Mazda will be among one of the first manufacturers in the UK to offer customers an online service booking system on their dealer websites.
The feature is incorporated into the re-launched dealer websites that went live yesterday (2nd September) and will allow customers to book cars in for servicing, MOT, repair work – or to have a new set of tyres fitted.
“Research shows that more than 80 per cent of customers want to book their car in to a dealer online, so that they can do it at their convenience. So that’s what we’re giving them. It will be a feature across all dealer websites,” explained Mazda UK Aftersales Director David Wilson-Green.
“It’s all about building loyalty through customer convenience.”
The websites are templated by Mazda UK but are unique to each dealer. This approach allows Mazda UK to centrally upload details of national campaigns so they go live nationwide at the same time, leaving dealers free to enter stock and local offers onto their site.
While some other manufacturers offer online booking systems, Mazda’s dealers upload their own available time slots giving them much greater control over their workshops.
In the near future, dealers will also have the option to offer customers a new online tyre package. Customers can key in their registration number and all available tyre options for their car from most major tyre brands are automatically listed.
“Mazda dealers can supply tyres at very competitive prices and given that tyres are often the first thing that drivers go elsewhere to buy, it is essential we promote our offering to make customers aware,” said Wilson-Green adding that the way the new websites work should put Mazda dealers high on internet searches for tyres.
Another optional element of the new service is ‘live chat’ designed to speed up the response times to customer queries. “The automotive industry is notoriously slow in response times on the internet – some dealers don’t respond at all.
“We’re focussed on quicker response times and are working on how to categorise issues to make sure customers get the right response,” said Wilson-Green.
Wilson-Green concluded: “We need to give our customers a richer multimedia environment which includes online and interactive tools, whilst giving the option to use their preferred method of communication. Mazda will continue to invest in online resource to make sure we give everyone the choice that suits their needs.”