How do independents stack up online?

An article on dealer-focused website Motor Trader caught my eye this weekend.

The article laid out the results of an online investigation in which the Motor Trader team approached 40 dealers through social networking site, Twitter, looking to buy a car. Those dealers all had active Twitter accounts.

So how many of those 40 do  you think responded with offers of test drives and bookings? Just 12.

Of those, only half responded within an hour and just three engaged the pretend customer in conversation.

Now fair enough, this research is based around buying a car rather than running it, but the lesson learnt can be applied to almost any trade. If you take the trouble to get yourself online, then make use of it. We know there are thousands of members of the independent automotive aftermarket, from suppliers to factors and garages to retailers using the social networking platform to get their message across, and for some it works wonders.

Increasingly consumers are turning to the digital realm to find the right workshop to take their car, so being online and being active is more important than ever.

Do you regularly get customer referrals online? What’s your top tip for the aftermarket when it comes to social networking? Let us know in the comments below.

This post was written by:

- who has written 295 posts on CAT Magazine.

CAT magazine's in-house reporter and self-confessed petrol head

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