NMMA CSI report touts success of owners in certified dealer program

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New data indicate dealerships that complete the Marine Industry Certified Dealership Program continue to receive higher Customer Satisfaction Index scores than their non-certified counterparts.

Measuring customer satisfaction in nine key areas, the 2015 National Marine Manufacturers Association’s CSI scores again draw a clear distinction between certified and non-certified dealers, according to the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas.

Steve Pizzolato, founder and CEO of Avala Marketing Group, which gathers and evaluates data for the annual NMMA CSI numbers, said the correlation between certification and improved customer satisfaction grows stronger each year.

“We’ve been doing this since the inception of the NMMA CSI program, about 2003, and we’ve surveyed about 70,000 consumers,” Pizzolato said in a statement. “We think we’ve surveyed a high percentage of owners in the industry. My speculation is that certified dealers are concentrating on areas we know consumers find most important, and perhaps non-certified dealers are not.”

The largest, and what Pizzolato said is the most important gap in the 2015 numbers can be found in the “overall dealer” category, where certified dealerships received a cumulative score of 91.3, compared with the 88.4 registered by non-certified businesses. The 2.8-point difference is the largest seen in the category since data compilation began.

“Once again we see convincing evidence that the certification program not only works, but it’s working better than it ever has,” said Sonja Moseley, MICD program director. “Achieving and maintaining high CSI scores like these is what certification has been built on, and certified dealers’ dedication to excellence comes across clear.”

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