Everybody loves to receive praise, and nobody likes to receive criticism. The owners of used car dealerships are sure to receive both, however—and often in highly public forums. Indeed, today’s dealers have to be prepared to deal with the good, the bad, and the ugly of online review sites, which can include Facebook, Google, and Yelp. The feedback you receive on these sites can sometimes comfort and it can sometimes hurt—and in both cases, it’s important to respond strategically.
In this post, we’ll show you what not to do—some common ways in which used car dealers get reviews wrong.
What Not to Do with Your Online Reviews
1. Ignore them.
Like it or not, your buyers are almost sure to Google your dealership before they actually venture down to the showroom—and the reviews they see can go a long way toward shaping their assessment of your business. As such, you can’t afford to be ignorant about the reviews you’re getting. Make sure you monitor your online reviews and have a general awareness of what people are saying about your brand.
2. Lashing out in anger.
It can definitely be maddening to read negative reviews—especially when you find the specific allegations to be unreasonable or untrue. With that said, flying off the handle and yelling at customers in a public forum isn’t going to help. It will only deepen the damage to your dealership’s reputation. Always take some time to cool down before you respond to bad reviews.
3. Trying to get them removed.
Some business owners think their bad reviews are so libelous that they can have them taken down by Google—but that happens roughly 0.0000000001 percent of the time. Your buyers have the freedom to express themselves, and while you may not like what they’re saying, it’s frankly a waste of time trying to get unsavory reviews taken down.
4. Overlooking opportunities for customer service.
When your buyers present real, meaningful criticisms, that’s an opportunity for you to show them some real customer service. Calmly apologize for the problem and ask how you can make things right. Don’t throw away these chances to flex your customer service skills!
5. Overlooking opportunities for gratitude.
Finally, when you get positive feedback from happy customers, take a minute to say thank you! This is another way to show customer service, and to highlight the fact that you really listen to your customers. Bottom line: A simple thank-you can actually improve your dealership’s image dramatically!
Respond Properly to Online Reviews
Your dealership can’t stop online reviews from coming. What you can do is control your response to those reviews.
We encourage you to take some time to think about how you handle feedback, and how it fits into your marketing plans more broadly—and we’d love to help you fine-tune your strategy. Reach out to the dealership marketing experts at Get My Auto and let’s talk more about how to effectively brand your business.