Rockar has launched its new Jaguar Land Rover store at Westfield Stratford. Situated on The Street, adjacent to M&S, the store is an innovative new way for consumers to experience the Jaguar and Land Rover brands, and complements the two digital click-to-buy websites launched by Rockar last month.
The new Westfield Stratford store reflects the experience gained by Rockar over the last two years operating the industry’s first permanent car stores at Bluewater and Westfield Stratford. For the first time, however, Rockar’s innovative concept, which reflects changes in consumer buying behaviour and growing trends in the fashion sector, is being implemented by a premium automotive company.
The store has been conceived to reflect its setting in one of the busiest shopping centres in Europe, one that serves a young, brand- and technology-focused customer base. Designed by Dalziel and Pow, the store is inspired by its setting amongst some of the best-known fashion brands in Europe, with the store window serving as a dynamic point-of-sale akin to a fashion brand with constantly changing displays and content to create engagement with Westfield Stratford’s visitors. Rockar’s focus on creating a positive customer experience has also been further enhanced, both to complement the Jaguar Land Rover brands and to reflect the high levels of service provided by brands such as John Lewis and Apple at Westfield Stratford.
Central to this are the Rockar ‘Angels’, a team of product experts recruited from the high-end retail and hospitality industries to guide customers through buying a new car, but without the pressure to make a purchase. Reflecting this role of helping, instead of selling, the Angels are paid a salary rather than commission.
The focus of the Rockar Jaguar Land Rover store is to create brand engagement, empowering the customer to purchase a car with an experience that puts them very firmly in control. Utilising Rockar’s industry-first technology, customers will be able to configure their new car, agree a value for their trade-in and arrange finance using in-store technology that makes the process seamless, fast and enjoyable. Should the customer prefer, however, they can complete their purchase at home, as they would buying fashion, lifestyle or accessory products.
In another nod to the fashion industry and the growing trend for creating bespoke pieces, the Angels will help customers to use the store’s ‘create’ space, which includes colour swatches, examples of interior trim and samples of the interior choices available, to design a car that reflects their personality.
Simon Dixon, Founder of Rockar, said: “Rockar has responded to a shift in purchasing behaviour to create a car retail experience that responds to consumers’ changing needs in today’s digital age. Our research has revealed that customers are looking for more accessible ways to buy a car that are more aligned to how they shop for clothes, food and gadgets. Rockar’s recent success has proved this research with over 60% of its customers now buying online.”
Jeremy Hicks, Managing Director, Jaguar Land Rover UK, added: “As the Jaguar Land Rover family grows with great new models and new buyers, our approach needs to adapt with relevant, innovative ways of engaging with a new type of customer. We have been looking at how we can offer our customers more choice and more flexibility over how they buy a Jaguar or Land Rover, and adding the Rockar model to our network adds an exciting new way to do just that.”
The Rockar Jaguar Land Rover store is a distilliation of the highly successful model launch by Rockar at Bluewater two years ago. Since then, Rockar has helped drive a significant shift in demographics amongst its customers, creating valuable incremental sales for car brands. Rockar has found, for example, that more than 54% of its buyers have been women. Furthermore, the average age of customers has been just 39 years old, compared to an industry average of over 50 years old. With the no-pressure approach of the ‘Angels’ in-store, Rockar has also found that around 60% of customers will leave the store and complete their purchase online later. Since it launched two years ago, Rockar has logged over 420,000 journeys on its transactional websites.