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Who’s Minding the Store?

(Posted on Jul 24, 2013 at 03:48AM )

I recently read that today the reality is that, whether prospective buyers are in your virtual showroom or your physical showroom, they’re a buyer. Maybe not today, but statistically the Internet customer is highly likely to buy within 90 days.

94% of car buyers begin the process online, according to recent estimates, yet most dealerships attribute less than 30% of actual sales to Internet leads. Why the discrepancy? Most consumers do research online but instead of submitting a lead, they decide to call or walk into a dealership when they’re ready to buy. Because of all the research they can do on their own, though, customers today visit only 1.4 dealerships before purchasing a car, down from 4.5 in 2005, according to J.D. Power.

And, according to a recent study by CAR-Research XRM, only 25% of people leave showrooms because they are “still shopping.” The rest leave because of inventory, financing or some other issue. These customers are ready to buy, the only question is, are they buying from you?

Statistically speaking this means that you have a better than a 50/50 chance of selling 75% of customers that walk through your door. You now have the best odds for conversions than ever before.

So if you don’t have the right sales management, finance management and sales team you are losing sales. Patting people on the back is great and there isn’t anyone that doesn’t appreciate praise but if you want to have the managers and salespeople who are true leaders; that will have the right inventory;  Mangers that want to get involved with every customer that drives on your lot and salespeople that know how to deal with customers to get the sale- you need to compensate them. This is the only way you are going to recruit the real talent. In other words you need seasoned people that have a solid track record of consistently exceeding goals and objectives.


As I stated in my blog "Take Back Your Marketing” The technology exists today for dealers to get much better results from their own website. Technology is constantly changing the marketing landscape and dealers today can use smaller more efficient marketing companies that will work for them and cut back on the1000s of dollars they are paying the big classified sites and big marketers (they don’t need anymore) in much more productive ways with much better results.

Once you have built the right sales and marketing team you should have an outside consulting company come in quarterly to audit the performance of the sales and marketing departments who can provide fresh out of the box ideas of new industry developments, potential problem areas that are not being noticed and possible solutions to ongoing problems.

This means that by putting your precious resources to work efficiently in the right areas your ROI will be higher and give you results that will drive more to the bottom line.

Posted By Bill Cosgrove

DealerNet Services