The service drive can be just as important to dealer profitability as used and new vehicles rolling over the curb. With that thought in mind, Kelley Blue Book recently launched a new tool to help keep those service bays busy.
Kelley Blue Book recently unveiled its new Auto Repair Guide experience, addressing what the company says are needs of both the consumer and automotive industry for a principal source of “trustworthy” recommendations related to servicing and maintaining a vehicle.
The all-new experience on KBB.com can guide consumers through three primary service categories: recalls, maintenance and repairs. KBB.com is also including the ability to allow consumers to schedule service online through the Featured Auto Repair Center, a pilot with its sister company, Xtime.
To point consumers in the right direction, the Auto Repair Guide on KBB.com can help vehicle owners answer their top service and repair questions such as:
— What do I need to get done?
— When should I get it done?
— Where should I get it done?
— How much should it cost?
To help consumers answer those questions and potentially steer those individuals to dealerships, Kelley Blue Book’s all-new Auto Repair Guide includes:
• Information on recalls, maintenance and repair work
• A Fair Repair Range estimator — similar to the Kelley Blue Book Price Advisor tool — to guide consumers on service and repair price ranges, based on average dealer service pricing
• The ability to schedule service appointments with local dealerships directly on KBB.com through the Featured Auto Repair Center
Kelley Blue Book can enable both consumers and dealers to remain on the same page for pricing and now, in the service lanes with its integration with Xtime, an integrated software platform for retail automotive service departments.
“Car shoppers have long trusted Kelley Blue Book to provide them with vehicle values, new-car information and more,” Cox Automotive vice president Jim Roche said in a news release. “With this new auto repair feature on KBB.com, now they can rely on Kelley Blue Book throughout the ownership experience for guidance on service and repair costs, all while experiencing the same trust and transparency they’ve come to expect from the brand.”
According to the Cox Automotive Service Industry Study 2018, consumers have negative perceptions about getting their vehicle serviced at dealerships, citing unreasonable total cost, overcharging and labor or parts charges among top reasons for not using their dealership service department. In reality, that same study showed common maintenance and services provided by dealerships are on par from a pricing standpoint with independent offerings.
Kelley Blue Book’s new Auto Repair Guide also can make service appointment scheduling easier for both consumers and dealers. Owners can see the Fair Repair Range, select a service provider and book service without leaving the site. Meanwhile, the Featured Auto Repair Center can connect dealers with engaged car owners, increasing consumer trust and confidence by validating their service pricing within the Kelley Blue Book Fair Repair Range.
“The complexities of how to maintain and repair a vehicle, as well as understanding the associated costs, are a major pain point for most consumers,” said Tully Williams, fixed operations director of The Niello Company in Sacramento, Calif.
“Not only has our dealership increased service cost transparency and communication with our customers, but they also have an increased sense of trust from knowing they are being fairly charged for every service visit,” Williams went on to say.