The Mercedes Benz customer experience shines

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Ahrweiler - Town SquareEven though most of us love new cars, the actual experience of visiting the dealership and dealing with a car salesperson can be closely akin to having a tooth drilled at the dentist. The biggest complaints are waiting for someone to help us, sales personnel with little knowledge of their product, and sales people who are pushy and obnoxious.

Pied Piper PSI, a California-based dealership for sales and marketing sent 3524 secret shoppers to various dealerships across the country from July 2010 to June 2011 to evaluate different dealerships and how they treat car shoppers. The results weren’t really surprising, but it does provide us with some interesting information that lends itself to customer service improvement ideas.

Mercedes-Benz came out on top for customer service followed closely by Jaguar, Lexus, and BMW. In the luxury brands, Lincoln scored at the bottom. The lowest customer satisfaction scores were from Suzuki and Mitsubishi.

The lowest customer satisfaction scores weren’t a result of less expensive cars, although it’s much more likely to find a cappuccino machine at the Lexus dealer than at the Hyundai showroom. Shoppers complained about the reduced staff. The fewer salespeople mean more wait time and a deterioration in customer treatment. Car shoppers also reported salespeople rarely mentioned specific features of the car the buyer was interested in; an indication of not knowing their product or being in a rush and not meeting their customers’ needs.

Let’s face it; good salespeople are hard to keep if they’re not making money because of low volume. “Not all brands have struggled during this recession,” states Fran O’Hagen, CEO of Pied Piper, “but reduction in dealership staffing has been common. Over the past year the successful salespeople stop thinking like a salesman, and instead think like an owner of a dealership.

So what can we learn from Mercedes-Benz that is universal to all organizations who want to win customers over with their excellent service and product? The basics of great customer service is to think like an owner because an owner thinks if you provide the best for your customers, they will tell their friends or they will be repeat business in the future. People remember how they were treated, and when you present exceptional customer service and concentrate on the consumer’s needs, your organization becomes a leader in that industry.

photo credit: DomSupra

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Cheryl Hanna
Service Untitled
Cheryl Hanna is a successful real estate sales person in Florida and has used her customer service knowledge and experience to set her apart and gain a competitive edge in a very difficult market. Cheryl has been writing professionally since 1999 and writes for several blogs and online publications

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