5 Star Reputation – Digital Experts for Independent Dealers

How to buckle up and thrive in the declining automotive market

When the motorway is clear everyone gets to where they want to go. But all of a sudden, there’s some roadworks, a broken-down vehicle, an oil spill… and the motorway grinds to a halt. Anyone who knows how to sell cars benefits when things are going well, but knowing how to navigate when traffic slows down is the key to success.

Those dealers who understand the importance of customer relationship management using a controlled CRM – driven by accurate and valid data – allows them to stand head and shoulders above the rest and continue to grow by keeping their retention rates high.

By sticking to strict processes and principles, you can nurture your customer data and vastly increase your retention rates. The most difficult sale you can make is to a new customer. It’s also likely going to be the least profitable initially – minus your marketing costs, the possibility of paying for things such as a referral fee or doing a really good deal to get them to sign. These customers are also unreliable, most likely to cancel, and likely to expect a flawless customer journey.

Do I Have Your Retention?

The answer to selling in times like these is simple – your CRM. If you can maintain a strong retention rate from your customers, then you won’t ever have to worry if new enquires dry up slightly. Make sure you keep track of when customers have finance expiring, warranty expiring, services due, and target them with a simple text message, a more formal email or letter, maybe even follow up with a phone call. By doing this, you’re maintaining that customer relationship, and you’re hopefully reminding these people before they start thinking about competitors.

Year on year, you can keep adding to your CRM, and if your retention and customer care is the best it possibly can be, you’ll grow into a very successful business. Always ask yourself if a customer is unhappy – how much would it cost me to replace this customer? If this customer buys a car every three years, has his servicing and MOT done with your dealership, you could be losing thousands of pounds in income. It’s easy to think, another customer will walk in to replace them, but who knows if they will be as loyal, have their servicing done with you or maybe at their mate’s garage.

It’s worth doing what you can, within reason, to persuade a customer to stay. If they’re unhappy with the condition their car was returned in after a service, give them a free valet, and leave them a nice present in the car as well when they come to pick it up. By being memorable and caring about your customers, you can build the perfect sales machine that you’re guaranteed to keep selling to year after year.

For information on Click Dealer’s services please contact the Clickers either via help@clickdealer.co.uk or 01782 478 220.


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