An F&I early touch is the most profitable transaction


The F&I department is under constant pressure to increase profitability while enhancing the buying experience for the customer. The dealer wants increases in PVR and F&I product counts to fuel their reinsurance or DOWC positions. The sales department wants the F&I department to move faster so the customer does not have to wait. The back office wants the deals turned in flawless and on time. The banks and credit unions want more deals. The F&I product provider wants more product sales. The customer demands that the F&I department moves as fast as possible. With all of this being said, the F&I manager has a VERY tough job fueled with pressure from every direction.

What typically happens is that F&I managers lose focus and fall off their process. We know that without a process it’s very difficult to maximize the transaction. When you skip the needs analysis, it’s difficult to tailor a presentation based on that specific customer. When you skip the factory warranty or used car warranty presentation, it’s more difficult to overcome objections during the menu presentation. When you DO NOT get involved early in the transaction, it’s tough to build a great first impression and rapport.

You MUST Follow the Process

You MUST follow a process for every deal, every time without exception. It is also critical that someone in the dealership is holding that process accountable. The highest performing retail F&I producers do not deviate from their process and are open to accountability. Talking about process is not the sexiest topic, however it is an important one. The most important part of the process is the early F&I touch.

The Art of the Early F&I Touch

The earlier the F&I manager gets involved, the more profitable the transaction will be.  Do not grow roots to your chair waiting for deals to be brought to you.  Spend some time sitting at the sales desk/tower helping facilitate deals. Walk the showroom floor eager to meet your guests. Here is a word track that will help you.

“Mr./Mrs. customer, my name is Adam Marburger and I am the financial services manager here at ABC Motors.  I wanted to thank you for coming in today and for giving us an opportunity to serve you. In the event you purchase from us today, I am the one that handles all of the legal paperwork. During your visit today, if you have any comments, questions, or concerns, my office is right over there and I have an open-door policy.  Again, thank you for giving us an opportunity to serve you.”

A first impression takes seven seconds to make and can last a lifetime.  You must look your guest in the eye and be genuine.  You can forget about who is driving the car and how many miles driven per year if your client likes you.  We must focus on this and it all starts with getting up and shaking hands on the showroom floor.

A great first impression followed up with exposing your client’s personality type will lead to the most profitable transaction. I can promise you that your PVR will go up if you focus on getting involved early in the transaction.

Did you enjoy this article from Adam Marburger? Read other articles from him here.

Car Biz Today, the official resource of the retail automotive industry.

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