Put your customers at ease and sell more

Like it or not, according to reports, many people compare taking their car in for service to going to the dentist for a root canal—so you’re up against a very high level of anxiety at best. Managing your customer’s anxiety is going to determine whether or not you’re going to gain their trust and keep them as customers. So I’m going to teach you how to stress your customers out and make them run away. Psych. Seriously, when it comes to service, the sale and retention are based almost entirely on trust so it’s up to your Service Advisors and Service Managers to create that feeling from the start.

What’s the number one thing we consistently do that creates anxiety in our customers?

We make them wait.

Most customers walk around a Service Drive lost, worried about losing their number in line, searching for someone to help. So by the time they get to you, they have decision fatigue and anxiety.

We have a system in our Service Manager University called Service Drive Judo—The idea of Judo being that you’re using their momentum against them, you’re keeping it going. The one thing I know about selling anything, or customer experience is, the less resistance in the system the more customers are going to come back, and the more money they’re going to spend. Nothing raises your average per customer in any industry more than a good system.

Service Drive Judo:

  1. Control the flow of customers coming to your Service Drive—have someone there to help the customer the minute they arrive so they don’t have to wander.
  2. Have one more advisor than you think you need so they’re always ready to assist.
  3. When you hire a new advisor, tell him his job is to build relationships with the walk-ins so they’re not ignored or waiting.
  4. Get your team to read our books and explain that their job is collecting customers.

If you guide the customer in their decision making, you’re in control. You’re conditioning the customer and building trust in the process. In our industry, we have the luxury of selling customers services they really need. So if you’re doing it right, it works and works smoothly. People want to take care of their cars. If you get your service drive judo in place then it becomes a positive cycle.

The main takeaway is, don’t make your customers decide—decide for them. Give them a plan, give them direction, take control and sales will naturally fall out of the other end.

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