Marine Industry Certified Dealerships Boast Industry's Highest CSI Scores
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Posted by: Lindsey Johnson
According to the most recent data collected from the National Marine
Manufacturers Association’s Customer Satisfaction Index Program, Marine Industry
Certified Dealerships received higher CSI scores than non-Certified dealers
across the board.
Certified Dealers outperformed their non-Certified counterparts in all
areas deemed most impactful to customer satisfaction: Overall rating of the
boat, engine and dealer; sales reputation; follow up; product knowledge; boat
delivery condition; and boat demo. In most cases, MICD Program participants’
CSI scores were rated at least a full percentage point or more higher than
non-Certified dealers, which frequently represents the difference between a
manufacturer earning an NMMA CSI Award for a particular year or not.
Based on the NMMA CSI Program data, "The gap between satisfied and
non-satisfied dealerships is so great, that it’s almost impossible for a ‘bad’
dealer to recover from a situation in which a customer was dissatisfied,”
explains Steve Pizzolato, founder and CEO of AVALA Marketing Group in St.
Louis, Mo., which collects and evaluates data for the NMMA CSI Program. "These
dealers often lose a customer and repeat sale, and more often than not those
customers seek out another dealer that carries different boat brands.”
NMMA CSI Program is an ongoing measurement of customer satisfaction that’s
tracked from the initial boat purchase through the first 300 days of ownership.
Approximately 50 marine manufacturers participate. The analysis for this presentation
of dealership CSI results was based on comparing current rolling, 12-month data
to previous years’ data.
"It’s clear that based on results from the NMMA CSI data collected
this year, Certified Dealers are better at satisfying customers than
non-Certified dealers,” says Sonja Moseley, MICD Program director. "Maintaining
high CSI scores is important on so many levels; it’s the heart of the entire
program. These findings serve to underscore the fact that participation in the
MICD Program is beneficial to a dealers’ business — both in terms of keeping
customers happy and generating repeat business and increasing sales.”
The foundation on which the MICD Program is built is intended to boost
a dealers’ customer satisfaction. The program’s number-one goal is to keep
customers happy with their experience at the retail level so dealerships
perform better in the marketplace. A core tenet of Certification is to help
dealers benchmark how well they’re taking care of their customers and know what
type of experience customers report having at the dealership. The MICD Program
focuses squarely on all of the most important indicators that impact a
customers’ experience at the dealership, and these are the same areas that,
according to the NMMA CSI Program results, ultimately impact customer
Even in the first step of the program, Certified Dealers maintain and
track sales and service processes to ensure customers are reporting positive
interactions at the dealership; and in areas where customers indicate they are
less satisfied, the MICD Program has processes in place to help dealers easily
and quickly address these areas of concern to ultimately improve satisfaction
and increase sales.
The NMMA CSI Program data sheds light on the fact that satisfied
customers make up the overwhelming majority of a Certified Dealer’s customer
base, and focusing dealership efforts on continuing to keep these satisfied
customers happy is, in the long run, the key to profitability.
"We’ve been tracking this data for 12 years, and one of the biggest
and most significant take-aways from the data is that manufacturers and dealers
get fixated on the dissatisfied metric, when the metric to really focus on is
how to make the vast majority of satisfied customers brand and dealer advocates
that will drive repeat purchases and referrals from the various manufacturers’
products that these dealers carry,” Pizzolato says.
For more information about the MICD Program or to enroll, contact
Sonja Moseley at (763) 333-2424 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marine Industry Certified Dealership Program
Managed by the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas
(MRAA), the Marine Industry Certified Dealership Program (MICD) is dedicated to
improving the customer experience at the retail level. The first step in the Certification
process focuses on establishing a high level of customer satisfaction through
communication, appearance and quality. The second tier of Certification
continues to enhance the customer experience by implementing processes for
overall dealership functionality. At the program’s Five Star level, established
organizational procedures are implemented to ensure smooth operations and happy
customers. To learn more about the MICD Program, visit MRAA.com/certification.