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How Contactless Payments Improved Toyota Pasadena’s Customer Experience During the COVID-19 Crisis

How Contactless Payments Improved Toyota Pasadena’s Customer Experience During the COVID-19 Crisis
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Toyota Pasadena opened its doors over two decades ago. As a family-owned business, everyone who works there strives to make customers feel welcome. They take pride in delivering customer satisfaction built on a solid and trusted relationship.

Joshua Parent has worked at Toyota Pasadena for eight years and is the retail manager of the Parts Department. Josh’s team is responsible for managing payments and has been using PayJunction’s cloud-based payment solution for seven years. They currently have 10 Smart Terminals located throughout the dealership—lobby cashiers, retail and wholesale parts department, and back-office finance—and all transactions flow into a single batch report and bank deposit.

Toyota Pasadena uses the ERA-Ignite Dealer Management System from Reynolds and Reynolds. Invoice numbers for parts and service orders are entered and stored with payment details in the PayJunction portal so staff can quickly locate and match transactions with just a few clicks.

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Challenges Brought on by COVID-19

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Toyota Pasadena closed its Sales department. The Service and Parts departments remained open, initially operating under limited hours. The team quickly jumped online to research safe ways of interacting with customers under social distancing guidelines: limiting capacity in waiting rooms, cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, supporting online ordering, picking up and delivering cars, delivering parts, etc. Customers increased their purchases of certain parts in case further shutdowns occurred, so they could be sure their cars had everything necessary to run smoothly.

Safe and Healthy Payment Practices

Josh’s team needed to adjust payment acceptance methods to accommodate safe payments made in person, via phone or via email. Shortly after COVID-19 arrived in the United States, the PayJunction team reached out to customers including Toyota Pasadena to educate them on new features that eliminate unnecessary interactions with payment terminals by creating a contactless checkout experience. They also reinforced best practices for accepting remote payments via phone or email.

In-Person Payments

The Smart Terminals used by Toyota Pasadena are customer-facing devices, which allows them to be placed on the counter at a safe distance and eliminates the need to pass cards between customers and staff. New safety features allow for signatures to be disabled and receipts to be emailed to customers on request. Toyota Pasadena’s staff cleans and sanitizes the terminals after every use. Josh notes, “Multiple customers have actually thanked me for the change. It helps add a sense of safety and appreciation [for our customers].”

When customers heard ‘no signature necessary’ you could immediately see the relief on their faces.

Josh Parent Retail Parts Manager at Toyota Pasadena

A lot of Toyota Pasadena’s customers are choosing to pay using contactless methods, including contactless credit cards and mobile wallets like Apple Pay and Android Pay. PayJunction recently conducted a customer survey and learned that a majority of business owners are pleased with features that eliminate touchpoints, and 65%—including Toyota Pasadena—plan on continuing with these methods even when the current crisis ends.

Remote Payments

Customers who opt for delivery of vehicles and parts can call Toyota Pasadena and provide credit card details that are entered into the PayJunction Virtual Terminal. Toyota Pasadena also created a form that they can email to customers to capture credit card details that are then keyed into the Virtual Terminal.

The Road Ahead

Josh believes that in some ways the COVID-19 crisis has helped Toyota Pasadena open their eyes to practices that streamline operations and improve the customer experience. He thinks that people have come to appreciate the convenience of contactless payments and of ordering parts online for quick pick-up or delivery.

The dealership has traditionally used paper-based practices in the back office and Josh feels they are now ready to make the leap to more efficient cloud-based software solutions to streamline operations.

Josh is happy with the support he receives from our PayJunction team, and especially how easy we’ve made it for Toyota Pasadena to eliminate touch points on the terminals so that customers feel safe. According to Josh: “PayJunction has helped improve operations for the dealership. I can’t imagine it being any easier.”

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How has your dealership adjusted to COVID-19? Tell us in the comments below!

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PayJunction Team

Content written by the PayJunction team encompasses broad business topics including marketing, brick-and-mortar business operations and management.

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