A loyal customer base is the foundation of any successful business, and it’s no different in the automotive industry. With people needing regular maintenance on their vehicles, repeat clients will likely make up the bulk of your revenue. It’s essential to make pointed efforts toward earning their trust and boosting automotive service retention.
Loyalty, however, is about more than just low prices. Customers will look at a variety of shop aspects to judge their experience and how likely they are to return, from your personnel to the quality of their work.
To build loyalty and long-term retention with clients seeking automotive service, here are five areas to focus on.
Focus on Communication
When clients reach out to your business—be it through phone, email, or social media—you should respond quickly and clearly to their inquiries.
For most people, auto services are scheduled or purchased at need rather than in advance. When customers reach out to your auto shop, your team should be able to address their concerns, provide pricing estimates, and schedule appointments as soon as possible.
To ensure you’re responding quickly, you can designate a team member to field client inquiries. This will ensure that all client outreach is handled efficiently and that no calls or emails fall through the cracks. Additionally, when communicating with clients, make sure your response is clear and concise. Customers need to understand what you’re saying in order to trust your shop.
A website appointment scheduler for your auto shop can also be a powerful tool to give customers more control over their appointment while saving your team time.
Naturally, the best way to build trust with clients is to perform high-quality repairs on their vehicles. If a person purchases an oil change and then leaves the shop with an overflowing sump, then they’ll likely consider other options when they need this service again.
Beyond this, auto shops can utilize a variety of additional approaches that cultivate trust and lead to long-term automotive service retention.
On your website and social media channels, you should utilize pictures and videos that demonstrate your team’s expertise and note any specific individual achievements. For people checking out your shop online, this can help demonstrate your team’s pedigree.
While performing work on client vehicles, taking photos or videos that prove the need for service can also help build trust. When you text them a photo of their dirty cabin air filter, the customer can see for themselves that they’re due to replace their filters. As a result, they won’t feel like you’re trying to squeeze them to purchase extra services they don’t actually need.
Additionally, when billing clients, you’ll want to itemize each expense and take the time to explain every charge. Remember, auto shop language is Greek to most clients, so by taking the time to break down each charge and explain the rationale behind it, you can make sure clients know they’re not being hit with hidden fees.
Provide Quality Service
Arguably the most important way to build client loyalty is to actually solve their issues. No client will be happy if they get their car back and the issue is still there or, even worse, a new issue has popped up.
Because of this, you need to train your staff and implement consistent testing procedures. The most effective auto shops can not only address the issue stated by the client, but they’ll also point out additional issues that should be addressed and, if the client wishes, fix them.
For example, if a person comes in for an oil change, your team should take the time to examine the entire vehicle. From this examination, your team can also point out that a person needs new brakes and a transmission fluid flush.
Recognize your Customers
Another trick to improve automotive service retention is to simply give your clients regular acknowledgment and gratitude. Customers like to be recognized and remembered when returning to a business, and while it’s quite the task to remember every single customer (and their vehicle), there are shorthand ways of accomplishing this.
With a client experience platform like BayIQ, you can create individual profiles for each of your customers. In these profiles, you can store vehicle information and a history of any services performed. This way, when your mechanics encounter return clients, you can greet them accordingly.
Additionally, programs like BayIQ allow you to implement client loyalty programs. With these programs, you can track client spending and dole out rewards or discounts when they book a certain amount of services.
Improve Your Automotive Service Retention with BayIQ
While larger businesses devote entire teams to managing the client experience, smaller businesses like auto shops must figure out how to manage client loyalty while still conducting the day-to-day operations of the shop. For these businesses, it’s often best to rely on software to help improve automotive service retention.
BayIQ, an online platform built specifically for auto shops, can help small businesses manage several key facets of the client experience. With BayIQ, your team can build an optimized auto shop website that allows clients to schedule services online.
Through the online scheduling manager, BayIQ will also take in information about the client and their vehicle. It will use this information to build out individual profiles for each client, allowing you to both track their services and build customer loyalty programs.
Following the completion of a service, BayIQ will also automatically ask clients to leave online reviews, helping to build your business’s reputation and increase its positioning in search engine results.
To win customer loyalty, you need an approach that meets your clients not only in person but also on the web. With BayIQ you can do just that. Schedule a demo today.