Car Sales Tips: The Impact of Micro-Moments on the Consumer Journey

By: Brooke Kovanda

Micro-moments are influencing buyer behaviors and expectations. But what exactly are “micro-moments” and in what ways are they shaping the consumer journey? Let me take you through some of the most important car sales tips.


Getting started, it’s important to understand how very “new” the idea of micro-moments are in the digital marketing world – even though they’ve existed for quite a while now. Think with Google leads the charge on research into the ways in which smartphone technology is revolutionizing the digital marketing space.


Here’s how “Think with Google” describes themselves: “Think of us as your resource for everything from high-level insights to deck-ready stats to useful tools. Here you will find the data we’re exploring and the trends we’re tracking along with forward-looking perspectives and behind-the-scenes looks at digital campaigns —across industries, platforms and audiences.”


Do a Google search for the phrase “micro-moments” and you’ll find this definition: Micro-moments are “when people reflexively turn to a device – increasingly a smartphone – to act on a need to learn something, watch something, or buy something. They are intent-rich moments when decisions are made and preferences are shaped.”


Micro-moments present dealerships with the chance to distinguish themselves from their competition through personalized experiences that present relevant information.


Here are four things every business needs to know in order to understand how to use micro-moments to their advantage!


Four Things You Need to Know About Micro-Moments


1. Micro-Moments Require That Consumers Find Information Quickly And Accurately

Consumers have all the information they could ever want right at their fingertips – well, at least they should. When they turn to their devices to learn, watch, or buy, they don’t want to take the time to dig around to find what they are looking for, or worse, have to question the validity of the source.


Here’s an example scenario to help provide more clarity: Let’s say you’re a DJ/Party Planner who regularly hauls around a lot of professional stereos and heavy lighting equipment.


You want to get more equipment to add to your inventory, but it seems your current vehicle can’t really carry much more — weight wise or space wise. That being said, you’ve determined that the best course of action would be to upgrade to a new vehicle. The primary question is: which one?


Well, your next step would obviously be to visit a dealership website and explore the body types available. More importantly, however, you’ll be filtering through your results to look for a vehicle that has the capacity to handle all of your equipment.


If this type of information is on a dealership’s website, then that dealership has officially won that micro-moment. If it isn’t, you’re obviously going to go to the next dealership down the road.


“If this type of information is on a dealership’s website, then that dealership has officially won that micro-moment.”


Consumers want accurate information immediately. Your website’s content is going to be the deciding factor of whether or not consumers will maintain prolonged engagement. That’s why it’s always important to make sure the information you’re giving is accurate


2. Micro-Moments Mean That Businesses Need To Be Present For Consumers

The consumer journey is being reshaped by new behaviors and expectations. This culminates in the need for new micro-optimized touch points and for digital marketing to connect with people on their terms.


Past facts and figures are out the window when it comes to micro-moments. Consumer behavior in these moments is unpredictable and solely driven by their needs at that given point in time.


For a business to capitalize on these unique needs, website experiences must be engaging, intuitive, and easily found.


Things like Static Forms and live chat must have the ability for consumers to ask specific questions and receive timely answers — and even then, static forms rarely provide the ability for consumers to have a 2-way conversation with brands.


In a nutshell, brands need to be able to fully engage with consumers in order to provide consumers with everything they need to make an informed purchasing decision.


3. Micro-Moments Allow For Businesses And Brands To Tell Their Story

Micro-moments don’t always mean that the consumer wants to buy something. More often than not, consumers are simply looking for information. Sometimes it’s regarding a purchase and sometimes it isn’t.


When this is the case, businesses and brands must recognize this as an opportunity to provide information while simultaneously showcasing who they are and what their business stands for.


By infusing their personality into the consumer’s experience with them, regardless of whether or not the consumer is looking to buy anything, businesses and brands can make themselves stand out in the consumer’s mind.


Making a good impression could ultimately lead the consumer back to their dealership’s site when the time comes to make a purchase.


I talk a little bit more about this idea of transparency and openness and how it affects goodwill in my previous blog post: “Consumers will have more goodwill towards dealers because more information and pieces of the buying process will be easily found and understood from the very start.”


4. Micro-Moments Are Actionable

They have the potential to skip past different stages in the buying journey like “researching options” and “evaluating vendors.” If you give consumers a really good experience (during the moment they’re researching) , they may be swayed to immediately make a purchase because you’re pushing them to make important decisions.


Micro-moments happen billions of times per day, and businesses and brands need to stay relevant in order to capitalize on them. Because they are action driven, micro-moments provide businesses the opportunity to use different experiences to indicate where consumers are in their journey and allow the possibility for experiences that custom path and tailor specifically to each individual consumer’s needs.


See how micro-moments are shaping the traditional “consumer’s journey?” They demand that businesses (dealerships included) fully assess their digital footprint at all stages of the buying process so that they can respond to the consumer’s needs in real-time.


“If you give consumers a really good experience , they may be swayed to immediately make a purchase.”


Micro-moments are necessitating that businesses be agile and proactive about the types of content and experiences that they put on their website, and that these content and experiences are able to forge meaningful connections between businesses and consumers.