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Derrick Woolfson

Derrick Woolfson Business Development

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Top Reasons You Should Have Service Pricing Online

We have all been there - that is trying to get a repair estimate, but are unable to find the pricing online!  And good luck calling the Service Center! The same age old tactic of “the best thing to do is just to come in” is still the main go-to phrase in selling services. The problem with this mentality is that for every dealer that is afraid of pricing is the dealer (Service Center) who puts pricing online. Of course, they make sure (in most instances) to disclose that the special pricing is based on a particular vehicle.

Here are some top reasons that you should offer service menus online:

  • Not showing prices at all online can cause for not only a high bounce rate but fewer customers! Customers have been educated and have several resources at their fingertips.  If it is a customer that has purchased from you  - and there was a proper sales to service handoff - the customer will most likely understand the value in using an OEM certified technician. Not to mention, because s/he has had good experiences they are likely to return regardless if the service is more expensive.

  • Customers want to know the value s/he is receiving. That said, it is a best practice to show the competitors pricing on the website. This way the customer can see the value that they are receiving; or why your shop is more expensive. In most cases, your oil change is actually less than the big box stores such as pep boys and Midas.

  • The word transparency is overused. I get that. But at the same time, customers do want to know what an estimate repair cost is whether it is on the phone or on the website. Apps like Repair Pal & Open Bay are already doing this! Now I understand that when it comes to more tedious repairs that the customer will need to *understand* the costs associated with it.

  • Showing pricing online actually makes your coupons more effective. If you get a coupon with “10% off any repair,” but you do not know what the cost is how likely are you going to use the coupon? Probably not. When is the last time you checked your click & print rate on dealer website coupons?

Dealers wonder why we lose so many deals to Jiffy Lube, etc. - I get it - but it comes down to the fact that they aren't afraid to show pricing. Bottom line - we cause the heartache when it comes to pricing, and it is not worth the frustration it ensues. Instead, let’s be competitive, but realistic and get pricing online!

How do you handle service pricing? Do you have success without having a service menu online? If so, what do you use online?

 

 

John Silva

We have a high percentage of customers that have prepaid maintenance contracts.  We've actually gotten questions from customers trying to make appointments on-line and are wondering why they are being charged for maintenance when they have a contract for the service.  What are best practices under that scenario?

Derrick Woolfson

@John - that is an *excellent* question! And props for all the pre-paid maintenance contracts. That certainly helps with retention. Here is my thought on this one. The best thing your dealer can do (for future customers) is having the sales consultant or F&I Manager - whoever is selling the product - really explain the "maintenance contract." Noting that it keeps up with the OEM schedule. But that there are other repairs/services a vehicle will need.  Now, when you receive a call - just like we do in our BDC - I would offer the customer that their package is "comprehensive," and covers "X, Y, Z," however - there is additional service that your vehicle may need. Offering them (if possible) a coupon, or even a call with the service manager to review their service agreement. Many - if not all - are usually a two-year contract and cover oil changes and maintenance intervals. Namely, do your best to explain the value that their package already *gave* them! What does your service contract offer? Do you have different levels of maintenance plans? 

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