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How car dealers can use small wins to spark big growth in 2021 – Gary Barbera, Barbera Autoland

Today on CBT News, Gary Barbera joins the show to reflect on 2020 in automotive and to look ahead to the challenges facing car dealers in 2021. Barbera is the President and Founder of Barbera Autoland in Philadelphia, PA. 

Barbera begins the conversation by looking back at 2020. Like many car dealers have reported, Barbera’s auto group had a solid year. He says the company was carrying a lot of momentum before facing the shutdowns in March. Barbera said the pandemic taught him to not look too far ahead for his company. The pandemic proved that market conditions are very unpredictable. The best thing car dealers can do to prepare themselves is to ensure every aspect of the dealership is running as efficiently as possible.

Barbera then discusses the integration of digital retailing. He says that he would grade his dealership’s online integration as a “C+”. Many customers in the northern Philadelphia area are blue-collar and prefer to come to a showroom to kick the tires. Over the last twelve months, the company has seen accelerated growth in its online platform, “Gary Barbera Store to Your Door”, as more customers have become acclimated to this new method of automotive retailing. 

Many car dealers and market analysts believe that the spring could be a strong season for car sales. Barbera pumps the brakes on these thoughts though, reminding car dealers to take each day with the same approach. Every day provides car dealers the chance to make little wins that can have a big impact.

Looking ahead to the next three quarters of 2021, Barbera is trying to remind his team to be grateful for the opportunity to work in the automotive industry. While many other business sectors struggled during the pandemic, automotive retailers found ways to succeed. Dealers and their teams must continue to stay humble and hungry because the market has proved it’s capable of dramatically shifting at any time.

Barbera concludes the conversation by discussing the growing push towards electric vehicles. He says he is focused primarily on selling vehicles, regardless of what models are sent by the OEMs. Dealers must focus on what they can control to make their business successful. Despite what car dealers feel, the automakers are moving forward with producing EVs. Dealers who embrace EVs and work diligently to sell them to consumers are best positioned to find success over the next decade.


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CBT News
CBT News
For over 10 years, CBT News has been informing and helping automotive retail professionals grow their businesses and thrive in their careers through an awarding-winning, on-demand streaming platform. With exclusive interviews featuring the biggest names in the industry, daily newscasts, up-to-date market data, and exclusive articles covering the latest trends, CBT News is your #1 source for auto industry news and content.

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