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Oct 05, 2022, 08:47 ET
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AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 5, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — A survey of U.S. car owners, commissioned by fleet management experts Dealerware, found auto dealerships have a clear opportunity to win a share of the $25 billion U.S. car rental market1 that is primarily served by national rental chains.
To learn how existing dealership fleet programs meet customer mobility needs, and which on-demand rental offerings dealership customers say they value the most, download the full report at: https://www.dealerware.com/research/mobility-offering-preferences/.
The survey, completed by J.D. Power, showed that dealers have competitive advantages in customer service, fleet management, facilities and proximity to local rental customers.
Matt Carpenter, Dealerware CEO: “Daily, weekly and monthly access to vehicles on demand is becoming a real market need for consumers rethinking their personal mobility needs. Auto retailers and manufacturers are well equipped to win this market together by scaling connected fleets and delivering elevated customer experiences.”
Key takeaway: Fleet experience helps dealers win customers
Dealerships have over the last several years adopted mobile contracting and digital fleet management tools that make it simple, convenient and fast for customers to use dealership courtesy fleet vehicles. In turn, these investments have increased customer satisfaction with dealership experiences.
The business impact of improved dealership experiences is undeniable. A great customer service experience was the most common factor in customers’ decision to return to a dealership, cited by 71% of survey respondents.
The study showed that providing alternate mobility options in the form of courtesy, rental or shuttle vehicles is a key piece of a great experience, and is a determining factor for dealerships’ ability to win business and build customer loyalty:
Dealership mobility programs will also aid the rollout of new offerings, including on-demand access to electric vehicles. Introducing customers to EVs through dealership mobility programs helps dealerships keep customers “in the brand,” while giving the EV-curious a chance to test battery range and vehicle capability before considering longer term commitments.
More than half of consumers surveyed said they would choose an EV over an internal combustion vehicle as a courtesy vehicle, if given the choice.
Key takeaway: Rental is on the rise, dealerships are winning customers
Survey results show clear demand among car owners for flexible (daily/weekly/monthly) access to other vehicles. More than half of survey respondents said they were likely to seek a rental from a dealership.
The top factors influencing consumers’ choice of rental provider are:
Dealerships with fleet management experience already offer high quality vehicles and simple booking processes, and more than 60% of customers live within 10 miles of their preferred dealership.
Dealerships that already offer rentals may be more likely to see repeat business than traditional rental providers. 86% of customers who rented from dealerships in the past say they would do so again, compared to just 50% for those who rented from an off-airport location of a national rental provider.
Carpenter: “Dealerships have the facilities, vehicles, staff and customer service experience to win trust and a significant share of this market.”
Dealerware is modern fleet management for the modern automotive retailer. The Dealerware connected car platform elevates the service experience for dealerships, dealer groups and OEMs. By automating cost recovery, improving efficiencies, and elevating the customer experience, Dealerware allows automotive retailers to lower the cost and complexity associated with the management of courtesy vehicles, retail rental, and subscription programs. Launched in 2016, Dealerware today manages tens of thousands of vehicles for hundreds of dealerships in North America, including the top 10 public dealer groups, across 28 OEM brands. For more information, please visit Dealerware.com.
1 Statista, 2022. “Car Rentals, United States.”
SOURCE Dealerware, LLC.
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