According to a report on Livemint, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd is planning to launch a website for car buyers, where they can compare prices and gauge car features. The website is meant to compete directly with platforms like CarWale and CarDekho, which are already offering such services. The aim of the said website is to boost sales leads from data generated from queries shared with their own car dealers. Car manufacturing companies right now get their data that is shared on platforms with other car manufacturing companies.
“Most of the customers in the urban or in the semi-urban cities and towns do extensive research before going to the dealerships and most of them also compare products of their choice with other offerings in the same category on these websites,” The Livemint quoted an anonymous person. “In the end, a customer has to put his or her mobile number and email address, and the lead generated goes to the dealer of that company as well as others. So, Maruti with this new website would not have to share the customer data that gets generated online.”
The largest car manufacturing company in India, Maruti is using a team of engineers to build the platform. Reportedly, the platform is not meant for commercial use by Maruti but will help car dealers to profit.
“This decision makes sense for Maruti as it may be losing some customers to competitors, though Maruti also gets to know about the customers who want to buy a product of a rival organisation. Most of the customers will invariably look for Maruti’s products and others can have access to the data,” Livemint’s anonymous source said.
So far no comments have been received from Maruti Suzuki, however, the building of the website will be a new move among car manufacturing companies, because mostly, car manufacturing companies stick to manufacturing and marketing, while dealers handle sales-related activites.
Anil Sharma, associate director at Markets and Markets, a global consulting firm told Livemint, “The investment required for the venture must be minuscule and will not be of a concern for a huge corporate like Maruti Suzuki. The concern is genuine since enquiries get shared with rival companies and sometimes, the customer gets calls from dealerships and sometimes from multiple dealerships of the same company.”
The June quarter results reveal that Maruti Suzuki has a hold over almost 51% of the domestic automobile market. Currently, Maruti Suzuki India is also hosting a three-week Freedom Service Camp from August 10th to 30th at its dealer workshops across the country. This initiative aims to strengthen the company’s service experience for its customers.
Customers who drive in to the dealer workshops during this campaign will have access to special offers on extended warranty, parts, accessories, and service labour charges. They can avail offers on labour charges for car body repair as well. They will also receive car examinations by trained and well-qualified technicians.