What do salespeople need to follow in the evolving auto industry?
The auto industry is undergoing an unprecedented period of change, with new technologies, customer expectations, and competition driving rapid changes in the way cars are sold. Salespeople in the auto industry must stay informed and adapt to this new environment in order to be successful.
As we head into what is forecasted to be a tough economic condition, it’s more important than ever for salespeople to be armed with the skills necessary to close deals. Jen Suzuki of eDealer Solutions and an instructor at the NADA Dealer Academy, in an interview with CBTNews, urges salespeople to focus on the following three areas:
Listening to customers
In order to build trust and relationships with customers, it’s important that salespeople take the time to truly listen to them. What are their needs and wants? What are their budget constraints? What are their must-haves? By taking the time to understand the customer’s needs, salespeople can more effectively match them with the right vehicle.
Asking the right questions
Once the salesperson has a good understanding of the customer’s needs, it’s important to ask the right questions in order to determine what the customer is really looking for. Does the customer need a vehicle that is great on gas or one that has a lot of horsepower? Does the customer need a vehicle with a third row or one that is compact? By asking the right questions, salespeople can determine which vehicle is the best fit for the customer.
In order to close more deals, salespeople need to focus on building relationships with their customers. This can be done by maintaining eye contact, using the customer’s name, and being genuine. Salespeople should also focus on building relationships with other members of the dealership, as this can lead to additional sales opportunities.
By focusing on these three areas, salespeople can brush up on their skills and be better prepared for a tough sales year.
As purchase decisions become more complex, it’s important for businesses to adjust their processes to accommodate. One way to do this is by focusing on training initiatives from the executive level down. This will help to ensure that managers are properly mentoring and coaching their teams. It’s also important to focus on a few topics at a time, so employees don’t become overwhelmed.
Video calls can help customers better understand vehicle features. Customers can watch an expert in the field explain the features and ask questions along the way. Another important step is to prioritize entering customer data into the system as soon as possible. This will help to create a more complete picture of the customer and their needs. By taking these steps, businesses will be better equipped to handle the complexities of today’s purchase decisions.
Some manufacturers have created programs to help dealerships handle customer requests for new vehicles. For example, Toyota has a program called “I Can’t Wait” that allows customers to buy a new vehicle from another dealership and get the same price or lower. We’re looking at if there’s a way we can go above and beyond for the customer. We’re looking at how we can keep the customer happy and get them in the door.
If a dealership has customers who want to purchase a new vehicle but has sold out of inventory, it can offer to make a sale at a lower price now or let the customer wait for a higher price next year. It’s also important to build relationships with other dealerships in the same market. If we have a customer that we can’t make a sale with, we can refer them to another dealer that has what they want.
It’s important for dealerships to be proactive in managing customer expectations and making sure they understand the entire process. The biggest problem we have is that customers want to know what they can get now. We have to be honest with the customer and tell them what they can get now and what they may be able to get down the road. Some customers may have unrealistic expectations, so dealerships need to ensure that they are educating customers on what they can get and when they can get it.
We need to explain to the customer what the options are. If a customer wants a new vehicle, we need to tell them that they can get one next year or they can get it now, but they may have to pay more. Or we can find them a certified pre-owned vehicle. It’s important for dealerships to be honest with customers to avoid disappointing them. Dealerships need to be prepared to address customers’ needs, even if it means making a sale at a loss. The risk is not being honest with the customer and telling them that you can get them the vehicle. The risk of not being honest with the customer is that they may not come back.
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