Dealers should work with customers early on to ensure that their available products meet the needs of contractor purchasing plans in the next year. Helping the contractor to obtain financing for equipment purchases can gain the dealer even more market intelligence for future inventory planning.
“Understanding your customers and using data such as purchasing trends to create effective marketing and sales strategies is crucial,” says Gary Slagle, vice president and general manager of Outdoor Power Equipment for GE Capital Retail Finance. “That’s where a consumer financing program can play an important role, both tactically and strategically. Every sale using a financing program gives the dealer consumer information and insights to help build strong marketing programs that can lead to greater satisfaction, loyalty and referrals.”
GE Capital outdoor power equipment dealers can also build a customer list through their consumer financing program, which can be used to call or survey customers to assess needs. Recently, GE Capital Retail Bank provided results of its 2013 Major Purchase Shopper Study with specific information pertaining to outdoor power equipment shoppers revealing the following:
- Top purchase triggers – 35% said “old model broke”; 34% wanted a “new/upgraded model”
- 60% of outdoor power equipment shoppers purchased on their third visit to the retailer; 25% on second visit; 16% on first visit
- Shoppers spend an average of 65 days researching their purchase
- 21% of GE Capital Retail Bank cardholders spent more than planned on their equipment purchase