Reviews are online currency. 78% of new car intenders and 71% of used car intenders say they will use dealer reviews as a part of their research process. 90% of recent purchasers who used dealer reviews said they were helpful.
The secret about reviews is that a review isn’t really about the person who leaves it. That person has had an experience you can no longer change. A review is about the potential customers who will read them and make a decision about whether or not they will visit your dealership.
In the automotive world, reviews abound. You can be reviewed on your service staff, your dealership, individual vehicles and experiences. On top of that, the make and model will have its own reviews. Consumers rely on reviews every day, but even more so with what is usually the second-largest purchase after one’s home.
At each step of their journey, consumers will have different questions that help them decide on which vehicle to purchase:
“What is the best vehicle in the market for me?”
“Where is the best place to buy it?”
“Who is going to give me the best price?”
Reviews help to answer these questions.
The consumer begins their buying journey at the research phase. According to a recent study, car buyers spend 60% of their time searching online; additionally, 78% of people use third-party sites when starting their research.
You may already have a good reputation in your area through word of mouth, so it can be hard to see the impact of a good online reputation. But having a positive image online is now just as important since people are travelling further to purchase vehicles. Online reviews leave a lasting impression, and potential customers may base their decision to visit you –or not – on others’ experiences. If a customer has any doubt about getting the best possible service, they may take their business elsewhere.
How to respond to reviews
Good or bad, it’s important to acknowledge, respond to and engage with the feedback. This could be as simple as thanking them for leaving a review or for visiting your dealership. Let your reviews speak for you. If handled right, they can be the reason the next person walks onto your lot.
For more information on how to respond to negative reviews, click here.
autoTRADER.ca began integrating Google Reviews on April 5, 2018.
Subscribe to the Carology Insights to get the latest articles and information sent straight to your inbox.