Web Strategies to Increase Service Department Profits

When sales are down, other profit centers need to pick up the slack, and the service department is the first place most dealers turn to enhance their bottom line. What many dealers don’t do, however, is a good job of marketing their service department to help drive business there. And that is especially true when it comes to marketing the service department online.

That topic will be the focal point of Bob McCann’s presentation, titled “Web Strategies to Increase Service Department Profits, a key session on the Service Department track of the 2010 Marine Dealer Conference & Expo (scheduled for Nov. 14-17 in Orlando, Fla.), McCann, who delivered an eye-opening presentation at last year’s MDCE, will once again use real-world examples to demonstrate multiple methods that dealers can use to more successfully market their service departments online.

The first thing McCann, of ARI/Channel Blade, wants you to know is that if your service department hasn’t entered the digital age, you are leaving dollars on the table. In this session, attendees will learn online best practices they can immediately implement, including how to create a strong service department web page, how to create landing pages to drive additional traffic and how to tie in offline promotions to further promote your service department online. He will also share advice on how to post promotions and specials on service; schedule follow-ups through proper lead management and contact us forms; and track and analyze visitors to keep them coming back.

“Dealers need to get organized when it comes to their service departments,” McCann explains. “Don’t just count on a winning reputation to bring customers back. Dealers should schedule follow-up appointments and track what’s actually going on with your customers.”

To learn more about “Web Strategies to Increase Service Department Profits” make plans to attend the 2010 Marine Dealer Conference & Expo, to be held in Orlando, Fla., Nov. 14-17. With three concurrent educational tracks and more than 20 individual educational sessions, this event has been designed to help dealers return to the growth phase they knew prior to the economic downturn.

The “Web Strategies to Increase Service Department Profits” session is part of the Service Department track. It will be preceded by sessions focused on the successful service advisor and solving your most pressing service problems. It will be followed by sessions dedicated TO operational excellence and financial management for service managers, and more.

The Sales & Marketing track will be held concurrently and includes topics such as how to make more money by discounting less and charging more; high-impact, low-cost marketing tactics; the keys to succeeding as a 24/7 marine dealer; converting online leads into sales profits; immediate results using search engine marketing; and closing sales in a difficult economy.

While the Sales & Marketing track is perfect for sales managers and marketing managers and the service track will help strengthen any service manager or advisor, the newest, most exciting news for the 2010 MDCE is the addition of a third track, geared specifically toward dealer principals, titled Powering Profits. In this track, the educational topics will cover such pressing issues as pay plans, (re)building your culture, how to adopt best practices in your dealership, fact-driven dealer management and of course, myriad best practices to go with them. The event will also feature a general session and two keynote sessions, as well.

“We’ve covered all the bases with the education this year, making quality content, specific to service managers, sales managers, marketing managers and dealership principals alike, available in an unprecedented format,” explains Matt Gruhn, publisher of Boating Industry magazine, which partners with the Marine Retailers Association of America to produce the MDCE. “This will, without question, be the best line-up of education this event has ever produced.”

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