The disconnect between today’s automotive dealer sales team and car buyer seems at times to be every growing. In some cases, car buyers will find a car on a local dealer’s website, reach out to the dealership with some questions about the car, and then receive three separate calls or emails from three different salespeople. None of the salespeople are aware that other people on their team are calling these buyers, which leads the buyer to perceive the dealership as having, at best, poor communication skills. Even worse, the salespeople are likely urging the potential customer to “come into the store and look around,” or “come in to get the best deal available in the market” before the customer has even received an answer to the initial questions they asked. Although this is a traditional sales approach, it doesn’t work well with today’s more modern car buyer.
The biggest difference between yesterday and today’s car buyer is the amount of knowledge they possess before contacting you. The Internet has opened the door for consumers to become experts in all things automotive and now they seem to only come to you with questions which need more clarification. These car buyers already know what your dealership has available, which cars and features they’re most interested in, and they probably even know both the vehicles’ retail and wholesale values.
Many of today’s car buyers are put off by the traditional, intense dealership experience. They’re seeking a more modern, streamlined experience with salespeople – an experience in which both parties share equal knowledge and footing. In short, here are some characteristics that educated car buyers are expecting, even demanding, from car salespeople:
- Act Professional. This may sound basic, but given the example above about a whole sales team calling the same customer, it might be a forgotten characteristic at times. Communicate with each other and display etiquette when it comes to serving customers; you’re all on the same team and you all have the same goal of closing a sale.
- Be Respectful of Their Time. Many car salespeople waste time by not acknowledging the buyers’ specific needs. In the age of customers demanding services to be quicker, you need to answer the car buyers’ questions promptly and be mindful of the time with they are investing you.
- Listen to the Car Buyer. As stated, today’s car buyers are much more knowledgeable and specific than they used to be. Don’t try to talk their ear off on facts they can find online. Listen to what they know and offer guidance when needed.
- Answer Their Questions. Salespeople will come off disrespectful if they tip-toe around the buyer’s questions. Answer their questions or they’ll find a dealership that can.
The retail automotive sales industry is unlike anything else in the sales realm; many other sales arenas are simpler, with less expensive and complex transactions required. A lot of other industry salespeople have a keen understanding on how to communicate properly with customers. Several retail automotive dealership sales teams have yet to fully shift to modern and progressive sales methods, but it’s not too late for you to shift into gear. Get training on how to best deal with today’s customers.
A great place to start is at InterstateTraining.com, which has hours on on-demand courses on sales training, product training, customer role play, and more. Learn at your pace and start selling successfully to the modern buyer. To learn more, visit www.InterstateTraining.com or call Interstate National at (678) 894-3500.