If customer retention was ever a buzzword, it is this year! Everyone in the automotive industry is talking about it. But, what are we doing about it? The challenging thing about customer retention in the retail automotive business is the amount of time between purchases and the lack of frequent interaction with the customer during that time. Of course, the answer lies in the service drive, so how are we as an industry thinking about it differently than in years past?
Leaving Money on the Table
Let’s look at retention in terms of customer engagement between vehicle sales. According to research from the National Association of Automotive Dealers, 83% of customers who perform maintenance with the selling dealer are more likely to return to purchase another vehicle. However, the Cox Automotive 2018 Service Industry Study states that dealerships only represent 33% of the share of consumer service visits. Literally, dealerships are getting only a third of the customer’s business for maintenance. Not only are you losing the opportunity to engage with your customer – you’re losing service drive revenue!