April '18

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46 THE SHOP APRIL 2018 APRIL 2018 Retail Configurators p.46 A Clear Answer p.54 Pushing the Reset Button p. 58 Products p.60 H ow can you add a touch of high-tech glamor to a boring old showroom and increase sales at the same time? How about by allowing customers to virtually try on the latest acces- sories via a retail configurator. Seeing often is believing when it comes to styling a ride. A standalone system connected to (or updated through) the internet allows curious customers to call up an image of their vehicle and then virtually dress it with the latest wheels and tires, styling components and other restyling favorites. Proponents say the configurators allow buyers to browse in a comfortable, no-pressure setting, and can lead to up-sell oppor- tunities, thanks to their ability to demonstrate visual packages. They are also easier and cheaper to install and use than some tech-adverse shop owners might think. Those unfamiliar with the systems have questions that those who design and sell them are happy to answer. WHAT THEY ARE AddOnAuto's Joe Witt explains retail configurators as: "A software that finds, builds and customizes a desired product." His business is a Reynolds and Reynolds Company out of Dayton, Ohio, where Witt is business manager of vendor relations. The specialty automotive aftermarket, he explains, is an ideal place for this type of technology to thrive. "AddOnAuto holds its place in the point-of-sale side of the industry. Our solution offers billions of accessory visualizations and part information details on most vehicles, 2008 and newer, down to the exact trim level. With audible, visual and sensory stimulation, our configurator provides the foundation to educate customers and give them confidence in their accessory purchase decision." Peter Taylor, Go Rhino's general manager, explains that con- figurators are tools that allow users to sort data and information 46 THE SHOP APRIL 2018 BELIEVING SEEING IS By John Carollo Retail configurators make virtual shopping a breeze. Icon Media's retail iConfigurator library consists of over 5,000 studio-photographed vehicles ranging from 1912 to 2018. (Photo courtesy Icon Media)

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