3 Min ReadMarch 7, 2024

Market Your Trained Technicians to Earn Service Business

Market Your Trained Technicians to Earn Service Business.

Despite swirling economic head winds, fixed operations remains a bright spot for franchised dealers. It’s the steady stalwart relied upon as a profit center during the variables that impact sales. And franchised service centers have distinct advantages that independent shops can’t beat.

In a recent survey, CDK asked over 2,000 service shoppers where they turn most often for vehicle repairs and maintenance. Nearly half, 43%, picked a dealership as their first choice.

Why exactly did they choose a dealership over competitors? Two of the key reasons were knowledgeable service staff (47%) and certified parts (38%).

Only franchised dealers can promise factory-trained technicians and manufacturer parts. Dealerships that promote these advantages and deliver an exceptional customer experience will be on the road to more service business.

Accelerate Marketing Activities

Competitive advantages deserve to be marketed far and wide. Focus on your website, lead-generating activities, and customer communications.

First, make sure you have a webpage dedicated to your Service department that’s easily found on your homepage. On the Service page, emphasize your factory-trained technicians and OEM-supplied parts. Make it personal by highlighting employees. Imagine a Master Service Technician who’s been with you for years. Hang their photo alongside their qualifications and include a few fun facts.

Second, plug your technicians and expertise in all lead-generating emails and social media posts. Consider including a customer quote from a CSI survey that speaks to your specialized vehicle knowledge and/or specific OEM parts. In this age of online reviews and social influence, shoppers appreciate hearing from other customers.

Focus on the EV Advantage

As EVs become more commonplace, the advantages of dealership service centers will be even more pronounced. Automation, electrification and telematics are changing the skills technicians need. Dealerships can afford to hire and train technicians skilled in technical repairs. Emphasize the advanced technology in today’s cars and illustrate why your highly trained technicians are another reason to come to a dealership over the independent or chain shops.

Tackle the Customer Experience

Despite the advantages of training and technology, dealerships still need to consider the overall customer experience to develop loyal customers. CDK found that while shoppers appreciate specialized service they want it to be easier to do business with dealerships. What does that look like? Think of communication and convenience.

Customer updates on service progress are a particular area that can be improved. Technology, like mobile updates, make it easier to keep customers informed and can help improve the experience.

Experience convenience is another area of focus. Conveniences range from providing online scheduling tools to loaner cars to pickups and drop-offs. Logistics, like location, will affect what you can offer. A dealership downtown, for example, likely won’t have space for a fleet of loaner vehicles but can contract with rideshare companies to get customers where they need to go.

With the market normalizing and affordability concerns pushing customers to hold onto older vehicles longer, fixed operations continues to be a reliable profit center. Franchise service centers have the technical expertise and certified parts that independents just can’t compete against. Push these advantages along with an exceptional customer experience to come out on top in a crowded field.

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CDK Global
By CDK Global
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