The survey, conducted with 1000 respondents by BookMyGarage.com, reveals that trust drives over half of bookings. Of the respondents asked, 53% said they use a preferred garage because they trust them to resolve the issue with their car, or because they have used the same garage for years. Only 3% of the UK population selects its garage because it is a well-known brand.
For some the most attractive USP in a garage was their speed, efficiency and expertise. One in five said that the quick diagnosis of their car problem, and knowledgeable help, was their primary motivation for choosing a garage.
One in 10 made the decision to use a garage based on the availability of online booking. London leads the way in online bookings, with 1 in 3 (32%) booking car services this way, with the South East showing 1 in 4 (28%). The North West and Wales show 1 in 10 (9%) of bookings online.
This suggests that there is a real opportunity for garages that wish to boost their business by increasing bookings online, using a booking directory such as BookMyGarage.com.
UK motorists fear being cheated more than anything else when they book a garage, with three quarters (74%) stating that being oversold or facing hidden costs were their main worries. Four in ten (38%) were concerned about being oversold, while over a third (36%) feared hidden costs.
Karen Rotberg, director of BookMyGarage.com, said: "It's great to see that local garages came out as the preferred option for motorists looking for a reliable and reputable service.
"It has also highlighted that there is great scope for these garages to use a booking service such as BookMyGarage.com. This service can encourage both new and existing customers to book online at anytime of the day or night. The survey clearly shows that these garages can expand their reach, increase their customer base and improve customer service by embracing their online presence."
BookMyGarage.com is an interactive booking directory of garages launched by the Motorist's Organisation, which allows motorists to get instant prices for their car's servicing, MOT, and repair requirements from more than 5,000 UK garages.
The service is designed to cut through the complexity of car servicing by providing an easy to use online help guide to help ascertain what service a car requires, and instant access to quotes from a range of preferred local garages. Motorists are then able to book their preferred date and time online, in real time.
The management team behind this £1m investment by the Motorist's Organisation boasts a mix of previous experience at notable companies including Autotrader, Jobsite.com , Bentley and Rolls-Royce.