Mike Macaulay AutoProtect’s Head of Corporate Sales:
The key to excelling through customer service is to create strong foundations that make success inevitable. Clear processes, training and a customer friendly buying environment, can combine to create a customer experience, where it is not just a car the customers buy, it is ‘their’ dealer they purchasing as well.
- Ensure the dealership is welcoming on the phone, online and physically with plenty of accessible parking and comfortable reception area.
- Mystery shop leading competitors and your own dealership to benchmark the service experience.
- Review your online promotion of add-on services to ensure it is working to raise product awareness when customers search for their car on your site.
- Use silent sales tools in the showroom to raise awareness of series such as Paint Protection and SMART Insurance.
- Train and coach every customer-facing person to understand all of the features and benefits of your add-on products – for example, not all GAP products are the same.
- Always understand the customer’s circumstances and motivations by asking questions and listening actively to the information they provide.
- Review your business’ FCA compliance approach to ensure every person really lives TCF principles.
- Offer every customer, every add-on product; never assume they do not want it but do not be pushy, let them buy products that meet their needs.
- Don’t sell transactionally do sell consultatively.
- Price products and services fairly and transparently.
- Be obsessive about product quality – PDI all cars rigorously and let every customer know any identified faults, good for Consumer Rights Act support, highly effective for long term customer advocacy.
- Spend the hand over ensuring the customer know the intricacies of their new purchase and explain the after sales services, it is an ideal time to introduce the extended warranty option and/or service plan.
- Ensure all customer vehicle details are accurately added into the DMS to support relevant future contact for renewal sales or services such as extended warranties.
- Follow up the new customer a week after purchase to ensure everything is going well and never be afraid to ask for a reference from the customer’s family/friends.
- Choose suppliers whose products and services share a passion for excellence in product and service it will serve you well in the long term.