Steve Stauning, Founder of SteveStauning.com and regular contributor at CBT News, sat down with CBT’s Joe Gumm to discuss some simple changes you can make to increase profits at your dealership.
Demo drives can seem redundant to the salesperson, but Steve wants you to avoid that rut and not miss out on opportunities. There are positives within redundancy, he explains. Patterns indicate that you are following a process. During a test drive, whether it be your first or fifth of the day, use your time wisely and gauge if you are heading in the right direction. Watching for visual cues will help you identify if you’re in the right car and moving towards a sale. It’s during these drives that a customer is experiencing the feeling of ownership for the first time. Keep the selling and telling to a minimum and be attentive.
Are you capitalizing on your service department during the in-store transaction? Steve says there are benefits to be made here. When a sales manager implements the introduction of buyer and service they could be potentially scheduling their first appointment which translates to fixed-ops cash. Forming these relationships also increases your chances of selling them their next car when the time comes. Don’t forget- by not making introductions mandatory you are hurting your CSI. OEMs’ want to know if this is something you are doing, so stay safe and profitable by using the downtime found often doing F&I to introduce the two.
Another way your managers can continue to build success is to hold regular training meeting in-between larger ones. Training needs to be consistently reinforced and occur regularly. A simple way to achieve this is by assigning different topics to the different Sales Managers so they can alternate on presentations weekly. Remember to keep these short and to the point.
Steve also spoke about a few habits a sales employee can adopt for better business. He believes in the referral process. Its proven that referrals close at higher rates and grosses are better. So be proud of what you do and let your community know it. You would be surprised at how many people come out of the woodworks by noticing any activity that salesperson has in the community. Keep in mind, the simplest way to get referrals is to ask for them. Make yourself known and you will be sought out.
Steve also had some advice old school dealerships. Stick to a few simple steps he says. Dealers today are still losing the most business because of unanswered phone calls. Do not lose sight of the little things as they still hold value within the industry.
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