Buying a new car is one of the single most expensive experiences in life, and with car purchases being a relatively infrequent occasion, many buyers can feel nervous or uncomfortable when browsing at car dealerships.
Most modern car dealerships take customer comfort extremely seriously, and ensure that dealerships are a pleasant and comfortable environment, where customers are able to relax and hopefully have a painless purchase experience.
Coffee has become an important part of this process, with hot drinks being a great way for car dealerships to instantly put customers at ease ahead of a discussion about their requirements. It’s now such a core part of visiting a car dealership, that those who don’t offer a cuppa on the way through the door are in the minority, and customers are far less likely to feel comfortable and important visiting these sites.
For this to work as well as it can, though, car dealerships need to be able to rely on a commercial coffee machine to work consistently and reliably, and capable of dispensing great coffee for every customer. They can only achieve this by having a quality coffee vending machine supplier in place. Today, we look at how important it is to get this right.
The impact of coffee on purchase decisions
It’s not all about comfort and relaxation – a recent study of French retail shoppers showed that those consumers who drank caffeinated coffee, rather than decaffeinated, felt more excited about their purchases, spent more money in total, and bought a greater number of items.
It was also shown that consumers who drank caffeinated coffee were more likely to make impulsive purchases, and these tended to be less ‘useful’ items and more ‘exciting’ items, which explains why some retailers offer free coffee to their visitors.
So, it’s not just important from a feel-good perspective, but it has also been demonstrated to add value to retailers to have great quality coffee available to customers as it reduces their inhibitions and encourages more impulsive buying.
However, consumers enjoying their coffee experience is a huge factor in whether they’ll enjoy their time and feel excited at your car dealership – if the coffee is rubbish, they’ll likely not finish it, or feel distinctly unexcited.
Making minutes feel like seconds
The most obvious reason for having a commercial coffee machine at a car dealership is that it keeps consumers preoccupied whilst your sales team finish up with other customers. Everybody knows that dealerships can be teeming with potential customers on weekends, and there isn’t always enough staff on hand to keep everyone flowing as quickly as you’d like.
Coffee and other hot beverages help you keep your customers comfortable whilst they’re waiting for salespeople to become available, usually in a sales area where they can flick through brochures for the latest models and have a stress-free walk around the display models. With coffee in hand, it’s sure to take 10 minutes or so to finish a drink before the clock watching begins again.
Why is it so important to choose a quality vending supplier?
Coffee vending machine suppliers come in many shapes and sizes, with some focusing on delivering high volume commercial coffee machine sales but not offering operating of the machines, leaving dealerships to manage the cleaning, refilling and maintenance of the machines themselves.
Other companies provide a more bespoke solution that accounts for the needs of the specific dealership (or group of dealerships), which will include a fully managed service whereby the supplier will arrange for multiple visits throughout the week to replenish, clean and stock manage your commercial coffee machine.
Whichever supplier you choose to work with, it’s really important that they offer support for your business and your machine throughout the week. Having your machine run out of ingredients or require maintenance means someone in your already busy team will have to take time out to resolve the issues.
When it comes to such big purchases that may be critical to achieving your monthly or quarterly sales targets, you want every single customer to be happy, comfortable and view your business positively. When machines are out of use, this doesn’t give a good impression, and those minutes sat in the waiting area can feel like an eternity.
It’s not just about machine downtime, though. It’s equally important that your vending supplier understands how to configure and calibrate your machine to get the best quality coffee and the finest taste. It might be an attractive proposition to reduce the amount of ground coffee that goes into each espresso brew, commercially, but the right supplier will make sure the drink tastes great.
You’re far more likely to leave a great taste in the mouth of your consumers if you focus on drink quality – pun intended.