Last year, Fiat was devising new strategies to develop the digital channel. In addition to optimizing the performance of all its national and international websites, Fiat planned to introduce more interactive multimedia content. "Fiat's collaboration with Akamai began in 2007 and, as the years went by, Akamai became one of our key partners. In the last few years, seeing advancements in multimedia technology as well as new users' behaviours, we felt the need to devise a new visual experience strategy by improving the quality of our online content. We needed to introduce richer, multimedia content and to do so we required the assistance of the top experts of the industry: Akamai among them," explained Daniele Vigna, Program Manager at Fiat Group Automobiles.
Reducing abandonment rates
The web site is one of the main points of contact with the customer, in fact, it is one of the key ways of collecting information and delivering Fiat's brand image. After assessing the performance of its international web sites, Fiat found that end users in certain countries, such as Japan, experienced abandonment rates above average. More often than not, page load times on the Japanese language site were so slow that the site was almost unusable: customer satisfaction levels could therefore be improved. After implementing Akamai Dynamic Site Accelerator Secure, a solutionthat accelerates the delivery of applications and dynamic content in a proven, totally secure environment, the performances of all Fiat web sites improved dramatically. For instance, page load times on the Alfa Romeo Website have been improved by 195 percent on average on a global level, and by as much as 281 percent in individual cases (e.g. in India). Moreover, thanks to Akamai, the page display time has improved by 66 percent, with a consequent reduction of the abandonment rate.
Improving the mobile experience
In just one year, Fiat has seen more and more users access www.Fiat.it via mobile devices. In fact, as many as 12 percent of total visits took place via a mobile device. To ensure an optimal experience for those mobile devices users, Fiat took advantage of the Akamai Mobile Detection and Redirect solution. Akamai's Intelligent Platform intercepts a customer's request for the Fiat Web site, detects whether the request is coming from a smart phone or tablet device and instantly re-directs the user to a site optimized for mobile browsing. In this way, Akamai improves the online experience for the visitors, reducing the loading time of the site while making it easier for Fiat to manage the detection of mobile devices.
Improving the performance of its CRM portal
Fiat's global reach is supported by a huge network of dealers and authorized service stations located in almost 100 countries, all over the world who have access to a web-based CRM application, called Fiat Link. The portal is part of a project whose aim is to offer high-quality services that help Fiat retain customers through their relationship with dealers. In order to deliver the same level of customer service on a global level, Fiat needed to ensure the same ease of access to the Fiat Link portal throughout the network. With Akamai's Web Application Accelerator solution, Fiat could improve both reliability and performance of Fiat Link by up to 25-30 percent in Europe and 200-300 percent in Brazil and China.
"A fast performing web site proves that a company is truly customer-oriented and willing to offer the highest level of service to its clients," stated Mark Vargo, senior vice president and general manager, Akamai EMEA. "Akamai's technology allows Fiat to ensure a seamless service to both desktop and mobile web users as well as to the company's network of dealers"
"With Akamai, we can offer customers worldwide a seamless online experience, allowing us to effectively export the excellence of the automotive made in Italy abroad. Akamai's technology plays an important role in helping us develop our online channel," concludes Vigna.
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Fiat S.p.A concentrates its mission on the automotive industry. The Group, whose global reach increased thanks to its partnership with Chrysler, designs, produces and sells cars for the mass market under the Fiat, Lancia, Alfa Romeo, Fiat Professional and Abarth brands and luxury cars under the Ferrari and Maserati brands. Fiat's portfolio has recently been expanded to include the Jeep and Chrysler brands, whose models, realised abroad, are now being distributed in Europe through two new networks - Lancia-Chrysler and Jeep - which, together, count more than 1,000 dealers. Fiat S.p.A. is also active in the components sector, through Magneti Marelli, Teksid and Fiat Powertrain, and the production systems sector, through Comau. Visit: www.fiatspa.com