Industry, Shipper

Why Customer Reviews Are Vital For Growing Your Auto Dealership

by Kacie LaCombe

Think about the last time you visited a business as a first-time customer: how did you hear about it? Was it through word of mouth? Did you see it pop up on Google or Yelp? 

Chances are, you chose to try it after viewing its reviews online or through word-of-mouth from friends or family. A statistic from Podium found that 88% of consumers consult reviews when discovering a new local business, regardless of the industry.

Consumers nowadays rely on online reviews more than ever before, and as a result, businesses should prioritize gathering customer reviews and sharing them online if they want to succeed long-term. Here are the biggest reasons why customer reviews are vital for auto businesses, as well as answers to some of the more frequently asked questions related to them.

Why Does My Auto Business Need Customer Reviews?

Reason 1: Use Reviews to Gain Customer Trust

A study found that 3 out of 5 Americans feel like they are being taken advantage of when they visit car dealerships. There has been a long-running stigma of car dealers acting predatorial against their customers, and because of this, honest car dealers have to work that much harder to earn the trust of car buyers.

Because of this, automotive dealers can greatly benefit from generating positive customer reviews on platforms such as Yelp, Google, Facebook, and more. Having an assortment of positive reviews will help bolster your business’s reputation, and make it easier for future customers to trust your business through the establishment of social proof.

Reason 2: Establish Your Auto Business as a Leader Within the Industry

Auto dealerships are a dime a dozen, so standing out from the crowd can be challenging. Gathering customer reviews is one of the best ways to establish your auto business as a trustworthy leader within the industry. Reputation marketing is a common marketing tactic where you utilize your brand’s reputation in order to increase your sales.

So, you should not only gather reviews on Yelp and Google, but also post customer testimonials on your business’s website – lacking customer reviews on your website can actually have a negative effect on your reputation. 

Reason 3: Get Noticed Easier Online

Not only do customer reviews help your auto business by making it appear more trustworthy, but they also help improve your chances of getting noticed online. If you were to search for businesses on Google, the ones with a higher number of reviews will undoubtedly show up before others within the area – this is because reviews help SEO, or search engine optimization.

Search engines recommend content that others find useful, so if your business possesses a lot of reviews praising it, then it’s more likely that it will be recommended to others searching online.

Reason 4: Generate More Foot Traffic and Leads

Customer reviews are instrumental in acquiring new leads and potential customers, which is vital if you want your business to stay afloat. Just as customer reviews will help your auto dealership to gain more online traffic, it will also help to increase the number of actual customers that step foot in your dealership. Obviously, dealerships need customers in order to make money, and having a great online presence will have a positive impact on your number of leads and customers.

How Do I Get Customer Reviews?

So, now that you know why you need customer reviews, you may be asking how to go about getting them. Well, it’s honestly easier than you might think: just ask!

The most effective way of getting customer reviews is through directly asking customers (usually right after they’ve made a purchase) if they can leave a review online. This can be done at the dealership in-person, or online via email. You can help to incentivize customer reviews by offering some sort of discount or reward, however many customers who have great experiences with your business will likely be happy to leave reviews even without an additional incentive.

Be sure to train your staff to regularly ask customers to leave reviews; it’s very important to get in the habit of asking!

How Many Customer Reviews Do I Need?

Customer reviews are important, but just how many does your business need?

In short, as many as possible. There’s no such thing as “too many reviews,” especially when talking about platforms like Yelp and Google. As previously mentioned, these platforms are more likely to recommend businesses that have the most positive reviews, so if your business has a 4.5 star average rating but only 10 reviews, a business with the same average rating but 100 customer reviews will show up on searches before yours. Because of this, you can never have too many customer reviews.

Now, on your business’s website, it’s a different story. Posting 100 customer testimonials on your website would look very messy; many sites recommend using quotes that are short and to the point, with a minimum of three quotes but no more than six or so. Any more than that would likely be too much for a single webpage.

Level-Up Your Business

If your business really wants to stand out above the competition, then you may want to consider investing in Super Dispatch – an all-in-one platform that packs in both a load board and TMS. A TMS (transportation management system) is software that allows dealerships, brokers, and car auction companies to simplify how they conduct various online tasks like filing reports, updating inventory, and managing nearly all tasks related to online car sales. If this sounds like something that your dealership could use, then consider trying it out for yourself – request a demo today!

Published on March 24, 2023


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