It’s a surreal scene when we travel around town and all over the country to visit our dealership partners. Some of the biggest and most successful dealerships in the country, which normally have hundreds of vehicles in stock, have empty lots. They do their best to hide that visual by putting used car inventory spread out in a line diagonally by the road. Most dealers have put a lot of effort into buying as much of that used inventory as they can while they are stuck in limbo, waiting on new vehicles to arrive from the manufacturers. Even with the potential for new vehicle inventory issues to stretch into the following year, there is a solution. That solution is already at your dealership, ready to go and ready to rake in huge profits.
What is that solution? Your service department. Ok, so you probably had an idea that’s where we were going with this. And we aren’t surprised. It is a $350 billion industry. You know how important it is. After all, service accounts for 53% of dealerships’ gross profit on average, and a customer who services from your dealership is three times more likely to purchase a vehicle from you.
But now that demand has gone way up on quality vehicles, and so have the prices. You’ve seen that in the gross profits on car sales. But people are keeping their vehicles longer as a result. The average vehicle on the road is 11 years old. That number continues to climb with inventory shortages. As a result, lots of those vehicles will need repairs — in fact, one-third of those vehicles will need repairs in the next year.
So how do you take full advantage of the glut of used cars needing serviced? At DOM360, we have been focusing on service strategies and solutions for the better part of the last 15 years. Filling service bays and keeping them filled is nothing new to us.
It starts with targeting the right people at the right time. The first people we want to target are your customers — the customers who already know you and already bought a car from you. Yes, your first-party data. Target those lists. Target people who have bought a car but never came back for service. Maybe people who are due for their 30k mileage service. The lists are almost endless on who you can target with the right message at the right time. This is something that most agencies aren’t doing. Has your agency even asked for DMS access? Chances are that the answer is no. Make sure you don’t lose this opportunity.
Let’s not stop at only targeting first-party data. We serve ads to potential customers by analyzing their behavior and combining it with location data. If a person is researching parts and service and they drive by your dealership or your competition, we will target that person with the right messaging. The targeting is immediate and on point. We get in front of that potential customer while they are more likely to make a service decision. We can use your dealership’s differentiators, like technology, expertise, experience, customer service, even warranties and recalls. Make your dealership top-of-mind when service is needed on that person’s vehicle.
Once a customer has seen your ad and clicked on it to schedule service or to find out more, you just got past the biggest challenge. They took action! Don’t let it go to waste by having a poor landing page. You don’t want it to be out of date or confusing. Nor do you want them to go to a page that is irrelevant or cumbersome to navigate. That’s why DOM360 has created a series of searchable, SEO-packed, service landing page packages for many brands. They are built first and foremost to turn visits into scheduled appointments. With a clean, modern look that is easy to navigate, our pages provide a trustworthy way to help fill your service bays.
This entire cross-channel approach is meant to engage current customers and attract new ones to your service department. We track incremental repair orders throughout the process. We lift your RO numbers much more than a lot of other approaches, including direct mail. Our first-party approach alone will generally generate an average of 287.4% return on investment. We think those numbers are something anyone would be pleased with.
Now is the time to make sure you are getting the most out of your service department. DOM360 can ensure every opportunity is maximized. Are you ready to start seeing your service department grow to levels you’ve been wanting? Our experts are ready to work with you to find the plan and strategy that is right for your dealership.