10 Tips To Boost Dealership Online Reputation

Online reputation is crucial for any business, but it's especially important for dealerships. Car buyers are more likely to trust a dealership with a great online reputation, and a poor reputation can lead to lost sales. 

In today's digital age, consumers have access to a wealth of information at their fingertips and they are more likely to research a dealership before visiting it in person. That's why it's essential for dealerships to take the time to build and maintain a stellar dealership online reputation.

Salesperson on computer checking her dealership online reputation

A dealership's online reputation can make or break its ability to attract and retain customers. A positive reputation can lead to increased sales and customer loyalty, while a negative reputation can cause customers to look elsewhere for their next vehicle purchase. 

In this blog post, we'll be discussing the 10 steps that dealerships can take to create and maintain a great online reputation. From creating a strong online presence to managing customer reviews, we'll cover everything you need to know to ensure your dealership has a positive reputation online.

Whether you're just starting out or looking to revamp your existing dealership online reputation strategy, this guide will provide you with the tools and knowledge you need to succeed.

1. Aim to provide quality service to improve dealership online reputation

The first step to building a great dealership online reputation is by providing a fantastic customer experience from start to finish. Make sure that you are making an effort to consistently delight your customers. This means paying attention to every detail, from the moment a customer walks through the door to the moment they drive off in their new car. 

customer shaking hands of salesperson boosting dealership online reputation

2. Send review requests to all of your customers

Next, you want to make sure that your customers are sharing their great experiences on review sites and social media. Remember, a dealership with 500 reviews looks a lot better than a dealership with 5. There’s an easy trick to getting more reviews: just ask.

By sending review requests via text and email to all of your customers, you will make the process of leaving a review easy. All they have to do is click on the link and write a review. It's also important to make it clear that you value their feedback and that you're actively working to improve your dealership online reputation based on their comments.

This can be done by responding to reviews, both positive and negative, and using the insights gained to make changes to your dealership. Review Dingo offers a great way to do this with our award-winning Reviews service.

3. Be on the first page of Google search

75% of users never go past the first page of Google. By taking the steps to rank higher on search, your dealership will get discovered by more car buyers. To increase your dealership’s visibility on search, get more reviews and make sure that your business listings are accurate across the Internet. 

Screenshot of the top 3 dealership positions for Toyota in the Dallas area

It’s estimated that reviews and listings together account for more than 25% of ranking factors. This means that it's essential to have accurate information on sites like Google, Yelp, and Facebook. This includes your dealership's name, address, phone number, and hours of operation.

It's also important to use keywords related to your dealership in your website content, meta tags, and page titles to improve your search engine rankings.

4. Monitor all relevant review sites

Customers are constantly making the decision whether or not they want to buy from your dealership through the hundreds of review sites on the Internet. Bad reviews on one site can lead to customers turning away from your dealership and going to a competitor.

Make sure that you’re keeping track of every review site that you appear on to prevent damage to your reputation. This means regularly checking sites like Yelp, Google, and Facebook for new reviews. It's also important to respond to negative reviews in a timely and professional manner, addressing the customer's concerns and offering solutions to their problem.

This shows that you care about your customers and that you're committed to improving their experience.

5. Engage with all of your customers to improve dealership online reputation

Engaging with your customers is crucial to building and maintaining a positive dealership online reputation. It's important to respond to all reviews, whether they are positive or negative. Responding to a positive review is a great way to show appreciation and build loyalty.

On the other hand, responding to a negative review in the right way can help turn an angry customer into someone who is ready to have a conversation with you or even an advocate of your business based on the way you handled the situation.

dealer on phone improving dealership online reputation through communication

It's important to respond to reviews in a timely manner and to be professional, courteous, and understanding in your responses. Show that you care about the customer's experience and that you are willing to take steps to resolve any issues that they may have had.

When responding to a negative review, it's important to acknowledge the customer's concerns and to apologize for any inconvenience or dissatisfaction that they may have experienced. Offer to make things right and to take steps to prevent similar issues from happening in the future.

Remember, a negative review can be a valuable learning opportunity for your dealership, and by responding in the right way, you can turn a negative experience into a positive one.

Having an omni-channel communications strategy provides numerous benefits to businesses. It allows customers to engage with the brand through multiple channels, such as email, social media, live chat, and phone. This results in a seamless and consistent experience for the customer, as they can switch between channels and still receive the same level of customer service.

An omni-channel strategy can lead to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as higher conversion rates and revenue growth. In today's competitive market, an omni-channel approach is crucial for dealerships looking to differentiate themselves and provide a superior customer experience.

