Targeting Digital Purchasing Through the Dealer Network

At A Glance

Carlisle conducted extensive research on automotive e-commerce transactions to guide the electric automaker through the development of a customer-focused, comprehensive business process for selling vehicles online. Upon completion of the engagement, the brand successfully launched their class-leading vision, selling vehicles online.

The Context

In the US, traditional in-person transactions have been the only way for OEMs to sell vehicles to customers. That was until Tesla upended the norm and opened the door to the possibility of selling vehicles online – other players followed suit, like Carvana for used vehicles.
With two electric vehicle models entering the US market and a legacy system in place, the automaker wanted to sell their vehicles in the “modern way.” In today’s world, this means selling vehicles online. The automaker’s ask was to develop a journey that would allow a customer to purchase a vehicle from the OEM website, similar to Tesla, while still utilizing a franchised dealer network. The ultimate desire was for this customer journey to exist in the form of a business process map, outlining the necessary steps and enablers to realize the vision.

The Approach

Carlisle walked the client through a methodical and carefully considered project plan to arrive at the intended class-leading vision and associated development roadmap.
  • Vision Building: Carlisle worked with the client to develop an initial brand vision for purchasing vehicles online – considering the steps from acquiring prospective buyers to delivering the purchased vehicle to the customer. Carlisle then conducted extensive research on a group of OEMs and aftermarket e-commerce vehicle sellers to understand their online sales process and associated best practices. These insights helped mold the client’s vision to incorporate class-leading actions
  • Process Validation: With a class-leading vision in hand, Carlisle began interviewing key stakeholders across the client’s organization to understand what parts of the customer journey would be achievable and what needed to change based on the client’s capabilities. With interviews completed, Carlisle adjusted the vision to account for capabilities
  • Business Process Development: Ultimately, Carlisle crafted a business process map and strategy roadmap that outlined the business actions required to execute the class-leading vision

The Result

At the conclusion of the project, the final business process map served as a guiding document for the client to use in the execution of its class-leading vision. In the end, the client was able to successfully construct this process, selling vehicles online to customers in a matter of six-months post engagement.