Younger consumer place more emphasis on customer experience than most other traditional categories, according to experts. So if automotive aftermarket businesses want to be relevant, they need to focus on this area.
Considerations like price, availability, promotion, ratings, shelf placement, and so on are still important. But Brian Everett, industry cloud lead in SAP’s industrial manufacturing area, called it a “stack concept” during the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association’s recent 2022 Technology Conference.
Nowadays, there are three fundamental principles that make up a good experience: Convenience, trust and relevance.
People are busier now coming out of COVID than they ever have been, Everett explained. More has been added to people’s lives — more things require maintenance such as electronics and cars. Whoever can service someone the easiest is going to get their business.
That’s translating over into business-to-business transactions.
“If you can make the purchasing cycle easier, or you can basically schedule your shipments around how I need it or you can schedule discounts and billing cycles around when I need to do it — the more convenient you can make the engagement at a business to business [level] with me, the more I’m going to prefer my point of decision to go with you,” Everett said. “And that decision could happen three months before I actually placed that purchase because my past experience lends me to want to work with you at all angles until, for some reason, I’m disappointed or you break trust.”
On the topic of trust, people have become more conscious of how sustainable, purposeful and ethical companies are.
“What’s your quality look like?” Everett said. “All kinds of other things that invoke the concept of trust is a core buyer behaviour.”
Finally, relevance plays out at an emotional level instead of a transactional level but incorporates all the same factors as the others.
“In the world of commerce, and fulfillment in a business-to-business contract, it’s not how many times you get it right, it’s how few times you get it wrong,” Everett said.