There’s one question you can ask as a shop owner that will benefit both your shop and your customer. These few words will translate into higher customer satisfaction rates and an increase in work on each vehicle without seeming pushy or high pressure. That phrase is: “Is there anything your car is doing that you haven’t thought to mention?”
Two things that have synergy are the customer’s desire to have their car in the shop as few times as possible and the need for billable hours at your shop. Ask any shop owner what they sell and they will usually tell you they sell customer service. If that’s the case, then why not sell more of the needed repair and maintenance work?
According to the Car Care Council, for every $1 a customer spends in repair and maintenance, there is $7 in work that needs to be performed on the vehicle. In a lot of cases, somewhere in the sales process, the shops put a higher value on the customer’s money than their time.
Other than value-conscious customers, our prime customers value their time over their money. So, how can you bridge that gap at your shop? When that one simple question is asked of your customer during the drop-off process, it can be the source of a lot of additional work. Ask it right near the end of the write-up process – then wait for them to speak! You’d be surprised at how much additional work will be requested as a result of that question.
In most cases, a customer will only come in when a noise or other concern has gotten bad enough to cause them to come to your shop. Remember, time is the most important thing, and life is pretty busy for most people. So they wait until it’s critical or intolerable. It’s not that they don’t want to have other things looked at, it’s because the primary concern is what’s gotten them to bring the car to you and in a lot of cases, the other items just aren’t top-of-mind.