Why Do Loyal Automotive Customers Leave?

 
 Picture: Juhasz Imre via Pexels.com

Picture: Juhasz Imre via Pexels.com

It’s a common piece of wisdom that acquiring new customers costs more than retaining existing ones. This is why it’s a good strategy for an automotive business to focus on keeping its existing customers happy rather than focusing too much on acquiring new ones.

Having said that, it is still possible for even the most loyal of customers to switch to another automotive business to get their vehicles serviced and to source their spare parts and accessories from.

Why does this happen? Why are loyal customers still willing to take the risk of trusting other businesses instead of the one they’ve invested a lot of trust with already?

Let’s find out.

Price promotions

No matter how loyal a customer may be to your automotive business, the fact is that they are people with limited funds. With this in mind, they will always prioritize businesses who can offer the right amount of value to fit their individual budgets.

While they might normally be able to afford the products and services offered by your business, if there was a price promotion being offered by your competitors that matched your customer’s needs, there’s a good chance they’ll switch over to them instead.

Whether as a one-off occasion or a permanent switch, that really depends on the individual customer.

Availability

Something as simple as better availability of products and services can also be a factor in this situation.

Customers these days want to be attended to immediately, wanting their products and services on-demand. This means that having to wait or even make appointments ahead of time could cause frustration in customers needing help and could drive them to look elsewhere, if say, your automotive business was too busy and had to put customers on a waiting list.

Sometimes, even your business’ hours of operations could also be a factor. For example, some people would like the option to bring their cars in earlier in the morning before they go to work, or even late at night on weekends if need be.

Loyal as they may be to your business, if their personal schedules are such that require a business to open at hours when yours do not, then this could drive them to look elsewhere.

Changes in quality

The thing about your loyal customers is that they’ve been with your business long enough to notice when the quality you provide may have dropped. A short-term customer may not be able to tell the difference as easily, but long-term customers will notice when the workmanship is not as good as before, or if your prices grow too much.

When they start to notice this and it goes beyond what they are comfortable with, this will encourage them to seek alternatives.

Perceived improvements

These loyal customers of yours, having seen a reduction in the quality you provide, might perceive your competitors to be able to provide much better quality than you can.

This perception could be influenced by your competitors price promotions as mentioned above, and also other marketing efforts such as advertising, word-of-mouth, and more.

Desire for Novelty

At the end of the day, times change, and so do customer’s needs and tastes. Your automotive business needs to keep up with this, otherwise customers will also seek to find newer, better businesses that can offer much more than what you’ve been offering all this while. This desire for novelty can also be seen as a customer’s desire to grow along with your business, to spend their money at a business that is constantly growing and seeking to be the best in its field.

So while it is true that existing customers cost less to maintain than acquiring new ones, an automotive business and its automotive customer service professionals who represent it towards customers, all need to be aware that there are still reasons why a loyal customer may switch to your competitors.

With these factors in mind, businesses like yours will be able to reduce the attrition rate, or the rate in which existing customers switch over to competitors.