This Company Profile features 3D Golf Cart Builder, an online software tool that is a custom golf cart configurator for custom golf cart builders. It allows people to build and completely customize their cart online, in 3D from a computer, tablet or smartphone and get a real-time quote.
We spent some time with Chris Anderson, CEO of 3D Golf Cart Builder, to learn more about this cutting-edge tool that helps cart dealers streamline their cart sales.
- Company Name: 3D Golf Cart Builder
- Company Website: 3dgolfcartbuilder.com
- Principal Owner: Chris Anderson
- Company Headquarters: Charleston, SC
- Phone Number: (843) 800-1040
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/3dgolfcartbuilder
GCMAG: Hi Chris. We appreciate you taking the time to chat with us about your software, 3D Golf Cart Builder. Tell us more about that.
CHRIS: The 3D Golf Cart Builder is pretty much exactly what the name indicates. Basically, it’s an online configurator where potential customers can literally build a completely custom cart from the ground up in 3D. They start by selecting the cart they want, either a Club Car Precedent or EX-GO TXT. From there, they can choose the year of their cart, the body style, seat cushion styles and colors, tires, wheels, roof, dashboard and more. They can rotate it, see it from every angle and add and remove hundreds of accessories and thousands of color combinations.
Meanwhile, the software is collecting all of this data and computing the cost for each option in order to provide a detailed quote.
The 3D Golf Cart Builder is mainly a marketing tool for cart dealerships who build custom carts. The idea in mind here is that dealers promote the 3D Cart Builder to potential customers who go through the entire online build process. When they are finished, both the customer and the dealer get emailed the complete golf cart quote, with multiple pictures and a “window sticker” type PDF. The dealer has the customer’s email address and can follow up with them. The customer can order their cart online or print off the quote and visit the dealership in person to formally place the order.
The 3D Cart Builder has dramatically simplified the custom cart buying process by streamlining the customer’s ability to select the options they want in the comfort of their own home. We feel it’s the future of custom cart sales. Especially now with our current climate, it can helps reduce the need for multiple trips and in person meetings.
GCMAG: It sounds like this can profoundly change the way people buy custom rebuilds. How did you get started doing this?
CHRIS: Like most things, this business kind of happened by accident. I own a golf cart dealership myself and over the years I noticed that people looking for a custom cart would visit our dealer and ask a thousand questions and without a complete picture of the finished cart it’s often times hard to visualize color combinations and would often take a lot of time to finally get to the bottom line of the custom cart they wanted.
I asked myself how could I make this easier? I thought that if there was a software program that could be installed on a touch-screen monitor in my showroom, where the customer could go to the “Design Studio” and select everything they wanted individually, and have the software collect the data and spit out the finished product and printed quote. I felt it would dramatically save time, both for the customer and my sales staff. This is similar to what the automaker Tesla is doing online. So, no problem right? I searched everywhere on the internet and outside of some very generic, inferior solutions, there was no existing software that could accomplish this for the golf cart industry.
So I had a decision to make and being a little tech-savvy myself, I set out to build my own configurator. What seemed like a simple project ended up being a very expensive, two-year journey that required me hiring international programmers, designers and 3D modelers. But the end result is that the 3D Golf Cart Builder is the only type of configurator that can be a complete solution for a dealer.
What I originally envisioned as being an “in-house” application, quickly morphed into both and in-house and an online solution, -meaning, a dealer can have this inside their dealer with an iPad or a monitor and in addition, offer this as an online tool on their website. It became such a huge hit in my own dealership that I realized I could offer this to other dealers as well and thus the business was born.
GCMAG: That is an incredible story. How many employees do you have? Tell us about your team.
CHRIS: We only have about 8 people on staff. The beauty about the software is that once it was developed, it pretty much is autopilot. We have 2 programmers, 2 designers, a customer service rep and a small sales team.
GCMAG: So outside of the obvious, what are the benefits for a dealer to integrate 3D Golf Cart Builder into their business?
CHRIS: We feel there are numerous benefits. But the main one, like I mentioned earlier, is that ultimately you are using technology as a salesperson. Much of the “sales” process is done on the internet so that by the time the customer comes into the dealership (if they ever do because they can buy it online) they already know what they want, how much it costs, etc. So the in-house sales person is really just taking the order at that point.
Another benefit is that having the 3D Builder elevates the credibility of the dealer. It makes them look more tech-savvy and cutting edge. In addition, it increases the profit on custom carts because it opens up every area of the customization process and will suggest options and accessories that they may not have even thought about. Sometimes, people don’t know what they don’t know.
And finally, the 3D Cart Builder is a profoundly effective marketing tool. It allows you to reach people online and have them play around with a really cool, fun, interactive tool that ultimately captures their name and email address that the dealer can use to follow up with. Simply put, it sells more carts.
GCMAG: I’ve spent some time on the builder myself and you’re right… It really is a lot of fun to build any cart you want. What’s the future of 3D Golf Cart Builder?
CHRIS: We just want to expand our dealer base and get the word out. In our opinion, there are two types of golf cart dealers out there: those that have really integrated technology into their business and those that are still a little “old school” in their thinking. We really want to capitalize on the tech-savvy dealers and help the “old school” dealers get caught up. We also want to expand the software capabilities of the builder to include more cart brands like Yamaha, Star EV, Tomberlin and others.
We are constantly adding new parts and accessories too. Every time a new wheel or body kit comes out we have the designer 3D model it and work with the manufactures so we are ready when the product launches and every dealer gets all the newest updates for free. They simply choose which parts, carts and accessories they want to showcase with their individual pricing.
GCMAG: It sounds like you guys are really poised to grow. Is there anything you’d like to add?
CHRIS: Sometimes we get resistance from dealers who think that the integration of the software might be too complicated or require a lot of internet expertise. The great thing is that it doesn’t. Our team pretty much handles the integration for the dealer so it has become very simple to get it up and running in days, not weeks or months. And it works with any website.
Though 3D Golf Cart Builder is very affordable, sometimes dealers find it difficult to justify the extra expense. The reality is that if a dealer just sold one extra cart every few months as a result of our builder, the software would pay for itself.
GCMAG: Chris, thanks for taking the time to tell us more about your unique company. I wish you guys great success in the future.
For more information on 3D Golf Cart Builder visit their website at 3DGolfCartBuilder.com or call them at (843) 800-1040.