Counting Stars: The Connection Between Customer Confidence, Service and Reviews

In today’s world, social sharing and digital connectivity allow for dealerships to be defined by a one, two, three, four or five-star rating. These ratings are extremely powerful, and just one bad customer review can send a dealer’s reputation and profitability into burnout.

Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, summarizes this phenomenon well: “Make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. Make customers unhappy on the internet, they can each tell 6,000.”

Now that’s a staggering impact. In fact, research shows that 91% of people read reviews, and more than 80 percent trust them as much as they would a personal recommendation. Now more than ever, dealerships must protect their online reputation.

So, what’s the best way to count more stars? Simple: deliver exceptional customer service to every customer, at every opportunity.

At Preferred Warranties, Inc. (PWI), our vehicle service contracts (VSC) provide consumers with protection plans so they can drive away with confidence. VSCs not only provide reassurance to car buyers, but they also are a direct path to a satisfied and happy customer.

Manufacturers have made significant improvements to quality and reliability over the last decade, however, vehicles do break down, they are made up of thousands of components and failures do occur even with added dealer reconditioning expenses prior to sale and delivery.  

Here’s an analogy I like to use when someone asks me what the value of the VSC is: I compare it to health insurance for your car or truck. We all want health insurance for our families to help cover unforeseen medical expenses. VSCs are no different; they help protect the customer and dealer when unforeseen mechanical problems occur post-sale.

There are a variety of VSCs available to dealers and customers which can be customized based on the financial needs and driving habits of the customer. It is critical that dealers probe and ask appropriate questions to correctly align customer needs with the correct coverage level and best-fitting VSC.

VSCs can be included in the financing of the vehicle which limits the financial impact on a customer. For an extra $10 to $30 per month (dependent on coverage level), customers can have peace of mind knowing that mechanical failures will be covered by the VSC and limit the inconvenience of a costly out of pocket repair. In addition to the repair work being completed and depending on the coverage level of the VSC, customers will also be covered with rental car reimbursement, roadside assistance and towing.

There are a plethora of additional benefits to offering VSCs besides increasing ratings. But intuitive and successful dealers have made the connection between VSCs, customer service, and impact of reviews.

To learn more about VSCs and how they can support dealerships as they strive to keep their customers satisfied and their ratings high, visit PWI’s website at www.warrantys.com.

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