As important as sales are to a dealership, the service lane is the unsung hero that keeps customers coming back and creates an incredible amount of revenue and profit.
Fixed ops accounts for 11 percent of a dealership’s revenue and 46 percent of its profit. However, only 30 percent of all fixed ops takes place at a dealership. That is a huge disconnect between prioritizing a dealership’s revenue and profit streams with customer preferences. And with customer retention being the No. 1 concern among dealerships, getting customers to visit the service department on a regular basis is critical for a dealership’s success.
Today, dealerships have an incredible opportunity to adapt new technologies to improve the customer experience and hopefully, take back market share from independent service locations. For a long time, dealers thought they were the only game in town in the service space and they did not focus on delivering an exception service experience. Likewise, customers had misperceptions about at a dealership repairs and maintenance costing more so that also kept them away.
What dealerships need to do is cater to their customers and give them good reason to keep coming back. Scheduling a complimentary first service appointment when the car is purchased is a great way to get a customer through the front door of the fixed ops department. Taking care of them from the moment they arrive to when they drive off the lot will earn you a repeat customer and maybe even a customer for life.
How does a dealership create a seamless customer experience? By using the technological tools at their fingertips, dealerships can stand out among their competitors. This includes being mobile and taking advantage of tablets to walk the customer through the entire service process and sending text updates to a customer’s phone.
Technology is already making the difference between the successful and not so successful dealerships. The time to get on board is now.