The other day as I struggled to get my car off the highway while it silently broke down, I thought about how I had been planning to take it in to a mechanic for a while but just never found the time. I knew I needed new tires badly. I also knew from the last time I changed the oil the undercarriage was filthy with dirt and oil which may have been a leak or may just be from years of use and lack of cleaning. There just always seemed to be something more important to be done so I never got it looked at until after it was too late.
If you have ever broken down, you know the awful feelings that ensue. Coupled with these was the knowledge that I might have avoided the whole situation with some more preventive maintenance. While it turns out this wasn’t the case – it ended up being the fuel pump which would not likely have been caught ahead of time – it got me thinking about preventive maintenance and how you hear about it but don’t often listen. What if I had been incentivized to take action rather than just having the thought in the back of my mind? How many of your potential customers are just like me?
We often concentrate on how to help our customers improve vehicle sales and attract customers through that gateway but we don’t realize parts and service can also be an effective gateway to more customers. Are you maximizing this potential? Studies have shown that the coupons sections of websites are one of the most popular destinations for visitors. By having strong compelling coupons for your Parts and Service Departments, you could capture these visitors. Many of these could be visiting your website for this exact reason; not everyone that hits your site is looking to buy a new vehicle.
Of course, websites are not the only place you can reach out to people. Consider including offers in any newsletters or emails you might send out. And there are always radio and tv advertisements. The point being to give people a reason to not only think about getting maintenance done but to give them that extra push to do it right now.
This time of year can be very hard on vehicles. With the increased temperatures and vacations or road-trips, cars may be stressed more than they ever are on a normal basis. My car is a perfect example of this. Normally, I don’t drive it more than going to work and back but this weekend I was returning from vacation and was approaching the two hour mark of highway driving. Take this opportunity to not only increase customers to your dealership but also help prevent those in your community from getting that terrible sinking feeling as their car coasts to the side of the road.