Who is more likely to purchase a car from your store?
a) Someone who submitted an online inquiry?
b) A phone up from a prospect who doesn’t really know what they want?
c) Someone who was in the showroom yesterday but didn’t buy?
If you chose ‘C’, ding! ding! ding! You’re right. All prospects can be buyers for you, but the one who actually touched tile up is the hottest lead you have.
How to Engage with Prospects
So how are you following up with these “be backs”?
Many salespeople don’t follow up with customers who’ve visited the showroom purely because they are out of sight, out of mind. Or even worse they don’t have the confidence and weren’t properly trained on how to follow up and what to say to re-engage potential customers. This type of leak results in missed sales opportunities and theoretically, hundreds of these customers many have slipped through the cracks over time. You can almost guarantee that customer will shop another dealership, and they might actually do the proper follow-up. Is that a chance you really want to take? That’s a big problem but fortunately one that is easy to solve for.
Any other dealership: 1
Here’s how to win:
Your goal: Get them back in the showroom.
Your challenge: How do I do this?
To begin, your salespeople and managers need to diagnose the issue quickly.
Most customers will tell your salespeople that they’re out of time or they need to talk over the purchase with their spouse, but research shows those reasons were actually true 3% of the time. There are many factors that contribute to a customer leaving the showroom floor. Firstly it could be that the decision is based on price and they’re still looking for a better deal. Another reason can be attributed to the sales person. The person may not have liked that particular sales person. It may be that they’re still shopping other brands. Or maybe Jimmy really needs to be picked up from soccer practice and they have to leave.
It’s been our experience that having a sales manager follow up may be a better way to get the real reason the person left your dealership, especially if they left because of the salesperson. The truth is you won’t know until you do the proper follow-up.
Let’s take a real example: your client visited your Ford dealership and test drove an F-150. They left saying they’re still shopping around and ended up visiting Toyota down the street and test drove a Tundra. The next day, no word from them. The next week, no word from them. What should you do?
Be proactive. This scenario is extremely common. Your salesperson should attempt to follow up by email, phone or text and can have it marked as a task in the CRM. Also, your salespeople need to know what to say to get them back in the door. One route is by making sure your salespeople know the specific advantages of doing business with your dealership over the competition. What differentiates your dealership – is it your extended warranty, free oil changes for life, exceptional customer service? Whatever it is, make sure your people know and are communicating this information to each potential buyer that they speak with. You need to convince the buyer that you’re offering a greater benefit to them by doing business with you that goes beyond price.
Also, make sure your salespeople control the conversation from the get go. Don’t get me wrong, having control of the conversation doesn’t mean bulldozing prospects. It means asking them the right questions that lead the customer to the conclusion that they need to buy from your dealership. Your customers will tell you what you need to know to sell them a car.
As a manager, it is your responsibility to:
1) Educate your salespeople on the what to say and why to say it.
For example: “Hi Jack this is Susan from ABC Ford. I just wanted to get back to you and thank you for visiting our dealership, and also to see if there are any questions I could answer for you regarding the F-150 you looked at.” Our “Whether You Buy a Car From Us or Not” script is another great script that hooks the trade with or without the sale and can be used in these situations.
2) Help them simulate or practice what they’ve been taught so they really know what to say each and every time. The best success comes from practice, so simulate daily with our 3-in-a-row or firephone exercise.
3) Hold them accountable to execute to this standard. Make sure your people are inputting all data into the CRM so that either you follow up with the unsold customer or they do.
Take yesterday’s guest sheets into your morning meeting and role play with your people until they get this down.
The Unsold Opportunity
When you’ve trained your team to consistently handle showroom prospects this way, how many more cars will you sell every day, every week, every month? Look at those guest sheets and do the calculation. The numbers will motivate you into immediate action
If nothing else, act on the fact that your biggest monthly expense, as well as opportunity for growth, might be missed opportunities to do business. Work with your team to get good at this and watch their confidence and car count rise dramatically.
If you need help with managing your sales team, teaching them the what to say and why to say it in order to drive exponentially more traffic to your showroom floor, then start with our 2 day Management by Fire! event. You can learn more and register here.