Most people hate the car dealer, but American Ford of Billings, Montana, aims to change that.
We all know how it is. Car dealers are loved about as much as lawyers. Every trip to the dealership to buy a new car is an exercise in haggling, wits, and a test of patience so strong, you’d think the church would start you on the fast track to sainthood.
One dealership, though, is taking one large step to make trips to the dealer far more convenient for its customers. American Ford is a dealership located in Glendive, Montana.
It gets cold there. Very cold. It also snows. In fact, in the winter of 2013-2014, they smashed their snowfall record back in March with over 99 inches of the fluffy white stuff. The city has about 5,000 residents, which is understandable with weather like that.
They sell about 40 used and new vehicles per month. How does American Ford do it with so few customers to pool from? Delivery service.
That’s right. In order to overcome the issues of bad weather and a remote location, American Ford will deliver your new vehicle to you via flatbed. They’ll also pick up your current vehicle and tow it in for service – for no extra charge.
“We try to take the distance out of the buying and service equation and go to our customers if we have to,” says Kyle Johnson, the general manager of American Ford.
“We believe that the customers are pretty busy, whether it is farm-related or they are out on their ranches just trying to get their jobs done. The cold really hampers a lot of what they are doing.”
So when there’s a blizzard outside, and your Ford has a problem, you can call the guys at American Ford and they’ll schedule a pickup and delivery of your car or truck for service. They do this year-round, not just in the dead of winter. It’s been a part of the American Ford business model since the store was opened.
To make the job easier, American Ford has a full-time member of staff whose job title is “Traffic Coordinator.” His job, logically, is to coordinate the delivery and pickup traffic of each vehicle, but they don’t have dedicated drivers for this. The regular ol’ dealership staff are the ones responsible for these trips. So if you’re 400 miles away out in Bismarck, North Dakota, and you buy a new F-150 for your operation, your salesperson will be there on the tow truck to greet you, shake your hand, and see you off in your new Ford.
In fact, in December 2013, they did just that. A customer bought a brand new F-250 from Bismarck, and American Ford delivered the vehicle to his house so that the man wouldn’t have to lose a day of ranch work.
To say that their business model is unique would be an understatement, but customers are taking notice and are very appreciative of the effort that American Ford is putting forth for its customers, whether it’s a mild 65 degree summer day, or it’s 40 below in the dead of winter.
“When you provide that kind of customer service, it gets to be expected. It perpetuates itself, and you start doing more and more…. Our motto is, ‘Every customer every time.'”
Take a look at their website and maybe American Ford will be delivering a vehicle to you next.
Featured Image Credit: Automotive News