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Five Essential Customer Experience Metrics That Will Help You Retain Buyers at Your Dealership

How can you tell if your customers are satisfied with the service and experience they had at your dealership? It can be tempting to only look at sales and revenue. Logic would say that the more sales you are getting, the happier your customers are. While this is a metric that is important, it shouldn’t be the only one you and your team monitor.

Going a bit deeper to understand the true feelings of your customers can give you some valuable insights. For example, sales could be high, but most of your customers could be new. While it is good to break into new audience groups, eventually you will need to understand why new customers are not returning or referring you to friends and family.

The customer experience starts with their first interaction with you to the duration of time they own a car from you. So, how do you ensure the experience leaves them satisfied enough to come back or tell others? Metrics can give you an answer about what is working and what needs to be revamped.

Here are five customer experience and service metrics you want to measure at your dealership consistently. 

Overall Satisfaction

This measurement gives you a baseline view of what your customers think of you. It is very simple to implement and is also straightforward to track. You can activate this metric by asking, how well they would rate their overall service at your dealership. While there are many ways to collect this information numerically, most ask for customers to rate their satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10 with one being “poor” and ten being “excellent.”

You can collect information on this metric by including it in a follow-up email or even having customers fill out a survey before they leave. 

Customer Wait Timescustomer

The vehicle purchasing process can take a while for a variety of reasons. So, a long time for this should be expected. However, you want to make sure that times are not rising larger than the norm. You also want to ensure they are not waiting a long time for service on the phone or in the showroom. Waiting for long periods of time is a surefire way to decrease that overall satisfaction score. A survey revealed that 75 percent of retailers lost customers due to wait-related issues. So, as you ask about their total satisfaction, be sure to inquire about how long they waited for help.

Net Promoter Score

After the Overall Satisfaction Score, this is a significant metric to monitor. Ultimately, your goal is to produce an experience that causes customers to become ambassadors for your dealership brand. So, you want to find out how likely they are to do this. The Net Promoter Score (NPS) will reveal how many of your customers will refer others to your dealership.

NPS can be collected by asking how likely they are to recommend your dealership to a friend or a family member. This question is a great start. However, you also want to see if customers are following through on their response. So, when customers are coming to your dealership for the first time, ask if anyone referred them. You can then compare this data with the NPS to see if customers are telling people about your dealership.


Referrals are important. However, you also want to know how likely customers are going to stay with you when they decide to service their vehicle or purchase a new car. Data shows that companies who can retain customers are known to have higher sales.

So, retention should be a priority. Again, there are two ways you can track this. First, on the front end, you want to see if customers would like to purchase from you again. So, be sure to ask how likely they are to remain with you. However, much like the NPS, you also want to see if customers are staying with you. Ask customers if they have been to your dealership before, and record this in your CRM. 

Meeting Customer Expectations

Ultimately, customers want to buy a car with a process that is efficient and straightforward. They want guidance, convenience, and a process that is as stress-free as possible. You want to see how excellent your dealership staff is at delivering on these expectations.

You can do this by asking customers how well you met their expectations and leaving a space for your customers to go into even more detail. You want to know if there are ways you can alter your processes to add more ease to the purchasing process, and inquiring about how you met customer expectations helps you to see this. 

Final Thoughts

You can only improve on something if you are measuring it and keeping track of its progress. Customer satisfaction is something you and your dealership staff should always strive to improve. The metrics above will help you to not only gain some additional insight, but it will also enable you to incorporate what your customers are looking for into your process. From there, you and your team can begin to see an increase in another vital metric: sales.

Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner
Chanell Turner is a contributing writer and investigative journalist for CBT News.

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