For customers who rate their experience in the top quartile of satisfaction (929 points and above on a 1,000-point scale), 89 per cent are more likely to return for post-warranty service work, said the report. Similarly, 90 per cent of customers in the top quartile will recommend the service centre to a friend or relative, it added.
Dealers agreed that there indeed has been a drop in their revenue per car. “Car owners are getting only those jobs done which is an absolute must and cannot be postponed. All the non-essential services are being postponed,” said Nikunj Sanghi, owner of Alwar-based JS Four Wheels. As a dealer, it also offers value-added services like car polishing and cleaning. Such functions have taken a hit, he added. Sanghi’s dealership has seen revenue from after sales and service take a 17 per cent year-on-year dip.
John K Paul, managing director at Cochin-based Popular Vehicles and Services agreed with Sanghi. “People are avoiding full services. They are only going for what is bare minimum,” said Paul, pointing out that revenue per car serviced has gone down by 7-10 per cent at his dealership.
“Typically, dealers rely on service work to keep their businesses profitable, especially during a downturn in new-vehicle sales,” said Kaustav Roy, director and country head for India, JD Power. “A drop in average service spend bodes negatively for overall dealer profitability. More than ever, dealers need to focus on delivering excellent service experience to retain customers and encourage loyalty and advocacy.”
It dropped to the lowest in 22 years in August as buyers shelved purchase decision owing to weak sentiment and poor economic growth.