FRIKINtech did its first deep-dive into a data comparison of closed service repair orders and historical sales to find 19.1% of customers in the service drive bought that car from that same dealership. That article can be found here and on DealerRefresh.
Why is this number so low?
It could be seasonal. As this is the first time we did a study like this, we will need to run it quarterly to determine if there are seasonal differences. This could be a summer thing.
It could be economic. Inflation is the highest it has been since the 1970s, and gas prices are also historically high. The perception that franchised dealership service drives are more expensive may be inspiring people to take their car to an independent shop.
It could be the lack of new vehicles. For nearly two years, new car inventory levels have been low. Dealers have been stocking used cars, and that means selling a lot of off-brand vehicles their service departments are not fully equipped to maintain. If a Toyota store is selling Chevys, it is logical the Chevy buyer is servicing that vehicle with the Chevy dealership.
My biased perspective on what dealers should do.
Capitalize on this situation! Build a loyal customer base out of the service drive for future business. By providing a better experience, the customer will be more inclined to give your sales department a shot when it comes time to get out of that vehicle.
FRIKINtech’s SERVICEiQ solution is another option that does not require getting service advisors to smile more. It is an automated solution that does not require sales data to give customers an equity “check-up” every time they get service done. Depending on the vehicle’s age, mileage, and your desire to get that car into your inventory, invites to see how their equity affects the payments on every car you offer is sent automatically via text and email. When the customer says “I’m interested,” a lead is fired into your CRM for your sales team to work.
We built SERVICEiQ to not interfere with your sales process and generate leads you probably wouldn’t have seen before.