Finding software can be overwhelming. Software Advice has helped hundreds of auto dealerships choose the right dealership CRM software so they can streamline and track car sales.

Showing 1-20 of 275 products

HubSpot CRM

With its cloud-based, customer relationship management platform, HubSpot helps companies of all sizes track and nurture leads and analyze business metrics. HubSpot is suitable for any B2B or B2C business in a variety of segments, including... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 359 recommendations

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FreeAgent CRM

FreeAgent CRM is a cloud-based sales, marketing and customer service platform that helps small businesses nurture quality customer relationships. The system works automatically by pairing with the user's email to create and classify... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 292 recommendations

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Thryv

Thryv is a cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) solution designed for small businesses across various industry verticals. Features include appointment scheduling, billing and invoicing, contact management, reputation... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 227 recommendations

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Infusionsoft by Keap

Infusionsoft by Keap is a cloud-based sales and marketing solution that offers customer relationship management (CRM), marketing automation and e-commerce functionalities in a suite. It helps small businesses across various industries... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 196 recommendations

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Salesforce.com

The Salesforce cloud is an on-demand customer relationship management (CRM) suite offering applications for small, midsize and enterprise organizations, with a focus on sales and support. The Salesforce app has capabilities that... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 189 recommendations

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NetSuite

NetSuite CRM+ is a cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) solution for small and midsize organizations. NetSuite caters to thousands of customers across a wide range of industries including wholesale distribution, manufacturing,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 146 recommendations

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Zendesk Sell (formerly Base)

Zendesk Sell (formerly Base) is the web and mobile-based customer relationship management (CRM) application that allows B2B and B2C sales professionals to manage sales, track leads and engage proactively with customers from anywhere.... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 135 recommendations

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amoCRM

AmoCRM is a cloud-based customer relationship management solution that helps users manage the sales pipeline. Users can receive feedback and reports about the performance of salespersons. The solution offers lead scoring and nurturing,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 102 recommendations

Platforms: MacWinLinux
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bpm'online CRM

Bpm'online is a process-driven customer relationship management (CRM) solution for marketing, sales and service automation. The solution allows companies to manage the customer lifecycle from lead to sales and to ongoing customer service. The... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 22 recommendations

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Infor CRM (formerly Saleslogix)

Formerly Saleslogix, Infor CRM offers a flexible customer relationship management (CRM) system for managing relationships, information and CRM. It provides comprehensive capabilities for managing sales, marketing and customer service... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 8 recommendations

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TeamSupport

TeamSupport is a B2B customer support software that helps teams collaborate together by eliminating miscommunications, improving customer communication and swiftly addressing client issues. TeamSupport has several key features that... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 7 recommendations

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Copper CRM (formerly ProsperWorks)

Copper is a cloud-based customer relationship management tool that gives users complete views of their customers. The program is applicable to any industry, including advertising, distribution and real estate. The Copper solution... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 5 recommendations

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Kloudville

Kloudville is a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that caters to wholesalers, distributors and e-commerce retailers and helps them to manage their business operations. Key features include inventory management,... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 5 recommendations

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Zendesk

Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features and... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 4 recommendations

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Salesforce.com Service Cloud

Service Cloud from SalesForce is a cloud-based customer service management solution that is designed to initiate customer service activities from anywhere. Built on the Salesforce1 Platform, Service Cloud works to centralize and optimize... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

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PhaseWare Tracker

PhaseWare Tracker is a customer support and help desk solution. It automatically notifies users whenever clients report or escalate existing issues. Flexible deployment options include on-premise installation and a cloud-based option. Applications... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

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REVE Chat

REVE Chat is a chat widget that can be added to businesses’ websites and is suitable for small to midsize companies in a variety of industries. Key features include live chat, voice calls, video chat, visitor queueing, proactive... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

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WebsiteAlive

WebsiteAlive is a cloud-based live chat solution that allows agents to communicate with their customers through chat. The solution caters to various industries such as government, hospitality, sports, entertainment and real estate. WebsiteAlive... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 3 recommendations

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Samanage

Samanage is suitable for companies seeking a help desk solution that offers IT service management (ITSM) functionalities. Samanage offers comprehensive service desk functionality that helps businesses respond to service requests in... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

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JivoChat

JivoChat is a business communication tool for e-commerce companies. It offers live chat, emails, calls and Facebook messaging in one omnichannel app. Users can implement live chat on their website, provide chat support to clients... Read more

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Recent recommendations: 2 recommendations

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Buyer's guide


Last Updated: March 14, 2019

If you're an auto dealership trying to get customers out of their dreams and into your cars, you'll probably find yourself in need of a customer relationship management (CRM) system that can help you put those buyers behind the wheel.

CRM software provides a variety of tools that businesses of all stripes use to become more efficient in the ways that they monitor their sales, their calls and emails to clients and other important aspects of their interaction with past, present and potential future customers.

Auto dealership CRM software adapts all of those tools for use by auto dealerships, in addition to providing some extra functionality (such as inventory control and lease management) specific to auto dealerships.

This buyer's guide will explain what auto dealership CRM software can do to increase sales at your auto dealership. We'll also examine specific features, of both general CRMs and dealer-specific CRMs, that you should take into consideration when you're looking for an automotive CRM system.

Here's what we'll cover:

What Is Auto Dealership CRM Software?
Auto Dealer Software vs. Auto Dealership CRM
Common Features of Auto Dealership CRM Software
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Market Trends to Understand

What Is Auto Dealership CRM Software?

