Choosing a car isn’t the easiest decision in anyone’s life, and spending that money is never done casually. Anyone that looks to buy a car is likely to spend a long time picking which is going to be better for them and more adapted to their need and budget, so the question deserves to be asked: are online reviews really that important to the auto industry, or are they just a detail in a decision that buyers are unlikely to take based on what they find online? The answer is overwhelmingly directed to the first option.
The internet has been largely beneficial to the auto industry. Indeed, it has made visibility completely different for car owners, buyers and companies who can advertise their products to a wider audience. This visibility comes with a new opportunity for anyone to give their opinions on garages, brands, and cars themselves. But an important counter side to it is that studies have proved online reviews are among the top 3 factors determining the ranking of businesses. They have a direct impact on whether or not customers are going to give their money to a company or a brand: read and trusted by many, the public opinion on something people don’t necessarily know a lot about, such as cars, is essential.
Word of mouth has never been as powerful as it is now that it’s helped by the internet. Anything can make or break a business, and the auto industry has always relied on positive experiences to bring more customers. The “google impact” has been felt and proved times and times over, as potential buyers have a way of not being blind about the business they will spend money on. The internet has given a way for people to tell more than just they close entourage what they think, and with something as versatile and complex as the auto industry, people are being listened to.
According to the website cars.com, only 3 consumers out of ten will say that online reviews don’t matter to them. This means an overwhelming majority of people won’t stop at just the name of the auto business they’re looking for- they will actively look for feedback, something companies cannot underestimate. It has become essential and unavoidable for business owners to manage their company’s online reputation, as advertising becomes review-focused and not strictly about visibility anymore. Customer feedback and how to handle both positive and negative reviews is a skill every business now needs to have, on top of trying to make satisfied customers add on to the positive reviews. A new challenge for workers in the auto industry, and one with high stakes.