Before you became an automotive salesperson, you were a customer. How did you feel about the car purchase process? What type of research did you do?
How long did it take before you decided to purchase? Did you call any dealerships for information and pricing? How many dealerships did you go to before you bought? Did you care where you purchased your new vehicle? Was the product a concern? Was the sales person?
Understanding a customer is easy when we understand ourselves as customers. Everything we have said and done to a salesperson is exactly what our customers are saying and doing to us now.
Your customers have already made the decision to look and possibly purchase a new vehicle when they enter your dealership.
The following is typical of what your customers are thinking and doing before and during their dealership visit.
1 Year to 3 Months Before Purchase
During dinner, husband or wife mentions they should start looking for a new vehicle. The typical reason for such a big decision: keeping up with the Joneses, manufacturer's promotions, driving down the highway and seeing a beautiful new vehicle, a need, a want.
About a Month Before the Purchase
The couple discusses such things as how they will pay for their new vehicle; monthly budget; how much savings they have (cash down); and whether they will trade in.
The Night Before the Possible Purchase
They decide to go to a dealership, but feel they will not buy just yet. However if they see something nice and close to what they want and meet a salesperson who understands them, they just might do it.
When the Customer Enters The Dealership
The couple tries to look like they do not need help or that they haven't even thought about purchasing. They say exactly the same things we use to say to car salespeople: “Just looking”… “We don't need any help”… “We just started looking”… “What is your best price on that car?”
Because we are professionals and understand our customers, we know why they are saying these things.
During the Selection Process
They are undecided about colors, options, etc., and become resistant. The reality about actually purchasing a vehicle is coming into focus. Emotions such as fear and uncertainty begin to surface.
During the Negotiations
Some customers become distant and uneasy. But if you have done your job as a professional, you can confidently ask for the sale now. Negotiating is all about psychology, and how you articulate every word becomes critical to the sale at this point. Explain everything and make sure every condition is clarified. Assist your customer through the process. It need not be painful, especially for them.
SOLD - They Pick Up Their New Vehicle
Take your time in the delivery process. Leave the customer with a lasting impression. If you have done your job correctly and professionally, customers will feel great about their new vehicle purchase and speak highly of you, your dealership and the manufacturer. This will lead to an excellent client base, referrals, and repeat business.
Darin's Wrap Up
When we understand ourselves as customers, understanding our customers is easy. The more we understand and give to our customers, the more we will receive.
Darin George is founder of the Automotive Sales College (1-888-681-7355/[email protected])