When signing the contract, customers don’t want to be overwhelmed by a long contract that they must sign multiple times. - Photo via Depositphotos.

When signing the contract, customers don’t want to be overwhelmed by a long contract that they must sign multiple times.

Photo via Depositphotos.

When choosing a rental car company, what does a customer look for? What makes a company stand out from the competition?

Dan Gingiss of CMO Network wrote an article posted on Forbes.com that details five ways that he believes a rental car company can improve its customer service experience and make the process simpler:

  • The contract: When signing the contract, customers don’t want to be overwhelmed by a long contract that they must sign multiple times. Rental companies should make the contract less intimidating by using icons and easy-to-understand language. Another idea is converting the contract process to an app. Desk employees need to be trained on how to properly explain the process to each customer.
  • The gas: There are usually two choices. Either you pay for a tank of gas upfront or you let the rental company fill the tank when you return it (usually at a rate that’s more than the average fill-up price). It would be helpful for a rental company to offer a “worry-free” return policy where it charges a customer a more reasonable price per gallon of gas used. 
  • The insurance: Many customers don’t understand all the features of an insurance policy, especially when it comes to rental car insurance. A lot of customers end up paying twice for the same insurance; they pay to their auto insurance company and to the rental car company. What if a rental car company added $2 to $3 to every rental and insured each vehicle automatically instead of offering a $20 per day insurance option?
  • The tolls: Rental car companies charge customers a per-day fee for having the E-Z toll pass device in the rental car. It’s charged even if a customer doesn’t use the device. What if a rental car company equipped the car with the toll device but it was already included in the price of the rental?
  • The vehicle: Rental companies could add a little extra to each car to help the experience stand out. Examples include bottles of water or mints in the vehicle when it’s picked up. Adding a thank-you note for being a customer with a telephone number if the person needs help with anything. Partnering with Sirius XM to equip all the rental vehicles with the radio service.
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