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Turn Your Customers into Fans


  1. Deliver the expected… As a carwash operator, your business won’t prosper if you’re not putting out consistently clean cars. Obvious as it seems, if you can’t deliver on the basis, then other efforts you make will be wasted. For a carwash, basic customer satisfaction means putting out a clean car. Basic also means some other things, depending on what your wash is all about. A great way to make sure that your service is what it should be is to use a “secret shopper” to experience your wash and provide feedback. You’ll be surprised at what you find. Maybe the instructions in your self serve bays are confusing – you can make them more user-friendly.

  2. Deliver the unexpected – maybe even the undeserved… People love to get unexpected ‘gifts’. Have you ever been unexpectedly upgraded to first class when you had been mentally preparing yourself for the middle seat on an overbooked flight? Nothing better. So take an otherwise boring Tuesday, and make it Red Car Day – red cars wash for free. Or celebrate an offbeat holiday. For instance did you know that this Thursday is National High Five Day? What would happen if you handed out a flyer to your customers on that day, announcing that they are getting a free upgrade in honor of this fun but under-celebrated holiday? Hand out free vacuum tokens to customers who have a question or comment. You get the idea.

  3. Accentuate the Positive, Eliminate the Negative… Take a good look around your wash and see what’s working well and what’s detracting from a positive experience for your customers. Make sure that the physical appearance of the wash is a clear positive – fresh paint, rubbish picked up and good lighting are all musts. Now take that thought to a review of your employees. Do some of them dress in a way that is less than professional? Maybe you need to consider uniforms or at least shirts and hats to give a better appearance.

  4. Welcome Their Complaints… At a dinner recently I was served a Spanish omelette… that it wasn’t. It was an omelette with what seemed to be mushroom spaghetti sauce poured on top. It actually tasted ok, and I ate it, but when I mentioned to the waitress that she might want to let the kitchen know that they were a little off on the recipe, she bristled and said ‘no one else has had a problem with it’. The problem with complaints is that they are hard to make and hard to take. Many customers will avoid the discomfort of making a complaint altogether. So when you do get one, it probably represents the experience of several customers, and you need to pay attention. You need to take it well – the first words a customer should hear when making a complaint is “Thank You”, then fix it if you can. A customer whose complaint is responded to in a constructive way will generate 3 times the revenue of someone who has never had a problem.
© Prowash Australia
Author: Prowash
Date Published: 1 August 2007