Last Modified: February 9, 2024

Written By: Margaret Henney

|Published Date: July 21, 2023|7 min read

The Best CRM for Auto Dealerships

Smiling car seller standing in car salon with customer and showing around cars on sale.
A CRM is an essential tool of modern dealerships today - helping to drive sales growth, improve customer satisfaction, and enhance customer retention. Investing in or switching CRMs is an important - and often expensive - decision. In this article we break down what a CRM is and its primary purpose, what to look for when evaluating a platform for purchase, and list some of the top CRMs for dealerships. 

What is a CRM?

CRM stands for "Customer Relationship Management." It refers to a system or strategy that dealerships use to track and manage their interactions and relationships with customers. A CRM system is designed to store and organize customer information, interactions, and facilitate various processes related to sales, marketing, and customer service.By centralizing customer data, dealerships can gain a holistic view of their customers, enabling them to deliver personalized experiences, track key interactions, target marketing campaigns effectively, and provide better customer support.A CRM system typically includes features such as: 
  • Contact management
  • Lead and opportunity management
  • Sales forecasting
  • Marketing automation
  • Customer service and support
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Integration with other business systems
When used properly, a CRM allows dealerships to track customer interactions across various channels, such as email, phone calls, social media, and website visits, providing a comprehensive view of customer engagement.

What should dealers look for in a CRM?

When evaluating a CRM for a dealership, there are several key features and considerations to keep in mind. Here are some features to look for:1. Lead Management - A robust lead management feature is essential. It should allow for easy capture, organization, and tracking of leads, as well as provide tools for lead scoring, assignment, and follow-up automation.2. Customer Database - The CRM should offer a centralized customer database where all customer information is stored, including contact details, purchase history, service records, and preferences. It should enable easy search and retrieval of customer data.3. Sales Process Automation - Look for a CRM that automates various sales-related tasks, such as follow-up reminders, appointment scheduling, and task assignment. Automation streamlines the sales process and ensures timely actions.4. Inventory Management - Integration with an inventory management system is crucial. This feature allows sales teams to access real-time information on available inventory, pricing, and specifications directly from the CRM.5. Communication and Follow-up Tools - The CRM should provide communication tools such as email templates, SMS capabilities, and call tracking. Look for features that enable efficient communication with leads and customers, as well as automated follow-up reminders.6. Integrations - Integration with marketing and sales tools or built-in marketing capabilities is valuable. Look for features that support targeted marketing campaigns, personalized communication, and customer segmentation. 7. Reporting and Analytics - The CRM should offer robust reporting and analytics capabilities. It should provide insights into sales performance, customer trends, lead conversion rates, and other key metrics. Customizable reports and dashboards are beneficial for monitoring dealership performance.8. Mobile Access - Mobile access is crucial for sales teams on the go. A CRM with a mobile app or responsive web interface allows access to customer information, leads, and tasks from anywhere, facilitating remote work and improving productivity.9. Integration with Other Systems - Consider the CRM's compatibility and ability to integrate with other dealership systems such as DMS (Dealer Management System), marketing automation tools, and inventory management software. Integration helps streamline operations and data flow across different platforms.10. User-Friendly Interface - A user-friendly and intuitive interface is important for easy adoption and daily use. The CRM should have a clean layout, easy navigation, and customizable options to suit the dealership's specific needs.11. Training and Support - Evaluate the CRM provider's training and support offerings. Look for comprehensive onboarding, training materials, and responsive customer support to ensure a smooth implementation and ongoing assistance when needed.Remember to assess the CRM's scalability, pricing structure, security measures, and reputation in the automotive industry. It's also helpful to seek recommendations from other dealerships or industry peers to gain insights into their experiences with different CRM solutions.

The Best CRMs for Auto Dealerships

There are several CRM software options available for automotive dealerships. Covideo Dealer Services provides integrations with nearly all of these top options. Here are some of the top CRM systems commonly used in the automotive industry:

1. DealerSocket

DealerSocket offers a comprehensive CRM solution designed specifically for automotive dealers. It includes features such as lead management, customer database, inventory management, sales process automation, and marketing tools. (Plus, you can use Covideo directly in the DealerSocket CRM!)

2. VinSolutions

VinSolutions provides a CRM platform tailored for automotive dealerships. It offers features like lead and opportunity management, customer database, sales process automation, and integrated marketing solutions. It also offers integrations with other automotive software tools.

3. CDK Global

CDK Global offers a range of automotive dealership solutions, including a CRM system. Their CRM provides tools for lead management, customer database, sales process automation, and marketing campaigns. It integrates with other CDK Global software products for a comprehensive dealership management solution.

4. Reynolds & Reynolds

Reynolds & Reynolds offer a CRM system designed specifically for automotive dealerships. Their CRM solution includes lead management, customer database, sales process automation, and marketing capabilities. It also integrates with their other dealership management software.

5. Elead

Elead is a popular CRM software used in the automotive industry. It offers features like lead management, customer database, sales process automation, marketing tools, and service management. It focuses on providing end-to-end solutions for automotive dealerships.

6. AutoRaptor

AutoRaptor is a CRM system tailored for independent used car dealerships. It includes lead management, customer database, sales process automation, and communication tools. It also offers features specific to managing the inventory and sales of used vehicles.These are just a few examples of the top CRM systems used in the automotive industry. It's important to evaluate each CRM's features, pricing, ease of use, and compatibility with other dealership systems to determine the best fit for a specific automotive dealership's needs.Looking for a video tool that integrates with dealer's favorite CRMs? Check out Covideo Dealer Services' list of comprehensive integrations.

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