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Differentiate_Your_Dealership

In an era when new vehicle margins are razor thin, it’s difficult to compete on price alone. The good news is you don’t have to. Although many customers claim that price is the most important factor when it comes to purchasing, we all know from experience that other factors weigh into the decision. 

When a customer is deciding where to purchase a vehicle, it’s important that your dealership has a powerful differentiator or message that sets your brand apart. If you’re a salesperson, the same concept applies. What do you do that others won’t do? 

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Successful_People_Prepare

This editorial appeared in the April 2017 edition of AutoSuccess Magazine.

As I was catching up with a group of colleagues, one of them used the adage, “I would rather be lucky than good.” I paused for a moment, and then without thinking, I blurted out, “Whoever said that must not have been very good to begin with.” They all looked at me with a familiar expression of sarcastic acknowledgment before one person took the brave step to ask me to explain myself.

While the tone in my answer may have seemed a little cocky or overconfident, my answer and belief in the lack of luck are deeply rooted in preparation. I am not one who hits a windfall — big wins through scratch-offs and raffles have escaped me. Sure, it would be nice to cash in on a big win, but the lack of a quick windfall doesn’t mean fortune hasn’t found its way into my life. I am certainly very fortunate and recognize that good things happen to me and around me. But good occurs because you do good things and put good things out into the universe. For me, those good things are steeped in a foundation of preparation.

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Metrics_to_Measure_Automotive_BDC_Performance

Does your dealership use an external BDC for sales calls? Many managers like to keep control of their sales process in house, but realistically, the majority of salespeople don’t have time to place the hundreds of calls necessary every week to keep their pipeline filled.

Additionally, many salespeople lack the skills to effectively engage consumers over the phone. The personality types that provide engaging in-person experiences don’t always translate well to over-the-phone experiences.

Using an external BDC is not about handing off the sales process to someone else; it’s about increasing the number of opportunities for your own team. If you’re not sure whether a virtual BDC can provide value or ROI, use these metrics to measure performance.

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How_to_Interview_Salespeople

This article first appeared in the February 2019 issue of AutoSuccess Magazine.

Dealers are struggling to fill sales positions, according to the NADA 2018 Dealership Workforce Study. Total sales consultant turnover is at 80 percent, and hiring efficiency is 46 percent, which means dealers need two new hires to find the right sales consultant. Additionally, 42 percent of sales consultant terminations happen within the first 90 days.

Why do dealers struggle with filling sales positions? Several factors come into play, including workplace culture, pay plans, lack of training and a low unemployment rate. But I also believe that many dealers are too quick to fill open positions. Finding the right fit for your dealership is a thoughtful and deliberate process.

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Prepare_Your_Dealership _Digital_Retail

This article was originally published in Dealer Magazine.

Does your dealership offer customers the option to purchase a car online? If not, you’re missing opportunities and sales. According to surveys, 83% of consumers want to do one or more steps of the purchase process online.

Of course, other surveys show that just as many consumers still want to visit a dealership to test drive a vehicle, trade in their vehicles and sign final documents. 

But that doesn’t mean you should adopt a wait-and-see mentality when it comes to online car buying. Manufacturers, large auto groups, used vehicle retailers and other third parties are rolling out a variety of solutions designed to capture sales from customers who are looking for a more convenient car buying process.

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How_to_Motivate_Salespeople

In the car business money has always been used to motivate salespeople. The idea is that commissions are a big enough motivator to drive salespeople to do what they need to do in order to sell a car.

Today we have to question whether this method works on a new breed of salespeople. I’m not referring to Millennials. I’ve never really liked the word “Millennial” because I don’t believe you can slap labels on an entire generation. Besides, I have noticed that many 40- to 50- year old salespeople fit into this new breed; which is simply a large percentage of people who aren’t super motivated by money.

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