Improving Car Sales Methods
Understanding the Future of Customer Interaction
For decades, it seemed like there was only one, simple method for selling cars. Customers would come to the dealership, a salesperson would assess their needs, and then provide them with the vehicle options that would work best for them. Customers and employees would talk face to face, and then employees would close the deal by offering the customer a price at the end of the conversation. Dealerships were the sole gatekeepers of information about cars and what pricing should look like.
Now, with the power of the Internet, face-to-face meetings are barely necessary. Customers can browse the inventory of any dealership from their work desk, or from the comfort of their own bed. They can compare dealerships’ prices with other prices locally and even internationally. Dealerships are no longer the gatekeepers – the world is now privy to all of the information surrounding car sales. At first, this can seem daunting to a dealership but do not fear, you can use this turn of events to your advantage and change the way you make sales accordingly with these tips:
- Assume that your customer has prior knowledge. There was a time customers had no idea about the ins and outs of car buying unless they worked in the industry themselves. However, now that everyone has access to a myriad of prices, comparisons, and reviews, most people have done some research before walking into your dealership. Buying a car is often a huge financial commitment, and most people want to guarantee the best results for themselves. As a consultant, don’t expect that you will be starting from scratch with every customer. Listen to the information that they already come in with and use it as a starting point to guide them toward the car that you think will best fit their needs.
- Be transparent. Nowadays, people are used to having information at their fingertips. A dealer should feel comfortable sharing reports for cars with customers and be transparent about pricing. Customers were never able to access this information before, but now, withholding this information could make a dealership seem untrustworthy. Let your customer do their own research and use you as a trusted resource.
- Don’t over-price. A dealer would never want to purposely over-price their vehicles – but if not vigilant, it can still end up happening. Customers will notice if your prices don’t line up with the prices of other dealerships in their area. This is why it is so important to keep your prices updated and competitive. Dealerships can count on Laser Appraiser Dealer Studio for this very reason. With an appraisal tool that can deliver accurate pricing information about each local market, you can always stay current and competitive in order to “win” each customer interaction.
- Minimize the time that your customer spends at your dealership. Having a good website for your dealership is key – if customers can’t see the inventory that you have online, it is unlikely that they will want to come to your dealership. Improving your website and keeping your inventory up to date will allow customers to see what you can offer them.
- Work as a team with your customer. Before, car salesmen had an advantage in that they provided all of the vehicle options and car knowledge. Now, customers come into dealerships with tools and such information in hand. Instead of fearing your customers’ knowledge, capitalize on it. Consultants at a dealership should guide customers toward solutions that they have expressed interest in. Recommend options that you think are best for your client and remember that you are functioning as a team to get your client the best possible vehicle for their lifestyle and needs.
Access to knowledge is a great thing for everyone. If your dealership isn’t able to keep up in this Internet-driven market, it is sure to be left behind. Use these tips to make sure that your dealership remains competitive and successful.