What are the challenges lying on the path of such companies and what do they have to do to successfully meet their business goals in remote sales channels? Based on numerous conversations with our current and prospective customers, we have prepared a list of 5 critical areas a leasing enterprise should carefully analyze before going online. Another five recommendation will be included in the second part of the article.
Evaluate the potential of an online channel in your business model
While making a strategic decision on the creation of new sales channels one should evaluate such an undertaking with special regard to its benefits and necessary expenditures. From a point of view of a leasing company, evaluation of sales opportunities for different assets in remote channels is especially important. Of course, moving the sales of small items to the Internet is much easier than it would be in the case of expensive devices and machines. Therefore, it is crucial to define the specialization of a given leasing company and to analyze the potential sales growth rooted in the newly implemented communication channels.
While designing our solutions (platforms: Lease-Commerce or LeaseTech Prospect Portal) we were trying to capture the needs of leasing companies specializing in vehicles (Automotive) and small items (IT equipment, devices of everyday use). Our observations and experiences indicate that especially in those two fields customers are ready and willing to complete sales processes in digital channels. Before implementing the solutions we mentioned above, one should carefully evaluate the characteristics of a given leasing company and a chance of achieving the related business goals.
Apart from typical aspects of business analysis, one should not forget about considering them with regard to current legal regulations a business must comply with. In case of financial services, legal environment can be quite complicated, so cooperation with qualified experts in the field is highly recommended.
Book some time and a budget for the project
Each investment should involve securing the assets necessary for its execution. In case of projects requiring implementation of a set of new IT tools, that includes, above all, human and financial resources. While making assumptions necessary for carrying out the project, one should also take into consideration the expenses of fueling the interest and convincing the customers to the new sales channels after they were launched. This category mostly includes marketing and advertisement.
Nowadays, it is hard to imagine a sales success with no significant support from marketing department, especially when we have digital sales channels in mind. Using the potential and power hidden in social media seems to be crucial in that case. This is a long-term investment – one should predict the need for constant, monthly costs of implementation of the project caused by employees’ salaries, tool maintenance and regular advertisement campaigns.
In order to meet our customers’ expectations, in business models included in our tools we use different financing options. We do it all to ensure that customers can optimize their investment expenses in relation to achieved benefits in the first stages of implementation.
Create positive impression in new sales channels
Regardless of the type of the service, customer satisfaction rate is the most important information and an indicator of the quality of service. In case of platforms providing a full online sales process, one could point to a number of factors that have an impact on this index. They include:
- Navigation and number of steps in the process. Customers are easily deterred by too long sales processes and they want to know the stage they are currently at.
- Proper visual factors and interface standards. It is something that relates to the customers’ associations with the company. The right UX makes the process transparent and user-friendly.
Design Split workshops conducted by skilled specialists is a common practice used for creation of high-quality UX/UI. Usually, this part of a process is completed using focus research or surveys. While designing our solutions, we pay a close attention to such services. Being aware of the importance of this task, we have created a specialized team made of excellent experts in the field. We can also conduct the audits of quality of UX/UI solutions for IT, especially the ones created for the target audiences of our customers.
Make a good use of customized online sales process
A correctly defined business model should predict all the possible customer paths leading them to a newly created sales channel. Among typical touchpoints for customers, we can include:
- A possibility to share offers with customers via company’s website. For customers looking for leasing products or willing to get to know more about them an opportunity to interact with a leasing company via website is an interesting solution. Of course, depending on the stage of development of an online process in terms of financing, it may end at a different stage. The process may end right after an application is submitted, followed by a direct contact with a salesperson (simplified online process) or signing a deal with a qualified signature after a remote identification and risk assessment (full online process).
- A possibility of sharing the offer with customers from online stores. A significant achievement of a company that decides to move into online sales channels is a chance to finance items in the online stores with leasing. It is easy to imagine that while buying, for example, a computer, a customer spots a button “Finance the purchase with leasing in XYZ company” and he starts the remote process of chosen goods.
- Sharing the leasing financing online on a specialized portals of leasing companies. Their goal is to sale the equipment owned by the leasing companies (such a case applies to I.e., after-lease properties). Such a situation is often related to offers to purchase for cars advertised on leasing companies’ own websites. A perfect solution in such a case is to provide customers with entirely remote process of vehicle acquisition using leasing product since the moment a car is chosen, until the deal is signed.
Taking into consideration sales scenarios mentioned above, it is crucial to capture all the opportunities of providing leasing products in online channels. It allows for quicker sales growth and return of investment.
Interestingly, while designing our solutions (Lease-Commerce and LeaseTech Prospect Portal) we have prepared them in such a way that it is possible to complete the entire sales process within them. The final look of this process, as well as its last stage, is defined by a decision of a customer.
Support customer throughout the sales process
Even the most carefully designed solutions should predict customers’ paths in case of any questions or doubts caused by different stages of the application for the leasing products. A natural solution in case of remote processes is providing the users with a human support in the most popular channels, such as audio, video and chat. While designing your solutions it is worth to predict such services – it is a proof of comprehensive approach to the entire customer relation. For years we’ve had a dedicated team taking care of development of such services in Ailleron’s organizational structures. Thanks to that, we can offer our customers a number of sales support services as a part of LeaseTech Virtual Branch Platform.
To sum up, the decision to start working on implementation of the remote sales channels should be preceded by a massive analysis and a precise plan of actions. We are willing to share our knowledge on the topics of completing the process efficiently. For more details, we invite you to contact us.