A great customer experience is everything.
Creating brand loyalty in today's computerized world requires excellence and speed at every step of the automotive customer lifecycle, from first contact to repurchasing. If your dealership can't keep pace, we can guide you through a digital transformation to streamline your operations.
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After handing over the keys to your sales customers, you might be wondering how to keep them coming back to your service department (and not only for that first service appointment but for the long haul). Based on findings from our 2023 National Consumer Survey, we’ve identified several reasons why customers choose to return to the dealership they purchased from for service. Keep reading to learn how to appeal to more potential service customers—and how to gain an advantage over the competition.
Vehicle Service That Shines: What Inspires Customers to Return
1. Enticing Maintenance Plans
It’s no surprise that one of the biggest tools in your arsenal is a prepaid maintenance plan. In fact, it’s the biggest draw we discovered for customers returning to the dealership where they purchased or leased a vehicle.
If your store offers your service customers a maintenance plan that is only valid at your dealership, that helps drive high retention. For the customer, though, it helps relieve the concerns of maintaining their vehicle and helps build stronger loyalty (and a higher customer lifetime value)—making maintenance plans a win-win.
2. Factory-Trained Techs and OEM Parts
It’s true, some customers feel they will save money by heading to an independent auto repair shop. But according to our survey, the second biggest benefit boosting customer retention for your dealership is the expertise only you can provide.
That’s why it’s crucial to promote your factory-trained technicians and OEM parts selection to sales customers—especially in your marketing communications. Let them know that when they come to you to have their vehicle serviced, they’ll receive specialized, efficient care from an expert team who uses only genuine OEM parts to help maintain their investment.
3. Service Center Amenities
We’re not only talking about coffee or popcorn—go above and beyond in your vehicle service center amenities to improve the customer experience and leave aftermarket repair shops in the dust.
Some of the top amenities to amp up across your service introductions and marketing campaigns include:
- Online service appointment scheduling
- Vehicle pickup and delivery service
- Comfortable seating, free wi-fi, and child- or pet-friendly areas
- Loyalty rewards or referral programs
- Vehicle maintenance reminders via email and/or SMS messaging
- Maintenance discounts, exclusive holiday events, and other service offers
4. Top-Tier Customer Experience
When a customer has a positive, seamless experience, they remember it (and often recommend that business to friends and family). There is no survey needed to know that it’s one of the main drivers of high customer retention.
Whether your staff are selling a brand-new model or a part for a DIY repair, be sure to make every customer interaction an exceptional one. Keep your customer communications authentic and personalized while helping each customer find the right vehicle, service, part, or plan that fits their needs. This will go far in building lifelong customers that will return for service, trade-ins, and sales.
Want to Revolutionize Your Service Customer Retention Rates?
We can help! With Essentials, our ownership marketing solution, we can help your store formulate a targeted marketing plan that draw sales customers back in for service, improving the customer experience and increasing service customer retention, all the way to eventual repurchase. For a live demo, contact us today.
All | November 17, 2023