Posted On
July 12, 2017

59% of Car Buyers Choose a Dealership Based on Online Reputation

59% of Car Buyers Choose a Dealership Based on Online Reputation 1

If you ever wonder if auto dealerships have a problem with online reputation management, just read this article headline from The Atlantic:

The Least-Trusted Jobs in America: Congress Members and Car Salespeople

There’s a lot that can go wrong in the eyes of a customer who’s making such a major purchase. But there’s a lot that has go right, so why aren’t auto professionals letting customers do the online marketing for them?

Despite all the technology around us, people still talk to people, so word of mouth still plays a role in the success and reputation of a dealer. It’s fair to say that if you had a bad experience somewhere, you’re going to tell your friends, family, neighbors, butcher, priest, or anyone who’s willing to listen.

Online reviews makes the world a much smaller place, so you only have to go as far as your smartphone to find out what Judy from the West Side thinks about the XYZ Family of Dealerships.

As you’re well aware, most car buyers will do extensive research online about the vehicle that they want.

By the time they walk into your showroom, they already know all the engine specs, how many airbags there are, whether or not there’s Bluetooth for their phone, and how much they should expect to pay. The test drive and financing options are almost a formality.

That level of scrutiny is no different for consumers when they’re choosing who to do business with.

SalesFuel conducted a survey and found that 59% of auto shoppers said that dealership reputation was the most important factor when choosing a dealership:

59% of Car Buyers Choose a Dealership Based on Online Reputation 2

You put a lot into enhancing the customer experience and the perfect compliment to that is nurturing your online reputation.

After providing great service, the next step you need to take is simply asking them for a review. In fact, studies show that 70% of customers will leave a review when asked.

You can encourage customers to share their positive experience on your Google My Business / Google Maps profile, popular review sites like Yelp, or dealer-specific sites like DealerRater. By doing so, you’re letting them do your marketing for you.

Want to Save Time? Automate, Monitor, and Respond

Automation is the best way for auto dealerships to manage their online reputation because it’s important to ask for a review right away.

With an automated online reputation management software solution like RepCheckup, your car shoppers can receive a text message and email soon after their purchase that asks them to rate their experience.

You’ve done a great job, so there’s nothing to worry about – but it’s still important to monitor your reviews because, no matter what, you can’t please all of the people all of the time. When you get a negative review, it’s best to respond quickly and professionally so that it won’t influence potential customers.

RepCheckup sends out alerts when you get a negative review and allows you to easily manage all of your reviews from one dashboard.

Lastly, don’t forget to promote your good reviews! You can use them on your website or incorporate them into marketing collateral in your showroom.

The nation might believe that car salespeople are untrustworthy, but there’s nothing stopping you from completely dispelling that myth in your own community with positive ratings and reviews.

Sign up for a free trial of RepCheckup today.

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