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AI-powered customer service: elevating dealership experiences

Artificial intelligence can increase customer satisfaction when used properly—especially given its speed and learning abilities

We are certain you’ve heard many stories about artificial intelligence in the last year. Artificial intelligence can be an effective tool for marketing, writing, content creation, and customer service. In many ways, customer service is an area where artificial intelligence is able to take some of the load off your dealership team, but how do you apply it? Let’s take a look at the capabilities of artificial intelligence and how it might work for your stores.

How AI can help with customer service at your dealership

Let’s start by establishing something here—customer service is a huge part of the benefits of a customer working with your dealership. Customers might even select your dealership on the basis of hearing a friend, family member, or even review suggest that something went somewhat wrong and the personnel within responded and fixed the issue promptly.

With that said, AI is good at a few parts of customer service. If you do use artificial intelligence emails, chats, or prompts for customer service, configure it in a way that answers some commonly asked questions.

These questions can range from service and sales hours to basic questions about the dealership that don’t require your direct involvement. AI also has the potential to answer questions like how long it will take to get loan paperwork, whether or not they need an appointment for service or sales and anything with a fairly common and solid yes or no answer.

And that’s where you might draw a line, in some cases.

When should customer service requests get to a human?

AI works within prompts. You write a question in natural language, or potentially with pre-set prompts, and get an answer. The challenge here is that given the complexities of selling a car and taking care of the customer afterward, you can get some long prompts that require a more significant answer that a robot will have a hard time producing a satisfactory answer. The result can be lost business.

Our best suggestions here are to give the customer the constant ability to chat with a human and have your artificial intelligence system detect when responses are over a certain length. Verbose questions might require verbose reasoning and a verbose answer. A person asking for a towing capacity of a truck likely just needs a number or a chart for an answer. Instead, a person asking about specifics of their own deal tends to be a longer query that AI needs help with.

To be fair, some humans might need help with these questions too!

Tracking Needs

If you use an artificial intelligence system, you’ll want to ensure that the system is able to categorize what kinds of things customers are looking for. This will provide a window both into what processes within your dealership tend to have problems or questions and gives you the opportunity to train your artificial intelligence system to know how to respond to specific questions.

Think of this like an old-school complaints box or when human resources collect grievances from employees. You’ll know where your problems are.

Integrating People and AI for a Great Experience

Let’s assume that you have a business development center—or at the very least, managers and salespeople taking care of customer needs as sent in through an AI system. My suggestion here is to have the AI system clearly communicate that they are being referred to a human and that all the info they provided will be given to a person.

At that point, you want to ensure that your dealership has the right training and patience to read through an artificial intelligence system message. To be fair, this isn’t a lot unlike reading through a regular service or sales lead, only they might find themselves seeing a whole discussion and lots of info within.


Artificial intelligence can increase customer satisfaction when used properly—especially given its speed and learning abilities. Just be careful not to ask AI to do too much because customer service stumbles are easy to make and hard to fix. Identify what you would like AI to do, then set about improving both internal processes and employee training to help respond to the situations it cannot.

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Ben Stewart
Ben Stewart
Ben is a contributing writer and reporter for CBT News with 10 years of dealership experience in automotive marketing. Ben loves all things cars and putting together strategies that help dealerships succeed.

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