Whether your dealership is brand new to DealerRater or has thousands of reviews and is already highly rated, everyone wants their overall score to be as high as possible. While our experience has shown that having the highest score isn't as important as consistent, large numbers of positive reviews, the two tend to go hand-in-hand. If you're interested in learning more about improving your dealership's overall score, you can find some tips and ideas below.
The dealership's overall score includes all lifetime review scores, with more weight given to recent reviews.
The simple answer to the question of "How do I improve my score" is: Get more good reviews. You can think of this in terms of following these steps:
Provide a great customer experience.
Mention DealerRater and ask for a review from the customer.
Follow up on your request for a review.
Try to resolve any negative reviews and ask the reviewer to update accordingly
Step 1 is up to your dealership, but we can help with the rest. We know that requesting and receiving reviews can be much easier said than done, so below are some ideas and tips for generating a steady stream of positive reviews for your dealership.
Ok, again, this sounds simple, but it really is a critical first step in getting reviews. Our research has shown that reviewers are most often motivated to write reviews because "My salesperson asked me to." When a salesperson mentions DealerRater to a customer during the sale, or even shows off their employee profile to the customer, that customer is much more likely to understand the importance of their review and take the time to write one. DealerRater helps to build trust and familiarity between the customer and salesperson, and leveraging that relationship after the sale to get a good review is just as important as building that trust to bring the customer in the door in the first place.
Getting your staff involved is a very important part of collecting positive reviews and raising your score. It can take a little work to get started, but once positive reviews start rolling in the benefits will become clear, and the process will become routine.
Asking for reviews is definitely important, but having a good follow-up strategy to help remind your customer is also an important piece in collecting consistent positive reviews. Below are some of the strategies top-performing dealers on DealerRater use to collect their reviews.
A simple follow-up email thanking a customer for their business and including a link to your DealerRater page to write a review is a great start to soliciting reviews and makes it easy for the customer to access DealerRater from home to write their review. A brief sentence or two requesting a review, along with a link to your dealership's Write a Review page is a simple and effective way to solicit reviews.
Building on the idea of the email follow-up, we recommend using the LotShot tool, which not only simplifies the process for the reviewer but generates photo content for your profile. LotShot emails have a much higher conversion rate into reviews, generate visual content for your page, and help to build the relationship between the employee and customer.
While it takes a little bit more time, a very effective way to request reviews is as part of personal communication from the salesperson to the customer, after the sale. If your dealership already follows up with a phone call or other personal communication to customers after their experience, this is a great time to remind the customer to submit a review.
ReviewBuilder automates review collection by pulling customer emails directly from your system and contacting them with a request to write a review. Dealerships who use ReviewBuilder see on average a 400% increase in review collection, and 98% of the reviews they receive are positive.
After receiving a negative review, we strongly recommend that you reach out to the reviewer with a private response to ask for more information or establish contact and work with the reviewer. Many customers who leave negative reviews simply want someone to hear their story, and an acknowledgment of their difficulty is often enough to start a new relationship with the customer.
If you are able to come to an understanding with a customer who left a negative review, you should absolutely ask them if they would consider updating their DealerRater review to give you a higher score: a negative review turned into a positive will mean a higher score for your dealership, and is also incredibly valuable content for your DealerRater profile.
If you came here looking for a quick read for improving your dealership's score, then this probably seems like a lot of information to manage. Remember though that the important part is simply finding a strategy to get more reviews. DealerRater reviews are much more often positive than negative, so as long as you and your store are proactive about requesting reviews, your score will absolutely climb along with your number of reviews - of course, if your dealership has already received hundreds or even thousands of reviews over the past two years, then it can take a lot of reviews to change your score, but every positive review is a step in that direction.