In today’s digital landscape, building trust with customers virtually is a necessary skill to have in your service department. On today’s show, we are going in-depth on how to increase your profits starting with the initial customer call. We’re pleased to welcome back Don Reed, CEO of DealerPRO Training, one of the nation’s top fixed-ops training platforms for dealers, and host of CBT’s Service Drive with Don Reed, a monthly series that addresses different topics and a variety of challenges that dealers face in today’s market.

Exceptional phone skills are crucial when it comes to converting more calls to appointments in your service drive. They help advisors build trust with customers and give them an overall better first impression of your service drive. Reed begins this segment, talking about how dealers have to up the ante when it comes to phone calls.

Online scheduling, text messages, and zoom meetings are great strategies, but the fact of the matter is, the majority of all service appointments are still coming from the telephone. It’s absolutely essential to train the employees who are fielding those calls, properly. Here are some strategies from Reed that will help your fixed-ops personnel sell service appointments faster and more efficiently:

  1. Connect incoming calls with a designated appointment coordinator. This person can be in the service drive or even the BDC but designate them specifically for appointments.
  2. Every dealership should have carry-overs every single working day. Don’t be afraid to schedule appointments past 3:00 pm.
  3. Make half of your service advisor staff female. Reed strongly believes that women advisors and appointment coordinators often have an aptitude for customer service.
  4. Phone shop your own dealership to find faults and subsequent training opportunities
  5. Build value with service advisor meet-and-greets
  6. Get out of your managerial office and get into your fixed-ops department. Watch your employees perform inspections. Really observe how well the department is functioning.

Did you enjoy this interview with fixed-ops expert Don Reed? Please share your thoughts, comments, or questions regarding this topic with host Jim Fitzpatrick at

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