Wholesale warehouse club Costco has more than 90 million members across the country who enjoy steep discounts and savings on a wide range of products and services -- including cars. If there’s a Costco in your local area, you might have noticed that your potential customers are flocking to Costco Auto, an opt-in auto buying program that also saves members 15 percent on auto parts, services, and accessories at participating stores.
While it might be tough to compete with Costco Auto on parts and accessories prices, you can double down on your service offerings to provide the same savings with more personalized attention. Here’s how to outperform Costco and get your customers back into your dealership for vehicle repairs and maintenance:
1. Create a Loyalty Program to Match Costco Discounts
Costco Auto is constantly offering new monthly specials on their services. Keep an eye on their latest deals and offer a price match or similar special for customers who enroll in your dealership loyalty program. Then, advertise the offer to your existing email subscribers and social media followers. As a bonus, a formalized loyalty program builds a strong base of opt-in customers who want to keep hearing from your dealership.
2. Advertise New Technology-Driven Cost Savings
Believe it or not, there are dealership-specific cost savings opportunities that people do not know about, well beyond parts and service discounts. DealerPolicy’s auto insurance app can be used by dealerships to provide customers with in-store, on-the-spot insurance quotes so customers can save money instantly - freeing up some funds for those new tires they’ve been eyeing.
3. Offer Extended Seasonal Hours for Winter Repairs and Maintenance
As drivers gear up for winter weather, they may head to Costco Auto to have winter tires installed to improve driving conditions. The problem is, Costco Auto is often overbooked for these appointments and customers end up on a waitlist that can be up to a month out. Consider extending your service hours in November and December and let your customers know that your service department can swap out their tires quickly, no waitlist required.
As VP of Sales, Michael Kenton is responsible for driving sales and business development for DealerPolicy, with a focus on growing the company’s dealership footprint. Prior to joining DealerPolicy, Michael was a member of senior management at Enterprise Holdings, leading 5 brands within one of the company’s largest markets. He has a 15-year track record of senior level sales and operations experience within the automotive industry.