Dealerships must increase focus on small matters such as better coffee facilities to win the battle for customer retention, showroom research has claimed.
The study, by Complete Automotive Solutions (CAS) – part of the Manheim Group – concluded that dealers need to go the extra mile to boost aftersales opportunity.
Software provider CAS discovered 56% of consumers felt better coffee facilities, such as bringing in a branded coffee service, would improve their showroom experience.
Free Wi-Fi was a benefit 55% of respondents would like to see, while 43% specified daily newspapers and current magazines could make time pass faster.
A children’s toy area was an improvement requested by 30% of those questioned.
Meanwhile, 31% of dealer respondents felt aftersales were more profitable than expected in 2012, confirming it as an increasingly important part of their business strategy.
Mark Hampson, Commercial Director at CAS, said: “Aftersales remains a hugely important revenue stream for dealerships and improving the customer’s experience has become even more significant in this very competitive market place.
“In fact, looking at the results of our research, it would seem that even the littlest things can make a difference.
“Actually, most dealers are already doing the right things, but there is always room for improvement.
“The marketplace remains hugely competitive and anything dealers can do to offer customers added value for using their services will not only help maintain a strong customer portfolio but also assist them in gaining additional clients.
“An example of this would be the value that consumers place on a pick-up/drop-off service, with nearly 58% of those we asked in our recent research saying they would expect this service from their dealership.
“Although this is a simple provision that can help keep customers happy, incentives such as this involve investment by the dealer.
“The question is: can dealers actually afford not invest in these services?”
Elsewhere, CAS’s customer relationship management software packages can help dealers monitor customer satisfaction levels and improve areas of concern where necessary.
Dealer solutions include a voice recording solution, a digital call log manager and media tracking.
CAS say all are designed to minimise missed revenue and ensure that enquiries are dealt with quickly and efficiently by the correct member of staff.
Image courtesy of mercedes818, with thanks.