Ford Seeing Success Worldwide with New Smart Labs
One of the growing trends in the auto industry is yielding to customers’ need to browse and shop in environments apart from your traditional dealership. As could be expected, Ford Motor Company is among the companies leading the way with its Ford Smart Labs, a new retail experiment that typically relies on foot traffic from shopping malls and similar environments.
In 2019 alone, the number of Ford Smart Labs worldwide increased exponentially with launches on four continents. New Smart Labs popped up in Quebec City, Canada; Shanghai, China; Sydney, Australia; Oslo, Norway; Brussels, Belgium; Saarbrucken, Germany; and Waasland, Belgium. According to Ford Director of Global Customer Experience Robert De Filippo, the success of the concept thus far has encouraged Ford to continue expanding in 2020 and beyond.
Ford Smart Labs get leads
Ford notes that its Smart Labs have been particularly effective when it comes to conquests: 75 percent of customers who begin the purchase process at a Ford Smart Lab are new to Ford.
“Smart Labs are designed for everyone — they give potential customers an opportunity to explore our vehicles in an open, social, and engaging environment, often for the first time,” said Michael Clements, General Manager Operations, Australian Automotive Group and the Sydney, Australia Smart Lab location.
The Smart Lab concept has been beneficial for dealers as well. Smart Lab operators in Australia, China, and Norway all cite the unique atmosphere as a benefit, helping generate new sales by appearing more exciting and not relying on the perceived pressures of visiting a dealership showroom.