“It’s five times more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to keep an existing customer.”
This tried-and-true stat is a workhorse for industry leaders pushing their employees to increase customer retention. And for good reason. Long-term loyalty from your customers means steady revenue, efficient use of your service team, and more than likely good customer referrals.
However, knowing customer retention is important and actually doing something to increase it are two very different things.
Discover how DriveSure can make your service department the only one customers depend on for maintenance, tires, and repairs.
Survey Says: DriveSure Keeps Customers Coming Back
Understanding how DriveSure benefits impact customer loyalty (and retention) is a critical aspect of our business, which is why we started running a post-service survey of our dealership clients’ customers this year, looking for insight into their overall service experience – and more specifically DriveSure’s impact on that and future visits. Now that we have several months’ worth of responses, we’re ready to share.
How does it work? With three easy questions, we gain a snapshot of the customer perspective, and discover what role DriveSure plays in their decision-making process. The question that tells us the most about DriveSure’s impact on customer loyalty is:
Does the inclusion of DriveSure make it more likely you will return to (Dealership Name) for your next oil change service and have your benefits automatically renewed?
And the takeaway? A whopping 84% of dealership service customers surveyed stated that DriveSure benefits make them more likely to return to their dealership for their next oil change service.
Talk about a loyalty bump. And that number only gets more impressive when you consider the fact that so many customers (even the loyal ones) are prone to going elsewhere for their service needs given the right opportunity.
Losing Customers Along the Journey
At this point you might be asking yourself, “But why would seemingly loyal customers consider a different service department or repair shop?”
Data from our 2020 Dealership Service Retention Report shows that customers are apt to look elsewhere for their service needs for a variety of reasons, even among those customers deemed most loyal to a dealership.
And as we explored in our Customer Journey Guide, there are a few critical events along the service customer journey where service departments really hit a roadblock in retention:
- The First Appointment: Getting customers back for their first service appointment sets you up for success along the entire journey. Unfortunately, between unclear information and customer delays, the first appointment can be tricky to nail down.
- Expiration of Factory-Paid Maintenance: Once customers know they have to start paying out of pocket for services, loyalty can hit a sharp decline.
- Expiration of Factory Warranty: Warranty = Loyalty. But once the warranty expires? It can be much more difficult to keep your customers (even the loyal ones) coming back.
- Tire Replacement: According to our study, less than a third of dealership survey customers get their tires from the dealership. Talk about a (revenue) leak.
- Unplanned Repairs: Even the most loyal customers may seek help from another service provider when their car unexpectedly breaks down on the side of the road.
Why Are Customers More Likely to Come Back with DriveSure?
With so many opportunities for defection, the customer journey can start to feel a little more like a minefield.
What’s a service manager to do?
The answer: partner with DriveSure.
The reasons why a customer will or won’t return to your dealership for service can vary widely, but based on our 2020 research study one of the leading factors is the quality of the customer service – only ranking below quality of work and price.
Now, assuming you’ve hired the best of the best to work in your service department, and you know that competing on a price alone is a losing battle, customer service (i.e. the customer experience you provide) quickly becomes your lynchpin to loyalty and retention.
Customer experience – and the strategy behind it – has taken hold of the majority of industries, guiding how brands interact with customers and the kind of service they strive to achieve. This trend can be acutely noted within the automotive industry, as service departments add amenities ranging from the simple (free coffee) to the more advanced (pick-up and drop-off). But what actually works? And what will keep your customers coming back to your dealership time and again?
According to dealership service customers, many of amenities they care about most also happen to be the very same benefits included in DriveSure.
By providing the benefits that customers truly care about, we empower dealerships to level-up the customer experience – delighting customers and setting the dealership apart from the competition.
DriveSure benefits include:
- Road Hazard Tire Protection: Keeping your customers on the road and protecting them in case of a tire blowout.
- Dealer Loyal Roadside Assistance: Bringing your customers directly to your dealership for any unplanned maintenance and repairs.
- Emergency Alternate Transportation: Providing a loaner or rideshare service should your customer find themselves without their car for any length of time.
- Personalized Customer Engagement: Making your customers feel like more than just another dollar sign with messaging and communications that make sense for them.
Dealerships provide these DriveSure benefits with qualifying maintenance services – like an oil change. Customers then get to enjoy them at no additional charge for the length of their dealer-recommended service interval. When the benefits expire and their next recommended service is due, they return to the dealership for quality service and renewed benefits. How exactly do customers receive these benefits? DriveSure offers renewable services, which means as long as your customers continue to come in for their regularly scheduled maintenance (whether it’s a tire rotation or an oil change) they will continue to receive and be protected by these benefits.
In other words, DriveSure helps you add even more value to your service offerings, while also providing an effective incentive that keeps customers coming back again and again.
“If we didn’t have DriveSure, we would have to chase after a lot of business. Our retention numbers certainly wouldn’t be where we want them to be. I honestly don’t know if there is anything else out there that would bring our customers back like DriveSure does.” – JOHN AULICINO PARTS & SERVICES DIRECTOR STERLING MCCALL NISSAN
When it comes down to it, increasing customer retention is about creating such a great customer experience that no other dealership even has room to compare. When you can deliver the kind of services and amenities that make your customers feel valued even after they leave the service bay, you create a customer for life.
Ready to rev up your retention engine? Book a free consultation call with our team today to learn more about DriveSure, how it could work in your dealership, and an estimate of your ROI.
Keep Customers Coming Back
Learn how DriveSure can help your dealership become the only one your customers depend on for maintenance, tires, and repairs. We’ll discuss what it looks like to implement DriveSure and what level of ROI you could expect.