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For those potential customers seeking to find a car dealership to do business with, there are many factors to consider. However, it seems that we all prefer to deal with companies that are reputable and that provide us with a sense of trustworthiness. Either way, it goes far beyond that. That said, the following is a closer look at three things customers want from a car dealership and three things they don’t.

by Anthony Giagnacovo

The Three T’s

While people are driven to do business with car dealerships for an array of reasons, there are some things that customers seem to be seeking much more than others. What are your customers looking for? One of the top responses to this question is the 3 T’s: time, transparency, and technology.


Your customers want to know that their time is being used as efficiently as possible and not being wasted. Many customers have already had several negative customer service experiences with other companies and thus, are looking for a company that provides an outstanding experience.


It’s likely that many customers have already dealt with car dealerships that have mislead them and otherwise withheld vital information. It’s essential that you fully answer any questions your customers may have, as well as fully disclose any information about the process or other information pertinent to their circumstances.


As far as technology is concerned, it’s always important to put the customer in the driver’s seat. For instance, in communication, it’s best to ask if the customer prefers to text, call, or even meet in person. Finding out what level of technology a customer is comfortable interacting with could be the key to securing appointments. For example, if you know a customer does not use the internet often, you may opt to use snail mail, rather than emailing them with promotions and other important materials.

On another note, there are also plenty of things people do not wish to deal with when working with a car dealership. A few common items are as follows:

Sales-y Fluff

Your customers expect to hear that you have the best prices and deals in town, but don’t expect them to believe you. Using language that’s misleading and overly sales-y is a great way to lose valuable customers.

Lack of Value

In this age, you have to provide something above and beyond to secure a sale. Does your dealership offer free car washes, provide free windshield wipers, provide air for tires, or tire rotations? Whatever services you provide, let the customer know so that they can understand the benefits of shopping with your dealership, in particular.

Generic Dealerships

In the age of branding, every business needs to have a personality. What do you offer that other brands don’t? Do you cater to single moms or large families? Do you give back to the local community? Do you provide teens with their starter cars and help them get on the road? No matter what your brand stands for, make sure your goals are clear and that your customers can take full advantage of the benefits.

Overall, there are plenty of things that customers want out of a car dealership, as well as plenty of things they would rather not deal with. While these lists include a few of the most common elements on each side of the fence, they’re no substitute for talking to your customers directly and building a rapport. Ultimately, it’s important to approach each customer as an individual and do your best to cater to their unique set of circumstances.

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