With local searches like "car dealerships near me" growing every month, being the best dealer in your local area matters more than ever. But how can you make sure your dealership is the most popular?
Below are a few things that you can do to demonstrate that your dealership goes the extra mile...
Make the most of your dealerships reviews
In an increasingly transparent marketplace, reviews can tell customers whether you’re honest and trustworthy enough for them to consider visiting your dealership.
Utilising dealer review sites, such as Judge Service or Reevoo, is a good place to begin collecting star ratings that can grow your reputation. You should also respond to reviews on Google and social media!
Treat your website as your ‘digital forecourt’
You need to have a website that looks amazing, functions well and is easy to navigate for even the least tech-savvy of customers.
On top of that, your used car stock needs to be up to date - there are few things more irritating to customers than becoming invested in a listing only to find that they’ve been sold!
Listings with thorough descriptions and technical specifications, quality photos and ideally videos will give customers everything they need.
Remember: a good website experience sets you up for a good in-dealership experience.
Build your reputation using social media
It is important to use your social media presence wisely. Whilst you should be generating and posting content on a daily basis, you should try to ensure that quality wins over quantity.
Spamming your followers with sales posts and over-using hashtags is a huge turn off and will only do the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve, i.e., encourage customers to visit you by demonstrating your expertise whilst building an approachable and friendly ‘face’ for your dealership.
Also, remember to: Resolve any negative online comments quickly and fairly Whether you were in the wrong or not, acknowledge the feedback and offer an apology - be gracious enough to admit if you have made a fault!
Invest in your sales staff
We’ve written previously about the best ways to empower your sales team - and it’s not a surprise that, to be the best dealership around, your employees continual professional development should be prioritised. Developing their knowledge will encourage them to remain engaged and enthusiastic about your new and used models, which influences the experience that they give to your customers.
A sales executive who can read their customers body language is an underrated quality, as this can indicate the right time to start ‘talking numbers’ - which can make or break a customer's impression of you. Also ensure that you make the time to go through any small print with the customer to reassure them that there aren't any hidden nasties.
Buying a car isn’t something that most people do very often, so make it memorable for your customers by rewarding them with small treats such as flowers, balloons or a card.
Make your dealership as inviting as possible
The majority of customers walk into dealerships with preconceptions about the type of experience they may be about to have and the sales staff they will have to deal with. As manufacturers have realised, the look and feel of a dealership or showroom can have a dramatic effect on customer’s perceptions.
It’s not all about expensive redecorations and refits either - small changes can make all the difference. There is a lot of waiting around when finalising the details of a sale or having your car serviced, so providing basic things such as free hot drinks, wifi, magazines, toys for the kids and even clean toilets are inexpensive gestures that contribute to an all-round positive experience.
Consider these factors for your dealership to create some extra added value for your customers - it could be the thing that keeps bringing them back to your business in the future, influences what they tell their friends about, or gets you to review that makes you more popular than your competition!