A dealership builds customers' loyalty in its service department, through positive encounters with high-quality managers and advisers. A bad experience can derail that relationship and thwart loyalty. Here are several steps you can take to promote a pleasant customer experience in your shop. 1. Underpromise and overdeliver: Don't tell a customer that service will take 30 minutes when it's more likely to take an hour. If a service order will take 45 to 50 minutes, say it will take an hour. This puts the customer back in his or her vehicle sooner than expected.
If customers leave the dealership while their vehicles are serviced, ask what kind of notification they prefer: text, email or phone. That will help enhance the journey through the service process.
If you find you can't finish a job within the time you estimated, let the customer know immediately. If you unexpectedly exceed the price you quoted, the service adviser should call the customer before you do additional work.
Aside from softening the blow of unanticipated news, the customer is likely to appreciate the contact. Full transparency is key to establishing trust.
2. Keep talking:Solid communication is just as important between service advisers and technicians as it is with customers. A good adviser communicates customers' concerns about their vehicles to technicians efficiently and comprehensibly. The fewer questions a tech has, the quicker the work gets done.
3. Know your customers: Customers notice when you remember their names and details about their personal lives. Building relationships is a vital part of a service manager's or adviser's job.
When you write up a repair order, ask questions that will enable more intimate conversation starters the next time the customer comes in. This shows you're invested in the relationship — not just the profit associated with his or her visit.
Ask your service customers when they might want to trade in their current vehicle for something new. Maybe it's when the service required for maintenance reaches a certain level, or when the model's design changes.
Get to know your customers well enough to understand when a lifestyle change might call for a different vehicle. A child seat crammed into the back of a subcompact car might stimulate a useful conversation.
Learning your customers' vehicle preferences and driving styles will increase their satisfaction and help drive your service business.