Auto dealership CRM software provides people in the auto dealer industry with a CRM platform specialized to their needs. It helps dealerships speed up and streamline their sales processes, respond promptly to customers' needs and maintain a detailed central database of customers and prospects.

The most important aspect of any CRM system is its contact database, which contains centrally-accessible information on various customers, contacts and prospects. This means that if one salesperson interacts with a customer, then the CRM contains a record of it so that all salespeople at the company are aware of that interaction.

For auto dealerships, another crucial part of CRM is sales force automation. This integrates the contact database with tracking metrics related to the sales pipeline for the purchase of a car from the dealership. It allows managers to more efficiently monitor their sales team for performance review, tracking commissions, team building etc.

Automotive CRM systems will often also contain features specific to the auto dealership industry, and so it is important to differentiate between this type of CRM software and more general auto dealer software.

Auto Dealer Software vs. Auto Dealership CRM

As explained above, auto dealership CRM software is a subset of the larger realm of CRM software. It consists of both general CRM systems that can be used with full effectiveness by auto dealerships and more specialized CRM systems that are intentionally dealership-centric (see the two features tables in the following section for how the features offered by these two types of auto dealership CRM systems may vary).

Auto dealer software, on the other hand, refers to any type of software that is marketed to and used by auto dealerships. It includes auto dealership CRM software, but also includes accounting software, inventory management software and other systems that are not part of generalized CRM software. We define “Auto Dealership CRM Software" as software that is primarily a CRM system—whether it's a generalized system or one specific to dealerships—but which may include some of these other features.

Common Features of Auto Dealership CRM Software

The features list of most auto dealership CRM software products can be divided into two types—features that will be found in most general CRM products, and features that are specific to CRM products dedicated to auto dealerships.

General CRM Features

Contact database Most products provide a searchable database to store client information (e.g., contact information) and relevant documents (e.g., contracts and repair histories).
Sales force automation This aspect of the system helps dealerships manage their sales team's activities, and helps the team close more deals by keeping thorough, accurate records of their interactions with all customers and sales prospects. This can play an important role in the determination and distribution of commissions.
Interaction tracking These systems document conversations held by phone, in person, through live chat, email or other channels. These include interactions with sales prospects, current customers and returning customers with service needs. Interactions can be logged manually, or automated with phone and email system integrations. Depending on the product, some systems can also track interactions on Facebook, Twitter and other social platforms.
Workflow automation This is the standardization of business processes, usually through a combination of task lists, calendars, alerts and templates. For example, once a task is checked off as complete, the system might automatically set a task for the next step in the process. This can be vital to a sales process that involves multiple departments in the dealership.
Reporting Auto dealership CRM tools can be used to track a sales team's performance and productivity based on activities logged in the CRM system—for instance, how many cars are sold monthly, or what makes/models are selling best. These tools can also be used for forecasting and for tracking commissions.

 

Dealership-Specific Features

Showroom management Many auto dealership CRMs will have tools to allow managers more streamlined control over the showroom floor by tracking the activities—and productivity—of their sales team (and other staff). They can also allow employees to provide customers with quick quotes via calculation tools.
Inventory management This function will allow dealerships to keep track of their stock and inventory, making it much easier to monitor and manage large vehicle lots (especially if there is more than one lot at multiple locations) and to track specific makes/models.
Lease management Car leases feature a different set of parameters, and thus a different set of paperwork, than straight-up sales, so some auto dealership CRMs will provide special functions to monitor lease agreements, including payments and repairs.
Service department management For dealerships with a service/repairs department, this set of features will track service orders, create and track invoices, and help manage both labor flow and the inventory of parts.

The sales manager dashboard in Q-GPS

The sales manager dashboard in Q-GPS

What Type of Buyer Are You?

The kind of auto dealership CRM system that you're looking for will largely depend on the size and type of your business, since this will determine the amount of features that you require. Most dealerships will fall into one of the following four categories:

  • Single dealership, no service center. These are individually owned or managed dealerships that don't have a service center attached. They can probably get away with a relatively basic system that will provide a contact database, some sales force automation and interaction tracking.
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  • Multiple dealerships, no service centers. These are groups of dealerships in a franchise that also don't have service centers attached. They will want a slightly more robust CRM that can provide added features such as workflow automation and reporting.
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  • Single dealership with service center. These are individually owned or managed dealerships that have an attached service center. They will find a CRM useful if it contains all of the basic features needed for a single dealership, plus features for inventory management and service department management.
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  • Multiple dealerships with service centers. These are large-scale dealership franchises with multiple locations and multiple service centers. These dealerships will want the most robust CRM available, with a wide variety of features and the ability to integrate with other dealership-focused software such as accounting and HR.
  •   

Market Trends to Understand

Cloud-based software. Cloud-based software solutions have become the go-to for most small-to-midsize companies, since they possess multiple advantages as compared to on-premise systems. On-premise software requires space for physical hardware along with the IT knowledge and resources to implement the software. Cloud-based software, on the other hand, is much more easily and quickly implemented, with fewer up-front costs and less of a need for IT assets. Thus, cloud-based systems are particularly suited for smaller businesses that lack those IT resources, like most auto dealerships.

Mobile functionality. Though most of the deal-making and sales transactions at a dealership will take place sitting at a desk inside the main building, employees looking for vehicles in the lot (or transferring vehicles from one lot to another) will find mobile accessibility to be a great benefit. Mobile access can also be useful to salespeople who want to provide quick, basic quotes to potential customers on the sales floor.