In times of low sales the priority should be to retain customers and increase workshop activity. Our experience working with dealerships has shown that the implementation of better business processes can help in times of decreased vehicle sales.
Let’s analyze the case of a dealership that implemented new Sales and Aftersales strategies to prevent customers from defecting to the competition.
What did Sales do?
Sales staff as advisors. New vehicles need maintenance services that are covered by the warranty. But once the warranty expires, the salesperson must create a bond between the customer and the workshop by suggesting preventive maintenance services, offering tips to take care of the vehicle, etc., which will help create a relationship with customers.
Leverage your CRM. A good CRM lets managers monitor the sales process, see the service history of each customer, learn customer preferences, priorities, and interests, etc. With this strategic data, sales staff can offer a more personalized service, increase the probability of closing sales and build a closer relationship with customers.
What did Aftersales do?
Differentiated services for customers. All customers need to service their vehicles and there are many workshops that can accommodate them. Dealerships that want to capture new customers and prevent existing ones from leaving need to offer differentiated services to stand out from the competition. For example, a good workshop scheduling tool allows customers to book, reschedule or cancel appointments on their mobile devices or computers. This way, scheduling becomes simpler not only for the dealership, but also for customers.
Reduce delays. An open Repair Order means a customer does not have their vehicle. This is why the Service Manager must ensure that all jobs are completed on time. And if a delay occurs, the reasons for the delay must be clear. A good dealer management system allows the Service Manager to record:
- The time technicians spend on each job and other activities (breaks, etc.)
- Delays and improductive times, and their causes
- Productivity level of each technician
With this information, action plans can be designed and put in motion in order to improve workshop performance.