Working in dealerships we soon find out that service departments and sales departments often times work as well together as do oil and water. This is a sad and costly common medium as each department and their staff of professionals should ultimately compliment and assist each other for the good of the dealership overall, and more importantly seen as a valuable tool to the customer. In this article I will share effective processes any dealership can start using right away for both service departments and sales departments working together for the good of the customer to make your dealerships overall sales, customer satisfaction, and more importantly customer loyalty sail towards growth for the entire dealership.
- Proper Communication between service advisors, managers, and directors with salespeople and sales managers should work together as a tool to create a customer experience that therefore creates more loyal customers. From the experience the customer received. When a customer is in your service department for three hours plus for basic maintenance and then they are hit unexpectedly with an enormous service list and costs of what’s wrong with their vehicle, there is a good chance they are going to be angered and feel they are being advantage of. On the other hand if a sales advisor had communicated with the customer properly, explaining they are going to need to look at the vehicle more thorough and they will have a salesperson come introduce themselves to the customer during their longer wait time this will open up more doors and opportunities for the dealership. Having and implementing these practices will make the process more engaging for the waiting customer. Not only will this entire process be more engaging for the customer, it will open many doors of opportunity for the dealership, while giving the customer multiple options.
- Selling the Customer the Future. When the customer comes in for what they “assumed” was basic maintenance, maybe one hundred dollars and one to two hours of their time, they will become angered and or annoyed when it’s three to four hours of their time and $2,000 – $3,000. Now if a service advisor had know the customers expectations this could be approached more effectively. The service advisor could have contacted a salesperson. By the service advisor briefing the salesperson on the customer, this now opens many doors for the dealership in a whole… Such as and not limited to:
- More engaging customer experience
- Making the customer feel empowered
- Having the customer see the dealership work together to offer service and sales options
- Keeping the customer from shopping the service bill on their devices while waiting unattended
- The opportunity for a car sale, which therefore will likely create the customer coming back to service for factory maintenance and warranty work
- Service now will recondition the trade in and make as much if not more on the service ticket
- Higher survey scores, more and better online reviews
- More referrals and repeat business from the customer who felt everything above and felt valued and not manipulated or taken advantage of.
Your customers service experience doesn’t have to stink and make them not want to come back. When approached properly with service staff and sales staff working together, it can actually be enjoyable for the customer. Not only being enjoyable for the customer, yet also profitable for both the service department and the sales staff. Now and in the future.
When service departments and sales departments work together they can create a smooth and enjoyable experience for the customer, which will lead to better surveys, more reviews, referrals and repeat business. Doing these things is profitable for all departments and advisors from service and sales involved.
Follow these simple processes and when “Service and Sales are Working Together Can Make Your Dealership Sail.”