Think about the last time you walked into your favorite store. What sets it apart from average or poor shopping experiences? Is it the pleasant attitude of the staff? Is the décor sleek and engaging? Is it easy to find what you need? Now, think about how these experiences could be integrated into the customer experience at your dealership.
You may think that offering a “premium” customer experience has to be a drain on the finances, but there are things you can do to make customers feel like they are the priority while also staying on budget. So, how can you implement low-cost premier customer experiences at your dealership? Feel free to take a look at our tips below.
A Smile is Priceless
Merely training your staff to be friendly and courteous can go a long way. Having the first people your customers see greet them with a smile, thank them for coming in, and asking how they can help is a premium dealership customer experience idea that costs you nothing.
For example, if you have ever taken a lunch break to visit Chick-Fil-A, what is the first thing you notice (other than the smell of their signature dish)? That employees are ready to help and will always end the interaction with “My pleasure.” Customers are drawn to this type of friendliness and cordiality. So, ensure your staff is upholding this principle.
Add Personalization When You Can
This practice can start before your customers even walk into the showroom. Use those interest forms and inquiries to your advantage by ensuring your staff is quickly following up with customers that express interest in test drives and car purchases.
Then, instruct your team to ask questions about model preferences, budget limitations, preferred features, and lifestyle situations that would help the sales team already have recommendations ready for them when they come into the showroom. Customers will appreciate that you and your team took the time to find vehicle options that go along with their preferences before their arrival.
Tighten Up the Buying Process When Possible
Many consumers feel that the car buying process has become longer than they would prefer. A way you can combat this is to see where you can tighten up the process. Can you auto-populate some of the customer’s contact and financial information into your system for the loan approval process? Is there an organization system for quickly locating specific models of cars? If you can save some time, your customers will thank you for it.
Send a “Personal Thank You”
This step only costs you the price of a few cards and some pens (as well as postage). Tell your new customers that you appreciate their car or service purchase by sending a thank you note. Mention something memorable about their experience in the showroom, thank them for their business, and include the signature of yourself and the salesperson they worked with.
If you want to go the extra mile, add a tin of cookies or a five-dollar gift card. This gesture lets customers know you genuinely care about their business, and appreciate them selecting your dealership to make their purchase.
Keep the Relationship Going Even After the Experience
Today, tools like email and social media marketing allow you to stay in touch with your audience even after they leave your dealership. Through email, you can send them pointed reminders about maintenance and repairs, and select days like birthdays or the anniversary of their first purchase to offer coupons or discounts. Many times, creating premier dealership customer experiences are intertwined with showing appreciation. So, capitalizing on ways to continue the customer experience after their purchase will help you stand out in their mind.
Eighty-six percent of buyers are willing to pay more for great customer service. You may think offering a premier customer service experience means you have to expand your budget considerably. However, while installing that new digital display, or creating a children’s play area may be necessary for the long-run, you can get started in the short-term with premier dealership customer experiences by making small changes.
Training your staff to ask the right questions, summarize what customers need, and greeting them with a smile is an excellent start. Also, following up with a “check-in” call and sending out a “thank you note” also makes customers feel that the money they spent is appreciated. So, take a look at the tips above and see how you can fit these into your dealership customer experience strategies. Before you know it, you will be creating long-term loyal customers without having to empty the bank.