Toyota’s Secret to Successful Online Lead Generation is Conversational Commerce
Toyota is a Japanese multinational automotive manufacturer and as of 2016, the world's largest automotive manufacturer, behind American General Motors and Ford. As of 2009, Toyota officially lists approximately 70 different models sold under its namesake brand, including sedans, coupes, vans, trucks, hybrids, and crossovers. These models include Toyota Yaris, Toyota Corolla, Toyota C-HR, Toyota RAV4 and many more.
Automotive brands today are dealing with the changing expectations of millennials and other on-trend customers who are looking for a new style of buying a car and better online customer experience.
Toyota was looking to increase their online sales leads and improve how they connect with their customers while they shop or research online on multiple devices. The latter is especially important as Autotrader’s Car Buyer of the Future Study revealed that 42% of car buyers today use multiple devices to shop for a car and this number will increase to 80% by 2020. Online research, online deal-building and the desire to begin the financing process online have become the new standards in automotive and Toyota was eager to grab this opportunity and start their after-market pitches earlier in the customer journey and online. The brand also wanted to improve transparency and show to their customers that it is open and forthright in explanations, pricing, quality standards and can be trusted.
Autotrader’s Car Buyer of the Future Study revealed that 42% of car buyers today use multiple devices to shop for a car and this number will increase to 80% by 2020.
The three most important objectives that Toyota was aiming to achieve with Whisbi’s solution were:
● More Convenience for the Customers: being able to reach any customer, regardless of where they are – on the streets, at home or in the office, or which device they use.
● Better Overall Online Customer Experience: enhance online customer experience through live online video communication and personalized assistance in real-time.
● Grow Sales and Online Conversion Rate: increase chances to monetize their web visitors better while reducing abandonment rates and boosting cross-selling and upselling.
Considering the fact that more than 90% of vehicle buyers start their car buying online, Toyota had to get savvy at creating a compelling online customer experience and start building confidence with its online audience. Toyota decided to implement Whisbi’s revolutionary conversational commerce solution. This interactive omnichannel solution is automatically activated in less than 5 seconds after the customer clicks on the call-to-action floating button, which appears on the Toyota website (illustrated below).
If the customer prefers to speak to a sales representative at a different time, they can also request a call-back by booking an appointment for any day and time.
More than 90% of vehicle buyers start their car-buying jurney online.
With Whisbi’s conversational commerce solution, the brand was able to reach any customer, regardless of their location or device they use. Access is universal from any desktop browser, tablet or a smartphone and is accessible on 3G and 4G networks. Toyota has also enhanced online customer experience with live online video chat. This helped the company discover what their audience wants and using that information to shape their online shopping process and influence their buying decision. As there is no registration needed to ask questions, customers could connect and interacts with the brand seamlessly!
Toyota was able to track the entire customer journey from click- through to interaction and closed session with a new pre-qualified lead generated for their dealership network. This helped the brand to get a better understanding of their online customers´ behavior and collect key insights through the Whisbi Deck, such as: where the online customers are coming from (e.g. which online sources, web pages and campaigns are driving more traffic and leads; which devices are used prior to reaching out to the brand etc.).
Toyota presented their new Toyota C-HR Launch Edition car from the Madrid FIRA exhibition, with the help of Whisbi’s conversational commerce solution. They were connecting to One-to-One sessions with their online customers directly from the exhibition. This was followed by Toyota C-HR showroom set-up and an online launch and sale of the car. It was the first time that a car was available exclusively online – not in any dealership. Online customers could register their interest online and put a deposit down to secure the car, then go to the closest dealer and pay the rest once the car became available.
In January alone, Toyota generated 413 test drives for their new car Toyota C-HR, with the help of Whisbi’s conversational commerce solution!
Whisbi helped Toyota to address any potential concerns regarding the brand or the new Toyota C-HR car model early in the customer journey and helped secure appointments in real time, avoiding the risk of losing valuable leads in the communication pipeline. The benefits of this new innovative way of selling cars were mainly the differentiation from its competitors through online customer experience and a better monetization of the web visits.
We have received great news from Toyota: Whisbi leads are of exceptional quality! After analysing the results for 2017, the brand found out that 59% of the customers that had a One-to-One session with a Toyota agent, booked a test drive at one of their dealerships! What is more, despite only having two agents and one coordinator working in the online showroom, they have managed to book on average 200 test drives per month for Toyota dealership network in Spain!
Furthermore, their Customer Satisfaction rate is an astonishing 95% and it is based on customer feedback after the end of each One-to-One session.
Due to the successful results they were able to achieve with the Whisbi solution, Toyota today has a total of 4 models in their online showroom: Auris, Toyota C-HR, Yaris and Rav4.
Although selling cars online is still in its infancy, Whisbi has already cracked the code on how to better monetize web visits and improve the online customer experience for car manufacturers globally.