Your customers have secrets – knowing them will make your day start easier and end happier.
Okay, maybe your CUSTOMERS don’t have secrets, but their cars certainly contain all sorts of information that will make your job easier. Knowing as much information about a vehicle before it ever rolls into your shop is important for you to offer quick, concise and professional experiences for your customers.
No matter what method you use to make your appointments – whether it’s a phone call, a text message, an online registration form or even an in-person visit – the real key to a satisfied customer is to get as much information as possible about the vehicle from the customer upfront.
What kind of information is essential? Just think about all the things you could know that would make it easier on every member of your team, from service advisor to technician – heck, even your parts department will thank you for a detailed report.
Are there recommendations for the vehicle? Perhaps the customer had service done previously – did you provide guidance then of repairs that might be needed down the road? Remind the customer that those services didn’t miraculously fix themselves.
Are there any OEM services that are due based on mileage? Recommendations based on the vehicle maintenance schedule will help you be prepared to receive that vehicle when it arrives.
You can easily gather that information when you interact with the customer to schedule the appointment. It’s a matter of asking questions based on the vehicle’s history and mileage as well as the customer’s experiences.
However, it’s not just asking questions – it’s about listening to the answers.
Heck, it’s just talking right? Everyone can do it. Surprisingly – or maybe not – asking the right questions is often one of the most difficult things for a service advisor to do effectively. If you’re trying so hard not to be pushy or negative, too often a customer service interaction will result in an incomplete job ticket.
By gathering as much detail up front, you’ll be able to build a thorough, accurate report for the customer and your employees BEFORE the car even enters your parking lot. Then, once the customer does arrive you’ll be able to manage the check-in process with no hassle and less stress for all of you. If there are additional services requested, it’s easy enough to add them to the ticket.
This helps you be prepared and in control of the day’s flow and keeps you from becoming overwhelmed during the day.
Especially in these times when customer interaction may be distant or even totally remote, handling their concerns at the beginning means less likelihood of problems at the end. That’s a secret you don’t have to keep to yourself.