December 8, 2022
How car dealerships win back lost customers
Loyal returning customers can be one of the greatest assets in maximizing your dealership’s profitability and performance. In fact, government statistics indicate that consumers are 76% more likely to buy their next car from the dealership they regularly visit for service on their present car.
These statistics emphasize how repeat business can improve your dealership’s profitability and operations. However, customers who defect can be tough to win back. To help you with this difficult but worthy task, here are some proven tips you can use to win back lost customers to your dealership.
Why customers leave dealerships
When customers stop doing business with your dealership, their exit increases your business’s attrition rate. This metric is the number of customers lost by the end of the quarter divided by the total number of customers you had at the start of the quarter.
The three main reasons why customers leave dealerships are:
Frequently, dissatisfied customers are very problematic because they rarely address their problematic customer experience directly with their dealer. But they will likely talk about their bad dealership customer experience with 9 to 15 other people. Plus, this negative word-of-mouth has the potential to spread through social media and business review websites like Yelp.
How to win them back
Fortunately, most unhappy customers leave because of solvable problems. Considering this fact, you can use these tips to get a second chance to make these defectors loyal customers again.
Lure customers back with incentives
One of the most effective methods of getting repeat business is offering incentives. Since your inactive customers are already familiar with your dealership’s services and products, an enticing discount may be all you need to get them to return.
With the help of automotive CRM software, you can send personalized texts or emails to a specific group of inactive customers. A dealer CRM and marketing software makes this action possible by allowing you to divide your customer base into segments. For example, you could offer a warranty extension to a group of inactive clients with mature or expired warranties.
Advanced marketing services allow you to target owners of your OEM vehicles who’ve received service at an aftermarket location in the last six to 12 months. It also helps you locate inactive customers by searching customer activity in the service center database.
Your dealership’s efforts to win back customers shouldn’t end when they show up for service. Since the advent of online car buying and selling, most customers have elevated customer service expectations that demand the best in your dealership operations and systems. Automating processes can increase your remarketing conversion rate by optimizing your dealership performance CRM.
If your auto dealer CRM is properly optimized, you can track and respond to customer activity anytime or anywhere. It also allows you to:
- Do follow-up alerts
- Provide regular inventory updates concerning price, accessories, optional equipment, and other items.
- Efficiently manage test drive activities by updating the fleet of cars
- Collect digital signatures
- Provide a live dealership customer interaction center to communicate quickly and conveniently with customers
This technology allows you to use omnichannel communications to engage with customers at any point in the service or sale cycle. As a result, you can quickly address any customer concerns along the way.
Focus on the premium defectors
In remarketing, premium defectors are your dealership’s highest-grossing customers over the last two or three years. Identify this customer segment by monitoring long-term repurchase activities and finding the biggest spenders in your customer database.
You can then target premium defectors in your remarketing campaign for special service deals, loyalty rewards programs, service reminders, and other personalized email and social media messages.
Offer time and money-saving benefits
Saving customers time and money never go out of style as an enticement to get repeat business. And in today’s customer-centric business environment, they can be deal makers or breakers. By requiring customers to set up a service appointment by phone or a personal visit, you could be opening a door for your competition.
Use your dealership CRM software to let your customers schedule appointments from anywhere. You can also offer other advantages like:
- Providing alternative transportation in advance
- Offering a vehicle pick-up and return service
- Presenting a complimentary vehicle inspection report
Making your customer remarketing plan work
These practical tips can help you lower your dealership’s attrition rate and reclaim more inactive customers. However, it is critical that you track, report, and review your sales and service metrics. By accessing your dealership’s real-time analytics, dealership performance CRM software makes this task much more manageable. And by retargeting your past and current customers using advanced marketing, you can share promotions and incentives through display and social media ads when they are ready to service their vehicles.