The FINANCIAL — As part of a key General Motors initiative to enhance the customer experience, more than 3,400 Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac dealerships in the United States will upgrade their retail facilities to meet brand standards, according to General Motores. To date, more than 1,000 dealerships have either completed their upgrades or are under construction.
The facilities image program is part of a larger General Motors initiative called Essential Brand Elements – a cooperative program that rewards dealers who voluntarily meet customer experience standards. The standards consist of a completed facilities upgrade, extensive sales and service training and other customer experience standards.
Retail facility improvements include new exterior entrances with updated signage; a bright, modern showroom featuring a customer greeting station and customer lounges with free Wi-Fi. In some cases, a café or salon is part of the experience.
Steve Rayman, owner of Steve Rayman Chevrolet, in Atlanta, Ga., says that his massive renovation took a 1960’s era facility into the present day, and beyond. Rayman opened the doors on his new dealership on Jan. 1, 2012.
Ken Ross, owner of Team Chevrolet and Cadillac in Vallejo, Calif., says the investment decision made sense. His dealership includes a contemporary customer lounge with Wi-Fi and computer stations; two areas just for the kids and a gymnasium complete with guest showers.
Customers like George Franklin, who purchased a new Chevrolet Corvette, found the experience at the new Team Chevrolet and Cadillac facility to be more comfortable than before.
Contemporary facilities are a key ingredient in providing a superior customer experience and in better satisfying customers’ needs, said Don Johnson, GM vice president of U.S. Sales Operations.
The facility upgrades coincide with one of the best product lineups in the company’s history. GM retail sales – those to individual buyers – were up 18 percent in 2011. By the end of 2012, GM plans to introduce all-new or significantly refreshed vehicles in segments that represent 60 percent of the U.S. retail light vehicle industry.