The Importance of a Service Walk-Around (WITH Your Customer)
“I know that ding wasn’t there this morning when I came in!” screeched the customer, as he picked up his keys at the cashier window.
Unfortunately, the Service Advisor had no way to prove otherwise since he had not performed a service walk around the customer’s vehicle during the write-up.
And if you think looking for damage is the only good reason to do a walk around, think again. It’s much more.
Here are some additional things you might find by performing this all too important step:
- Obtain the exact mileage on the vehicle
- Provide the customer with menu recommendations – based on exact mileage
- Check for valuables (cell phones, laptops, children, etc)
- Cracks in windshields
- Worn wiper blades
- Battery check (with your customer)
- Inspect under hood and top-off washer fluid (let your customer see)
- Inspect tires worn past the wear bar (a real safety issue)
- Broken or cracked tail or headlight lenses
- Noises or anything obvious
- Upholstery and carpet tears or stains
- Cracked or broken moldings
- Increased rapport with your customer
- Make recommendations - at the vehicle
- Ask for the sale
The customer’s vehicle is, in fact, your greatest selling tool.
And all these things add up to potential profits! In fact, some dealers have created an entirely new profit center out of small dent and body repairs combined with detailing services. Those who don’t can still profit big by utilizing vendors for these and other services.
Consider the above situation. Without a walk around with your customer present, the shop was sure to lose money and a repeat customer. Not to mention getting a low satisfaction score. But with a different process in place, look what happens:
Service Advisor to Customer:
“I notice you have a few door dings. We offer a service that can take care of up to three small dings like this for only $95.00! Would you like us to take care of that while you’re in for service today?”