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Creating a service plan culture can boost aftersales department

'Service plan' is a banned phrase at Simpsons Skoda in Preston and Colne although the product forms an essential element of the dealership's culture.

For managing director Neil Simpson, the key to their success with the product is its differentiation from all other service plans in the market, hence staff refer to their bespoke scheme by its name - Advantage Gold.

"We view Advantage Gold as an integral part of our business. We talk about sales of the products in the same way and with an identical level of importance as we talk about new and used units sold, labour hours sold, finance and insurance penetration and accessory sales," said Simpson who will share the dealership's success story when he speaks at AM's Aftersales Conference on April 24.

Sponsored by web management agency GForces, the conference takes place at the Hilton Hotel, located in the complex of the newly opened national football training centre St George's Park in Burton on Trent, East Midlands, and incorporates workshop sessions where the focus is very much on tangible ways dealers can boost the bottomline and ultimately profits as soon as they return to their own businesses.

Simpson will highlight the business' service plan success and provide an insight into how his team has embraced the product to both increase profits and ensure customers return to the business past the all-important three-year vehicle age when motorists are more likely to defect to the independent sector.

Like standard service plans, Advantage Gold can be purchased as an upfront payment or paid for by monthly instalments and while it covers routine servicing, Simpson believes its range of additional benefits including a half-price MoT check and service discounts for other non-Skoda vehicles in the household, makes it a much easier sell for the teams.

Tickets are available to dealers and manufacturers, with a limited number of supplier tickets on sale. To book, please contact Nicola Baxter on 01733 468289, email or visit

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