Buckeye Honda has worked to overcome inventory shortages by creating an interactive research hub where online shoppers can get an up-close look at a vehicle even if it's not in stock.
The Lancaster, Ohio, dealership deployed a virtual configurator on its site this spring called izmoEmporio that lets users personalize new Honda models with accessories and get 360-degree views of the exterior and interiors.
It has been operational for only a few months, but the configurator — a relatively rare offering on a dealership's website — is fostering engagement with online shoppers and helping the store sell more accessories. Management says consumers who use the tool are spending an average of two minutes on it, and the dealership considers them higher-quality leads than typical website visitors.
Consumers can access the technology on a phone, tablet or computer.
More than 300 vehicles covering the full spectrum of Honda's lineup have been configured on the site so far.