Automotive sales training is the one thing that we all think
we have enough of until we get more. That’s right no matter
how good you are today, you can always become better. And
once we do get a little bit better or learn a new technique
it is normally pretty easy to reflect back on the deals that
we have worked in the not so distant past and think, “Wow, If
I had only known this last week when I was with “Mr. & Mrs
__________, I probably would have sold them a car.
This is why this column will be dedicated solely to the purpose
of examining different aspects and situations that occur during
the process of a car deal. Each month we will look either at a
new method for contending with the obstacles that we all face
in the day to day process or we will brush up on old techniques
regarding the automotive sales process.
I am sure every automotive salesperson reading this article
has encountered the customer that came to their dealership
looking for a certain vehicle, requiring specific “must have”
options yet was strapped by a budget that was several hundred
dollars a month away from anything that could be considered
reasonable, at least considering the demands the customer is
making. And after our best attempt to find them the vehicle
that meets all of their requirements, in the hope that they
will adjust their thinking when it comes down to their less
than reasonable budget, we find that they are not flexible at
all. That’s right, they want a brand new, seven passenger,
leather appointed, suv for $300 a month. And if we can’t get
it for them then they are just going to shop until they find
someone who can. Or so they say. But what they will really shop
for is someone who can sell them on the idea of buying something
that fits their needs just as well as what they are requesting
but is more in line with their budget – possibly a previously
owned suv or maybe even a minivan.
That’s right; they are going to buy from the first salesperson
that is capable of realigning their thinking. By realigning
their thinking I mean they need to be “switched”. Many
salespeople I witness think this means that they should go
back to their customer and ask, “Hey, what about a used one?”
or “What about a minivan instead of an suv?” If you have been
in the business for more than a day you know that the customer
normally responds by saying “No” to these two questions. Asking
your customer to buy something other than what they initially
asked for is at best, a feeble attempt to switch them and
definitely does not exhibit any salesmanship.
At this point you need to lead your customer. You need to become
a salesperson. You need to share with them the benefits in order
to help them realign their thinking. Below are the steps to take
if you are trying to switch your customer.
+ Determine which vehicle to switch to first (preferably
something that is close to what they are looking for yet more
in line with their budget)
+ Ask your customer to come with you for a moment (don’t ask
them if they would like to look at something else)
+ Take them to the vehicle that you want to switch them to.
+ Then present all of the benefits of the vehicle you are
trying to switch them to.
By taking the extra time to actually take your customer out
and show them a vehicle that suits their needs (and is in
line with their budget) you will increase your chances of
selling them. Once you have taken these steps to switch them
from one car to another one of three things will happen.
+ They will consider the vehicle you have shown them (And
hopefully buy it)
+ They will reconsider their budget on the vehicle they
originally expressed an interest in and hopefully increase
their offer enough that you can sell them it.
+ They will not consider the option you are giving them and
leave without purchasing. (however you will have more to talk
about on the follow up phone call)
Sure to many of you this may seem pretty basic. To me it is
too. But remember that next time you want to just ask your
customer to consider another vehicle rather than taking control
and leading your customer to an alternative vehicle for them to
Article written by Biana Babinsky.