Just about every consumer today is connected to friends, acquaintances, and businesses via social platforms. In fact, it’s nearly impossible to find someone who is completely removed from online resources. With that said, it’s important for businesses, and your dealership specifically, to focus on online feedback from consumers and your response time in getting back to them with answers and solutions. The customer service you provide online is just as important as the customer service you provide in your dealership. Right now, 63% of consumers say they are satisfied with the response times they receive from businesses on social media, but what if your dealership could make even more consumers happy by focusing on responding to every online review?
Consumers look to online feedback and reviews before they make purchases or decide on service, and that means it’s up to you to be in the right place at the right time to respond and offer professional insights. While many of your customers will leave positive reviews, you’ll also have a few negative pieces of feedback along the way, and it’s especially important to respond quickly and positively to these. Studies show customer advocacy decreases by up to 50% when businesses fail to respond to complaints; in fact, advocacy actually increases by 25% when complaints are answered. It benefits your dealership to be present, responsive, and active on the sites where your consumers are spending their time. Not only can you act as a first responder when it comes to answering questions and feedback, but you’ll also gain great insights about potential shoppers.
Whether a review is good, bad, or indifferent, a response from you is always in order. Your customers want to know their review was noticed and read—and they’ll know you’re paying attention when you give them a personalized, thoughtful response. By interacting with those who leave feedback for your dealership, you’re actively showing them you value their feedback.
If you receive a positive review, that’s great news. You can respond by thanking the customer for his or her business and for the feedback. Additionally, take a moment to personalize your response by mentioning the recent service that was received or the purchase that was made, highlighting any further services your dealership can provide.
Negative feedback can be tricky, but it’s still important to respond. Again, thank the customer for the insights being shared, and let him or her know you understand the situation. Be sure you offer a positive solution and a way to contact you personally. Often, you can easily resolve situations and end up with happy customers simply by being empathetic and proactive. Let customers know their business is important to you—and work to offer positive resolutions to every piece of feedback.
Every business receives both negative and positive feedback online. The way you handle the feedback your dealership receives will directly impact the relationships you have with current and future customers, so it’s important to build trust through positive interactions. No one gets 5 stars all the time. In fact, most consumers don’t trust businesses that have ALL 5-star reviews because they view them as less-than-authentic. Consumers are most impacted by reviews that fall between the 4.2 to 4.5 range, so don’t worry too much about a bad review or two. Just be sure to respond appropriately so everyone can see you’re a proactive, service-oriented dealership.
Top Feedback Sites
Be sure to monitor the feedback you receive across top consumer sites like Google, Twitter, Facebook, DealerRater, and Cars.com. On each of these sites, you can search for feedback about your dealership and respond to customer comments, allowing you to maintain your reputation among consumers.
Your consumers are increasingly social—and this isn’t going to change. Information travels by word of mouth across a variety of social sites, and that means you need to be on those sites as well. The more you talk, interact, and respond to consumers, the better chance you have of seeing feedback about your dealership, earning shopper trust, and building a loyal customer base.
Today’s consumers have access to just about every piece of information they need online, and they’re turning to social to research, connect, and share before they buy. They move quickly—and they expect the businesses where they shop to move quickly as well. Make sure your dealership is recognized as responsive, service-oriented, and professional by being where the customers are…exactly when they need you. When you respond quickly with great information, you’ll win over today’s shoppers.
Author: Joey Little
Joey Little serves as Director of Digital and Social Engagement for AutoAlert. An expert in customer experience management, he educates automotive professionals at speaking engagements across the country. With results-driven advice and proven industry knowledge, he assists dealerships in reaching their audiences and increasing business via their social platforms.