC Summary Report.
Each Independent Auction is provided with a Business Details Page, and event listings that are promoted through paid online advertising, SEO, social media, and targeted email campaigns. AVC uses Google Adwords & Analytics to execute and monitor online promotional activity. Keywords are analyzed, and campaigns are updated accordingly. In addition, AVC provides incentives for dealers willing to participate in providing online feedback after attending an online sale.
AVC is a member of NIADA, and the NAAA. Company representatives attend various conferences throughout the year, promoting the online strength of its members, and reinforces its commitment to improving the online auction experience. Authoring a monthly blog, and a weekly newsletter has also helped AVC to become recognized as an online auction authority. In fact, Kelly Bianchi, AVC President, has been invited to sit on the Board of Technology for the IARA, and will attend the conference in Toronto this August.
AVC provides the only dedicated online auto auction directory, and review platform. By centralizing a communication center for all industry-related communication, AVC is building online credibility for the industry as a whole. Statistically, reviews –good or bad- serve to increase buyer confidence through humanizing the online experience. This platform provides the first level of personalization between Auto Auctions, and the online demographic.
To ensure a professional exchange of dialogue, AVC reviews all feedback before posting. In addition, AVC will notify auction members regarding negative feedback to provide the auction with an opportunity to earn back a customer. At times, AVC will act as a mediator between the auction and a dissatisfied customer. Here is an excerpt from an email written by an actual customer who conveyed dissatisfaction with his online experience…
“…If they’ll pull my account they will see the decrease in purchases. I’ve also complained by email about the lack of pictures on the condition reports. If you list over 1hour damage on a fender, hood etc there should be a picture of the damage. This keeps me from bidding on at least one car every week. I have received no response on this matter. I think that email went to the Fleet Manager. I really like buying here and can guarantee my purchases would double if these issues were addressed.”
Ultimately, customers want what they have always wanted… To feel like they matter. They do not want to be treated like second-class citizens. Above all, they do want to buy vehicles. AuctionVcommerce.com is lifting the online customer with the opportunity to voice their concerns, and actually be heard. By applying an activity-based notification system within AWG, the user could receive this email request the moment he logs out of the sale. This would provide AWG with another level of distinction over Edge Simulcast, Online Ringman, and Velocicast.
Consulting & Training
AVC provides consulting and training that is not covered through such organizations as The Auction Academy. The focus is on developing the online segment through the use of technology, workflow, and support. Therefore, AVC is developing the following courses: Online Management, Online Marketing, and Selling the Online Auction. In addition, AVC has launched the first ever Clerk Training Simulator, designed to increase the clerk’s capacity from acting as a data entry person, to actually becoming an Online Auctioneer, increasing participating and sales. The course is comprised of 4 levels, and scores based on Accuracy and Engagement. Once the clerk completes the final level, he/she becomes certified. The goal is to improve the consistency of the experience across the industry, while replicating the excitement of the physical auction. AVC has certified 3 clerks at this time, and have several more scheduled for training.