The cool weather is giving way to longer days and warmer temperatures. Car salespeople are looking forward to a new season: spring sales season. Every year, depressed winter car sales figures see a surge as springtime arrives. It’s a trend that’s evident in the past 15 years of monthly sales records, and likely quite a bit further back yet.
Salespeople and managers can prepare for the boost in traffic to make the most of the spring sales surge. Here are four reasons why there’s a bump in spring car sales and how your store can capitalize on them.
Of course, the warm weather is a perfect incentive for car buyers to get out and find a new vehicle. Once the snowy, wet weather has passed, it’s more comfortable to browse car lots and take a test drive. Certain areas of the nation aren’t as affected by winter for car sales, however, like southern California, Florida, the Carolinas, and other peripheral states and communities where the climate is moderate.
In climates where there’s an extreme between winter and summer, play off the ‘fun factor’ for drivers. Carry inventory into spring that will encourage car shoppers to let loose, whether it’s open-air convertibles or sunroof-equipped models or high-performance vehicles.
Related: How to Take Advantage of the Peak Season Sales
Mid-Model Year Incentives
During this period, the number of new model year releases are fewer. Incentives from car manufacturers offer a financial benefit to buyers who need a mode of transportation, not necessarily the latest and greatest model. Low interest rates and slashed pricing are the driving factors.
For cost-driven buyers, exploit the incentives by stocking up on trim levels with the highest rebates as well as the next-to-bottom trim levels. This seems to be where the budget-conscious buyers tend to gravitate towards, rather then the entry-level.
One of the biggest factors – if not the biggest – for the surge in spring car sales is tax time. Car buyers who suddenly have an influx of income are able to afford the new vehicle they’ve had their eye on.
Dealers can make the most of buyers during tax refund season by advertising around the topic rather than the product. For example, social media posts can convey a message like, “Why spend your tax refund on a down payment? Qualify for a new vehicle at XYZ Motors for no money down!”
The average tax refund in the US for 2019 was $2,869 according to USA Today. A good idea for any promotion would be to keep down payments or costs below this average.
Winter Car Troubles
It’s no secret that winter weather is hard on vehicles. There’s a natural boost in car sales in spring as people aim to replace their aging, unreliable cars. However, you can capitalize on this segment by proactively tracking service customers who have had major repairs done in the past six months. Particularly, identify owners with vehicles who are nearing the end of factory warranty or have passed factory warranty by a year.
Partner with the service manager to develop reports to identify customers who fall into this category. Incentivizing the sale often takes just a mention of reliability, although it must be done in a positive way rather than playing off their fear. Keeping their new payment consistent with their current payment is also attractive, and that’s often possible with spring incentives.
Related: Summer Sales Strategies
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