Adaptation of Adjacent Retail Initiatives Driving Automotive Retail Digitalization

Adaptation of Adjacent Retail Initiatives Driving Automotive Retail Digitalization

The COVID-19 pandemic shows the automotive retail industry’s dependence on physical stores. While these physical stores are expected to continue being relevant in the future, the pandemic has brought digital tools’ role in customer engagement to the forefront.

Every automotive retail stakeholder can transform its customers' appeal by embracing digital transformation and maintaining the customer journey at the crux of digitalization across in-store and online touchpoints. As consumers buy groceries, electronics, and fashion online and depend on digital influencers to guide their purchase preferences, automotive companies are slowly inching closer to giving customers a truly differentiated vehicle purchase experience. While the automotive industry continues to be responsive rather than proactive regarding digital retail innovations, customer delight forms the core of other industries’ existence and survival. Digitally native automotive customers expect the same ease of purchase and experience they find with consumer goods. The challenge lies in identifying the right tools and partners to impact the customer journey positively. This research looks at avenues where new customer-facing tools pioneer customer experience and efficiency and narrows them down to the top 12 non-automotive best practices for potential automotive adoption.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the automotive industry’s focus to digitalizing its retail practices, which was long due. Other factors contributing to automotive retail digitalization are electric vehicles and discussions on the agency model in multiple markets. This continual automotive retail refresh is expected in differentiating a brand or dealership from the competition. The research introduces some of the most efficient and impactful non-automotive digital experiences.


What are current and future trends in the automotive retail industry?
What drives and challenges automotive retail digitalization?
Which non-automotive digital retailing trends are relevant to the automotive retail industry?
How can automotive retail apply cross-industry digital retail innovations?
How are changing customer engagement methods shaping the automotive retail landscape?

  • Strategic Imperatives
    • Why Is It Increasingly Difficult to Grow?
    • The Strategic Imperative 8™
    • The Impact of the Top Three Strategic Imperatives on the Automotive Retail Industry
    • Growth Opportunities Fuel the Growth Pipeline Engine™
  • Growth Opportunity Analysis, Automotive Retail
    • Automotive Retail Scope of Analysis
    • Research Background and Rationale
    • Research Key Findings
    • COVID-19 Pandemic Accelerating Digital Automotive Retail Initiatives
    • Gearing Up for Future Retail Trends and Technologies
    • Automotive Stakeholders Looking for New Retail Tools and Formats
    • Agency Retail Model—Concept and Adoption
    • Agency Model Benefiting Both Manufacturers and Dealerships Despite Apprehensions
    • Rise of Digital Retail Tools—Impact on Customer Journey
    • Key Non-automotive Retail Initiatives for Automotive Retail Innovations
    • Best Practices from Non-automotive Retail and Tesla to Benchmark
    • Growth Drivers for Automotive Retail Digitalization
    • Younger Customers Driving Automotive Retail Digitalization
    • Personalized Digital Tools Aid Customer Engagement and Conversion
    • Growth Restraints for Automotive Retail Digitalization
    • Imperative to Adopt Digital KPI Metrics to Maximize Digital Retail Impact
    • Regional Preferences and Enablers Determine Type of Digital Tools
  • OEM Initiatives, Automotive Retail
    • OEM Initiatives in Agency Retail Model
    • Personalized, Digital Content-based Engagement Helps Conversion
    • Online Retail Evolving Ecosystem of Integrators
    • Digital Retail Initiatives in 2020
  • Cross-industry Retail Innovations, Automotive Retail
    • Key Non-automotive Retail Initiatives for Automotive Retail Innovations
    • Feedback Factory—A Start-up Supermarket
    • Say Technologies—Making Individual Owner's Voice Heard
    • ChargeItSpot—Phone Recharge Lockers
    • Target—Using Stores as Hubs
    • Unanimous.AI—AI-powered Collective Knowledge
    • Passarela—Personalized Multichannel Customer Experience
    • Amazon Go—Checkout Convenience
    • British Airways—Real-time Marketing Engagement
    • Threads Styling—Online Luxury Fashion Retail Without App or Website
    • Soul Machines—AI Customer Engagement
    • YouTube—Shopping Tool Strengthens Marketing Value Proposition
    • HERO(R)— Enabling Omnichannel Experiences (via Chat/Video)
  • Growth Opportunity Universe, Automotive Retail
    • Growth Opportunity 1—Customer Engagement Tools to Ensure Leads Retention and Conversions
    • Growth Opportunity 2—Digital Tools Provide KPIs Apart from Building Unique Customer Journeys
    • Growth Opportunity 3—Control of Sale (and Potential Agency Model Rollout) Lies Mainly in Success of OEMs and Dealerships' Digital Retail Tools
    • Key Takeaways
  • Next Steps
    • Your Next Steps
    • Why Frost, Why Now?
    • Hot Topics Covered by Frost & Sullivan Retail Team

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