How to Increase Your Service Department Sales

June 30, 2022

Team ACV

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How to Increase Your Service Department Sales

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Your dealership’s maintenance department is full of untapped revenue potential. With the auto industry’s chip shortages and inflation in car prices, customers are holding on to their old cars longer than ever. Because of this, more vehicles need servicing. Especially when you’re buying and selling used cars, you should be connecting customers to your service program.

Service revenue is the key to increasing dealer profitability. It gives your car dealership a reliable source of income when car sales are slow. A strong service program that puts its service customers and their cars first will also inspire sales loyalty when it comes time for them to buy a new car. 

Whether your dealership service department is nonexistent, small, or thriving, there's always room for growth. Put your customer experience first and your repair order sales will follow. Let's explore four initiatives for your automotive business development center (BDC) to develop. These will help expand your services to increase dealership profit, foster customer satisfaction, and inspire dealership loyalty.

Market the Value of Servicing at a Dealership

Many consumers hesitate to service with car dealers. This is because they're believed to be significantly more expensive than other providers. However, the price difference between auto dealers and other auto servicers is less than customers realize. The difference in price stems from the quality of work, professional knowledge, and access to parts sales that auto dealerships can offer. 

Prioritize employing OEM-certified service advisors and stocking genuine parts in your parts department. Marketing strategies that center on these benefits will show customers the value of what they're paying for. When marketing your dealership maintenance department, talk about vehicle longevity, your vehicle-specific expertise, and access to genuine parts. You're selling them long-term dependability, quality, and expertise, not whatever budget fixes the local mechanics have to offer.

Reach More Customers Online

A strong digital presence is crucial to growing your auto dealer services sales. While your dealership may have an online showroom, do you have any information about your auto repair services?

Your service department’s digital presence can be broken into three distinct categories: 

  • Social media: Make sure you have a social media presence wherever your target audience is. Generally, this means at least Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Update them regularly with promotions, marketing, and other engaging content.
  • On-Page: Create a list of your offerings and prices, and set up an online service appointment booking portal to encourage customers to book with you.
  • Reviews: Foster positive online reviews and follow up to direct potential customers to them. This helps customers decide to use your service center.

Focus on boosting each of these aspects individually, then connect them into a holistic digital strategy. After all, if your digital retailing automotive strategy is crucial to selling more cars, then your digital service center strategy should be crucial to increasing that revenue too.

Prioritize Time and Convenience

Customers value convenience and flexibility in a service visit. This is something more commonly attributed to local mechanic shops. Combat this perspective in a few ways. Try offering drop-ins for certain repair orders, setting time expectations for work among your techs, and otherwise prioritizing convenience.

If you show your customers how flexible your service center is, they'll keep coming back long after their warranty expires.

Reward Customer Loyalty

Warranties may encourage short-term loyalty to your service center, but what about when they expire? How can you keep these customers coming back for everything from oil changes to bodywork? Consider creating a VIP loyalty program. 

Loyalty programs inspire customers not only to return for more service contracts, but also to refer their friends. Here are a few ideas of what your incentive program could offer. Be sure and tweak your program to be as unique as your dealership is.

  • Offer a punch card for oil changes or tire rotations
  • Let them earn points towards work or parts
  • Create a referral program where they get a discount for sending new customers to you

Build Loyalty to Increase Sales

Customer Satisfaction builds customer retention, which in turn converts to customer loyalty. Know that customer loyalty is one of the biggest revenue boosters. Plus, customers are more likely to buy their new vehicle from you if you’ve built up trust through the service department. Stocking the best cars for teens can also help you build trust with your customers. Become their go-to car people now, and they'll come to you for anything car-related forever.

When they come to you for their next car, let us help you stock the perfect inventory. We look forward to working with you at ACV Auctions! Start finding great inventory by registering below.