In just about all transactions and services today (due to the internet), people expect to encounter ‘experts’. When confronted by vague or meaningless answers, we are now categorizing those encounters as ‘a waste of time’.
In the car business, you too can be viewed as a waste of time. It’s easy. All you have to do is gear up your sales staff to be sellers and closers rather than product experts. Most of you are already doing this…and you are viewed by your customers as ‘a waste of time’.
Congratulations! All of those high falootin’ sales experts have given you the much sought after moniker of ‘waste of time’ in your quest for sales.
There is a store in Florida that has become the number one Lexus dealer in the world. They did it by simply ‘not being a waste of time’ to their customers. They made each part of their team ‘experts’. Experts in product (both new and used), experts in financing, experts in fashioning deals, experts in how to deliver and demonstrate a vehicle.
The name of the store is JM Lexus. They don’t have salesmen, they have product experts. They have delivery experts and just about any other type of experts that a serious customer would expect from a place where they are going to spend $10,000 to $80,000!
So, you say you only want sales people who think they are at a rodeo and want to ‘close’ the deal? Think again. That’s not what a serious customer is looking for. They are not looking for an expert in closing them, that would be absurd. That would be like seeking out an expert in manipulation. We all know how much we like to be manipulated.
Since the internet, email and digital interfaces have taken over the world, the whole of Western (an a lot of Eastern) civilization has become highly familiar with a thing called a ‘help desk’. If someone at the help desk were to stop helping you and start selling you, how would you view that ‘help desk’? A waste of time!
What does it take to change the culture? Putting people in your staff at the position they are best suited for and then having them become experts. This means that your front line (formerly sales people) spend their time learning everything about their inventory both new and used. They have to answer product questions and give information regarding the products that you have on your lot to people who, prior to this arrangement, often knew more about the product than the salespeople did.
You have some great closers? Make them experts in fashioning deals. They now become an extension of your F&I department. They study financing and all facets of how to put together an attractive deal, they don’t pretend to be product experts, because that is the department of the front line people.
One more thing, JM Lexus has experts in delivery. That’s all they do, deliver and demonstrate vehicles after the transaction has been completed.