Ford is in the midst of a major transformation in terms of how it operates and does business, moving to more of a build-to-order model with less inventory on dealer lots as the automaker splits itself quite literally in half, with Ford Blue handling its ICE side of the business and Model e taking care of EVs. At the same time, Ford CEO Jim Farley also recently revealed that the automaker will place more of a focus on what happens after a customer purchases their new vehicle, too.
“And we’re going to just shift, where the eCommerce platform that we don’t have today so all of our e-customers have a very predictable experience, whether they’re in a dealership or in their bunny slippers, and they’ll have a very simple, transparent, very easy purchase process and we’re going to invest in our marketing model with an emphasis on post-purchase.”
Aside from focusing on improving quality and reducing marketing costs, Ford is also focused on less traditional methods of advertising these days, ones that don’t include high-dollar ads like Super Bowl commercials. The Ford CEO also recently revealed that the automaker plans to further reduce marketing costs through its connected vehicle services, which Farley says will soon deliver customer experiences with little or no cost to them of the automaker.
Regardless, as Ford works to move toward a totally digital purchasing model with far less inventory and vehicle configurations sitting on dealer lots, the automaker knows that it must shore up its post-purchase experience to ensure that customers remain happy even after taking delivery of their new vehicle and signing off on all the requisite paperwork, particularly if it also charges those customers fixed prices rather than allowing them to haggle in that regard.
We’ll have more on Ford’s future strategies soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for continuous Ford news coverage.
Apologies, but this article has me triggered. Took delivery of my first Ford (new or otherwise) in over 16 yrs. precisely because of the horrid dealership experiences. Quality was still ok back then. Ford got me interested again with the intriguing tech available on the Powerboost.
I don’t care how you look at it, spending 80k (out the door) is not a small sum of money. You’d think your truck would be delivered to you in new condition.
But I guess 10 months of waiting shows I’m a committed buyer so the dealer (Ron Dupratt Ford) has no issue handing over a truck with a loose and defective cowl trim, multiple dents and scratches on the paint, fish eyes on the roof, gouges on several pieces of interior trim, heat shield above the rear axle falling off because the glue is melting (ironic), rusted exhaust hangers, differential covers, seat belt brackets, etc. etc. They also have no issue kicking me to the curb when I ask them to help correct the issues. The factory’s customer service is not on your advocate either. I’ve reached out to the Ford social media team, Ford customer care center, all without results. My local dealer is unable to do anything without factory authorizations. Admittedly, the truck is an admirable machine in general, but looking closer at especially interior quality, it’s shocking and disappointing how cheaply it is built.
I really hope Farley delivers on this, that will make the difference between me staying in the fold or not.
I’d have walked away.
If you are hoping for help from Ford’s Customer Service, you better not hold your breath! Ford’s CS can give ATT a run for their money.
Meanwhile Farley is intent on becoming a Rock Star, Ford’s customer service, quality, and Supply Chains issues are taking a back seat!
Rock Star says it all. I deal with this on a smaller scale in my business and know it all too well.
Post-purchase experience? For example, honoring warranties?
So much over thinking. Just make reliable vehicles that look and perform well. All will be good. Keep it simple.
Adding insult to injury, my experience with the local dealership was horrendous. It was obvious they wanted me to walk away from my purchase with shenanigans and lost paperwork. They won’t respond completely in emails for fear of writing down their lies. Ford dealerships need a standard of conduct to adhere to rather then a bunch of money grabbing sheisters out to challenge legitimate military discounts and ford special offers. This made me reluctant to use this dealerships service department for fear of the same. I have yet to get a response regarding the title for said new vehicle regarding the title paperwork which has yet to materialize. Good luck.
I had a similar experience … my dealership (after agreeing on the price) marked up the XLT Hybrid Maverick by nearly 5 grand, then to try and make me feel better dropped two grand off and demanded that I cough up 5 grand all the while giving my trading far below actual trade-in value. The problem to me is not only the quality of their vehicles but the lack of accountabliity dealerships have. I’d rather order straight from Ford and know the price would be 100% honored and not these “shenanigans” dealers like to play.
This may be wishful thinking, but, I think this chip and covid fiasco will greatly increase the demand for a change in the entire sales model for automobiles. Many states have laws that prop up the dealer franchise model and prohibition of direct sales, but, many of those states also had or have blue laws, or laws so obsolete they are no longer enforced.
I believe we will see a change within the next few years.
I have considered Ford a time or two, but, the local dealers are so awful that I set the idea aside. Salespeople who will not even look up from their smart-phones, or break up their conversations to greet the customer. Snotty attitude when they DO deign to talk with you. AMV stickers back when vehicles were in plentiful supply. And, the final nail in the coffin: “I like my truck / car fine, but the service department…!”
Post buying experience, you take away the dealerships having stock to sell and service departments WHO NEEDS FORD ???????? And the last F^*^^*^*^*ing thing I need in a vehicle is the F^*^*^*^*ing internet to purchase ANYTHING !!!!!!!! Plus Ford already has issue between the system software already there, so adding more will help I am sure. Perhaps Ford should go back to building quality in all their vehicle models. But then hey, Farley is more interested in FORD, Fix Or Repair Daily more !!!!!!!!!!
just bought a new Lincoln Corsair, and I expect excellent service —- will be sorely disappointed otherwise. RW
I want an Aviator so bad I can taste it. I will not. be buying one because my town is small and the only Lincoln agency is the Ford store. Sales people who won’t talk to you, and a service department that is not a service department according to locals I have talked with.
Farley’s failed and misguided focus on EVs has sent quality into the toilet. He needs to quit trying to shove EVs down our throat and focus on quality. Over 3 Million recalls, engine failures, car fires, etc. He is failing.
I admit that sometimes I have difficulty following the plan as elucidated by Farley…. so my feeling is that he must be so far ahead of everyone that the next guy things he is leading. My experience with my dealer has been excellent to date although it has recently changed hands. All said, the dealership customer experience will separate the winners and losers in this business. Farley knows if you don’t win the first 30 seconds in front of your clients, someone else will.
My dealer experience (Zook Motors) with the purchase of a 2022 Escape was excellent and the the post purchase service just as good. The Ford Pass app on the other hand is horrendous in my opinion. Not intuitive, not helpful and generally annoying (if not downright dangerous) If this where Ford sees its future for post purchase marketing….good luck….
From my experiences with Lincoln of Memphis, Ford needs all of the dealership post-sale help they can get. The service department experience is literally the only thing I dislike, hate about my Nautilus.
Their appointments are out weeks in advance, they don’t answer phone calls or emails, won’t do repairs and maintenance on the same visit, won’t pick up/deliver the vehicle for appointments unless you schedule months out (and even then you don’t get the advertised loaner), and every communication comes with a healthy dose of condescension and attitude.
The dealership literally doesn’t care, and filing complaints with customer relations goes nowhere.
I have driven Fords all my life. That would be 49 years. My father drove Fords since 1962. He built Ford race cars. The service has gone down hill completely.
I took my 2019 Escape in for warranty work and they had it 3 days. I still have the problem with my fuel tank and gas mileage is in the toilet. T h ey slipped and as they said my car was normal. They also told me there was another escape just like mine and was doing the same exact thing. There was no problem though. BALONEY!