Customer Retention
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by
Robert Grant
| 9 December 2019

Superior Service: The Key to Customer Retention

It’s no secret that a superior customer experience will keep customers coming back. A recent study from KPMG stated “In today’s retail environment, the phrase ‘customer is king’ ” has never been more true. When price alone is no longer a differentiator, the customer experience must win out. Superior service, convenience, personalization, speedy delivery, and choice are what drive every sale and secure repeat business. In their survey of retail businesses, KPMG asked what initiatives will be the most significant driver of their company’s revenue growth in the next three years. Customer retention ranked the highest at 52 percent. Customer acquisition and product innovations were next with 45 percent and 30 percent respectively.

Since it can be much more expensive to acquire a new customer instead of retaining an existing customer, your business should set specific goals around customer retention.

When you think about successful retail chains, the thing that sticks out is the consistent service that we can expect — no matter the location. Just like a successful retail chain, you should strive to provide a consistent positive experience every time a customer visits your website, calls the store or personally visits the store.

The Service department can make a lasting impression on your customers. They are typically the last interaction your customers have with your dealership. As you provide a consistent process for your team, the customer experience will change from a process to an organizational mindset. Here are a few suggestions to help you along that path.

Recognize your customers’ repeat business

When they call, email, text or drop in, recognize your customers and have the history from their previous visits ready. Acknowledge their loyalty and you will continue to earn their business. Have the proper tools in place so their information is easily accessible. An efficient DMS and CRM system can help you achieve this.

Provide a Tailored Experience

Customers like options that fit their needs. It’s crucial for you understand your customers and their motivation for reaching out to you. Knowing your personality traits and how they relate to your customers’ personality traits can be very helpful here. If you haven’t administered a personality test recently, have each member of your business take one. This will help you better provide a tailored experience for each customer.

Provide Value-Add Services

Customers expect you to perform the services that were requested. Find ways to go above and beyond the basic services. It’s the little details, like a personalized note from the staff, that make each individual feel special. Videos are becoming increasingly more important to customers, so consider incorporating this into your strategy. Recently, I saw a great, quick walkthrough video from a dealer that highlighted the services provided by their dealership and any suggested additional services. This helped provide a personal touch for their customers.

It is human nature to want to be included in something unique. If you can successfully provide a superior customer experience, your business will continue to be successful — whether it’s up or down.

Robert Grant
Robert Grant

Robert B. Grant has over 18 years of RV, Marine and Powersports industry experience. He got his start managing the parts and service departments at local dealerships in Salt Lake City, UT. He attended the University of Utah where he received a BA in Finance. He has been employed by CDK Global Lightspeed, previously known as ADP Dealer Services, for 17 years and has worked in many different capacities in the company which provides the Lightspeed dealer management software and services for the Marine, RV and Powersports industries. He currently works as a business development engineer.