Best Practices

The Hidden Value of “Duplicate Leads”

If your duplicate leads are driving you crazy, consider a paradigm shift: these leads are actually a valuable source of customers for your dealership.

Why? Because by submitting information multiple times, duplicate leads have demonstrated repeated interest in your dealership.

What’s more, each time a single customer converts, they actually get a step closer to buying. Someone may initially convert on a dealership-wide holiday sale, and then a week later submit information on a trade-in tool.

Or maybe they’ll convert on an offer for one vehicle, and then, after shopping around, submit information for a sale on another. In these cases, we can see customers moving down the funnel, and should not miss opportunities to reach out to them. The numbers bear this out: duplicate leads have been found to convert at a rate almost 170% higher than non-duplicates.

So, when it comes to duplicate leads, the first step is to recognize their value.

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The second step is to track and analyze duplicate lead data, which takes a little CRM work. Some CRMs mark duplicates as bad leads. If yours does, train your staff to ignore this little tag of doom and instead pay attention to the lead details: pages viewed prior to conversion, number of site visits, time on site, and, of course, which form prompted conversions. Manually merge leads if you need to, making sure all information is preserved.

If your CRM tags duplicates as such, the process is similar: check all conversion information, as well as any other data your CRM provides.  These new pieces of information can help you have a more productive buying conversation.

Now we arrive at the most important step: follow up. Dealerships are often better at follow-up than other industries, but there is still vast room for improvement. Leads should be contacted quickly and persistently, BDC and sales reps armed with all lead data and prepared to offer value to the customer, specifically focused on information from their latest submission.

What if you’ve already initiated follow up? Follow up again! Think of a customer browsing a brick and mortar store. They may change their minds several times over the course of their visit or visits, and salespeople can adapt to that with no problem.

When it comes to leads, the dealership team can be just as responsive to customers’ evolving needs and interests.

Duplicate leads: Taking it to the next level

Duplicate lead management and follow-up is a great start. But since duplicates are so valuable, the time has come to go further. Rather than simply reacting to duplicate leads, dealerships can proactively encourage duplicates. That is, they can foster opportunities for customers to return to dealership websites multiple times and convert throughout their buying process, as they move down the funnel.

Does that sound crazy? It’s certainly not a typical approach. But as noted earlier, classifying duplicates as bad could not be more wrong. It’s only logical to to prioritize customers who are most likely to convert– and to create pathways for more customers to continue moving forward with your dealership as they get closer to buying.

Here are some strategies for cultivating duplicate leads:

Remarketing

One way to encourage duplicate leads is to invest in a strong remarketing campaign. Work to bring people back to your website, even if they’ve converted before. Give them the opportunity to continue to consider you.

This also means that your website needs content rich and dynamic enough to reach customers at every stage of buying and owning or leasing. It should be equipped to answer questions and help with every step of research.

Nowadays, this kind of content engagement is best practice, with customers doing so much of the buying process online. The idea is for shoppers to return to your site every time they need something, so try to actively bring them back and engage them, even after you already have their information.

Encouraging multiple conversions

Another way to encourage repeat conversions, or duplicate leads, is to set your website offers to reach even those customers who already converted on another offer. Here’s the logic: if a shopper converted on an offer, they are very likely to have moved to a different stage of shopping when they return to your site, and should have the opportunity to act on new interests.

With smart targeting, your website can continue to respond to your customers’ behavior so that someone who converted on a storewide sale two weeks ago and is browsing a particular VDP now can see a offer for a discount on that particular model. For that shopper, the offers speak to different stages of their buying process.

Encouraging duplicate leads helps cultivate continuous engagement for customers, and create more opportunities for your dealership to interact with them throughout the buying journey. It’s tempting to imagine steps such as conversions, phone calls, and purchases as endpoints, but actually each of these moments is part of a long process– and there’s always a next step.

Someone who submits a lead continues to do research. Someone who makes a purchase now has maintenance and repair needs– even someone who bought from a competitor. Someone who comes in for maintenance and repair eventually is going to look at a new vehicle, or one for their child. A proactive, strong duplicate lead strategy can help build and maintain connections with customers to become their dealership of choice every step of the way.