6. Treat negative feedback as an opportunity to improve

Negative reviews can be a tough pill to swallow, but it's important to remember that they can also be an opportunity to improve your customer experience.

For example, if you see a customer complaining about something like a “long wait time”, you might want to explore how you can make your processes more efficient. Use the insights that you get from reviews to better understand what aspects of your dealership customers love and what aspects need to be improved.

One of the best ways to turn a negative review into a positive one is to respond to it in a timely and professional manner. Show the customer that you understand their concerns and that you're taking steps to address them.

This can go a long way in turning an angry customer into someone who is ready to have a conversation with you or even an advocate of your business based on the way you handled the situation.

It's also important to take a step back and look at the bigger picture when it comes to negative reviews. Instead of getting defensive or taking it personally, try to see the review as an opportunity to learn and improve.

For example, if a customer complains about the quality of the service they received, use that feedback to train your staff on how to better handle customer complaints. If a customer complains about the price of your cars, use that feedback to re-evaluate your pricing strategy and see if there are ways to make your cars more affordable without sacrificing quality.

7. Fight slander against your dealership

Occasionally, you may come across a bad review that doesn't seem to be from a legitimate customer or is reviewing the wrong business. In this case, it's important to take action to protect your dealership's reputation. The best way to do this is to put your evidence out there strongly and politely so potential customers know that they’re looking at a fake review. This shows the public that the review doesn’t actually represent your business.

One way to do this is to respond to the review directly, pointing out the inaccuracies or inconsistencies in the review and providing evidence to support your claims. For example, if the reviewer is claiming to have visited your dealership on a day that you were closed, you can provide a screenshot of your social media post or website message that announced the closure.

You can also report fake reviews to the review site or platform where they were posted, as most have policies in place to remove fake or misleading reviews. Be sure to provide all the necessary information and evidence when making the report.

white and red graphic showing fake online reviews

You can also report fake reviews to the review site or platform where they were posted, as most have policies in place to remove fake or misleading reviews. Be sure to provide all the necessary information and evidence when making the report.

8. Make sure that your listing information is accurate

Incorrect business listing information can spread across the internet and cause serious damage to your dealership. Because there are just a few major data aggregators that distribute listing information, a wrong address or phone number can quickly spread all over the internet. This means a lot of confused and angry customers.

To avoid this, it's important to regularly check and update your dealership's listing information on major review sites, directories, and social media platforms. This includes your business name, address, phone number, website, and email address.

Additionally, make sure that your dealership's listing information is consistent across all platforms. Inconsistencies, such as different addresses or phone numbers listed on different sites, can lead to confusion and mistrust among potential customers.

9. Keep track of your competitors

Whether customers are trying to find a new dealership or a new service center, they’re probably going to look up multiple different businesses online. That’s why it’s important to see what customers are saying about your competitors on review sites. If there are areas where your competitors are excelling and where you’re falling short, you can figure out what you can do differently to stay a step ahead.

This can include things like monitoring your competitors' reviews and ratings on major review sites, tracking their social media accounts to see what kind of content and promotions they're sharing, and keeping an eye on their website to see what kind of services and vehicles they're offering.

By understanding what customers like and dislike about your competitors, you can identify opportunities to differentiate your dealership and improve your own online reputation.

10. Stay active on social media

Customers do keep track of what friends and family are saying on mediums like Facebook and Twitter. So make sure that your dealership is posting regularly on social media. Recent news about your dealership, a new offering, a promotion, or sharing one of the great customer reviews you recently received are all great things to share with your social media followers.

laptop and mobile phone showing social media for dealership online reputation

Social media also allows you to engage with customers and potential customers in a more personal and direct way. This can include responding to comments and messages, hosting Q&A sessions, and sharing behind-the-scenes content.

Use an integrated social media software to stay active on your social account, you can build a stronger relationship with customers and potential customers,


In conclusion, building a stellar online reputation for your dealership is essential for your business growth. By following these ten steps, you can lay the foundation for a great dealership online reputation and future business growth. Remember, the first step is to provide quality service and consistently delight your customers.

Make sure that you're sending review requests to all of your customers, and be on the first page of Google search. Monitor all relevant review sites, engage with all of your customers, treat negative feedback as an opportunity to improve, fight slander against your dealership, make sure that your listing information is accurate, keep track of your competitors, and stay active on social media.

Keep in mind that building a great online reputation takes time and effort, but the rewards are well worth it. By consistently providing quality service, engaging with customers, and making improvements based on feedback, you'll be well on your way to building a stellar online reputation for your dealership. By following these tips, you will be able to attract more customers, increase sales, and build a loyal customer base.

Last Updated on March 14, 2023 by Allen

Share Puppy Love