For Dealership Service Satisfaction, Free Wi-Fi and Internet are Critical but Hard-To-Find Amenities
Toyota Ranks Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Vehicle Service among Non-Premium Brands; Mercedes-Benz Ranks Highest among Premium Brands for a Second Consecutive Year
MEXICO CITY: 23 Sept. 2016 — Digital amenities, such as Wi-Fi accessibility, computers with internet access and digital tablets/video games, are yet to be commonplace in dealership waiting rooms, even though they are the most frequently used amenities when available and lead to higher satisfaction scores when offered, according to the J.D. Power 2016 Mexico Customer Service Index (CSI) Study,SM released today.
The Mexico CSI Study, now in its second year, is a comprehensive analysis of service experiences among owners of 1- to 3-year-old vehicles. The study explores customer satisfaction with their servicing dealer by examining five measures (listed in order of importance): service quality (25%); service initiation (24%); service advisor (20%); vehicle pick-up (16%); and service facility (16%). Satisfaction is calculated on a 1,000-point scale.
The study finds that while only 30% of dealers offer wireless internet access, it’s the second-most frequently used amenity by customers when available, following complimentary snacks and beverages. Overall satisfaction among customers who were offered free Wi-Fi is 70 points higher than among those who were not offered this amenity. While computers with internet access are among the least offered amenities at 17%, overall satisfaction is 77 points higher when they are offered. By contrast, among traditional amenities offered, complimentary snacks and beverages generate only a 45-point increase in satisfaction and newspapers and magazines lift satisfaction by just 34 points.
“We see in other countries where we conduct the CSI Study that the digital amenities offered in Mexico are low in comparison,” said Gerardo Gomez, senior director and country manager at J.D. Power de México. “Customers often wait at dealerships for long periods while their vehicle is being serviced, which provides dealers a big opportunity to make a positive impression. It’s critical to understand exactly what customers want and expect and to make sure perks like digital amenities are working properly. ”
Toyota ranks highest in overall satisfaction among non-premium brands, with a score of 857. Toyota is followed by Nissan (850); Jeep and Mitsubishi in a tie (844); and Honda and Mazda in a tie (843).
Mercedes-Benz ranks highest among premium brands, with a score of 920. Audi ranks second with a score of 908.
Key Study Findings
- Making the pick-up process more efficient is a key area for improvement. As expected, the longer customers have to wait, the lower their level of satisfaction tends to be. The study finds that23% of customers waited more than 20 minutes to pick up their vehicle after service was completed. Overall satisfaction among these customers averages 742, compared with 878 among those who waited 5 or fewer minutes.
- Customers visit non-dealer service facilities more often as their vehicle ages. Dealer service satisfaction and loyalty are highest within the first year of purchasing a vehicle. With each subsequent year of ownership, loyalty and satisfaction decline. While just 13% have been to a non-dealer in the first year of ownership, this rate of dealer defection doubles to 26% in the second year. By the third year of ownership, 33% of owners have been to a non-dealer for service.
“Auto dealers have enjoyed robust new-vehicle market conditions in Mexico, so they’ve been able to reap the benefits of a steady stream of first- and second-year owners,” said Gomez. “While the sales forecast in Mexico remains strong, dealers must not become complacent. There is a direct link between overall service satisfaction and all measures of intended loyalty and advocacy—both of which will pay off when sales growth eventually slows. Further, dealers have significant profit potential the longer they can retain their customers in service, even beyond the warranty period.”
- Maintenance packages create higher satisfaction. Approximately two-thirds of customers indicate their vehicle included a prepaid or complimentary maintenance package with the purchase. This is more common among customers who own a premium brand vehicle (87%) than among non-premium customers (67%). Customers with complimentary maintenance packages are more satisfied overall, with an average index score of 857, compared with 844 for those with prepaid maintenance packages and 795 without a maintenance package.
The 2016 Mexico Customer Service Index Study is based on the evaluations of more than 5,907 interviews with new-vehicle owners in Mexico approximately 12 to 36 months after purchase. The study was fielded from March through July 2016.
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