Penske, Hendrick tops in online reputation study

Penske Automotive Group Inc. and Hendrick Automotive Group outranked their dealership group peers in an online reputation study released Monday.

Reputation, which helps automotive brands and dealership groups manage online reviews and customer feedback, said Penske ranked first on the list of U.S. public dealership groups, while Hendrick topped the list of U.S. privately held groups.

Nissan had the highest score among U.S. nonluxury brands, while Infiniti ranked first among luxury brands, according to Reputation’s study.

The annual report analyzed 20,000 auto dealerships and brands in the U.S. and Canada, drawing on customer feedback data from Google, Facebook, Twitter and other online sources, the company said. It also worked with the YouGov research firm on a survey of 1,000 consumers about their vehicle research and purchase habits.

Reputation draws its rankings from what it calls its Reputation Score, which measures a company’s customer sentiment, visibility and engagement on a scale of zero to 1,000 using such metrics as the number of reviews left, the average number of stars per review and responses to customer reviews.

Reputation found that the volume of reviews in 2021 is higher than ever before.

Dealerships this year faced the challenges of the continued pandemic and inventory constraints brought on by a shortage of microchips, the company said. The number of reviews that discussed the inventory shortage increased by more than 32 times from January to July.

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