Aftersales experience influences loyalty

According to new research, the automotive aftersales experience has a direct impact on the proportion of customers who return to the same manufacturer brand.

The research carried out by Motoring.co.uk, found that if franchised dealers win in the service business, they are much more likely to win the loyalty of the customer.

According to the research, over 50% of consumers would purchase aftersales products from the dealer that sold them their car, whilst 32% of respondents would opt for an independent dealer. It is evident that the majority of consumers opt for the relative safety of the franchised dealer and the research shows that the likelihood of the customer buying from the same brand again is lessened if they don’t have their car serviced at the franchised dealer, further validating the theory that the dealer is important in the customer’s car buying process.

Motoring.co.uk also researched its consumer’s buying habits to understand the value of a dealer having their own brand. The research found that of those that bought a new car previously, a third stated that the dealer was moderately important to them, whereas 70% of consumers felt the manufacturer brand was important, or very important.

Of the consumers who had bought a used car previously, the dealer becomes increasingly more important in their buying decisions. The research found an additional four per cent of consumers considered the dealer an important factor when buying a used car compared to a new car.

Terry Hogan, managing director at Motoring.co.uk commented, ‘The manufacturer brand is the clear winner in terms of the initial choice, but the role of the dealer should not be underestimated.

‘Our research validates the theory that the dealer is important in the customer’s car buying process. Dealers with strong brand values and a clear message can support their manufacturers, whilst those that deliver a lesser experience will dilute the OEM brand values for a customer.

‘Manufacturers should embrace dealers with strong brands. If the dealer is delivering a great user experience in both sales and aftersales events, it can only help the brand to sell more cars in the long term. Customer experience is still the key to brand loyalty.’

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