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Van dealers' 'unhealthy focus' on price damaging customer service levels

NextGear Capital’s sales director Nigel Warrington

Van dealers have been accused of having an ‘unhealthy focus’ on price that is damaging the quality of stock and customer service standards.

Nigel Warrington (pictured), sales director at NextGear Capital, said: “It seems that all too often LCV dealers focus their promotional activity on price as the main lever that establishes a sale.

“However, this risks underestimating the impact of service.

“This is especially true for used LCV buyers, many of whom are small or medium sized (SME) businesses and who commonly value a dealer’s expertise in vehicle and finance selection.” 

Over the past three years, the UKCSI report, which is published by the Institute of Customer Service, has been able to demonstrate a strong, and consistent link between customer satisfaction, sales growth and market share.

Organisations with the highest satisfaction have outperformed their competitors.

High customer satisfaction scores drive higher loyalty, trust and likelihood of recommendation to family and friends. This analysis includes the motor industry and is applicable to dealers and vendors.

“LCV buyers are often particularly reliant upon their van as a core work tool," said Warrington.

"They are also commonly part of a local work community of supporting trades.

“Creating a long-term customer by going the extra step will inevitably lead to referrals. Such leads arrive already understanding that a premium service is a central part of the dealer’s offer, not just price.

“In this situation, dealers can take the time to buy the right stock on demand.

“At every level delivering a better buyer experience has the potential to deliver a higher value sale at lower cost. Get it right and this can become a virtuous circle.” 

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