One big mistake sales people make, and quite frankly, a lot of sales people make; they change their dealership sales process with each and every customer.
You should have a process that you use time and time again with the intentions of forever making your sales process better. When you have a true sales process that you use with every customer, you have a tangible process you can improve on. If you change the sales process with every customer, than you have nothing to improve, and that will cost you deals!
This dealership sales process I have created and used is customer centric, time centric, and is designed to close a sale in the shortest time possible. This sales process is designed to figure out your customers true needs, this way you can close the deal the first time and create customers for life.
My Dealership Sales Process in a nutshell:
No matter if you’re taking a walk-in lead, a phone up, or following up with an internet lead, you have to make a good first impression. When you walk up to your customer, answer the phone, or call a prospect make sure you bring energy and tonality to the conversation.
Don’t be just another boring jack they meet everywhere else. Get them excited to be at your dealership and show them you care by giving them your attention.
One big mistake sales people make during the introduction is they want to talk news, sports, and weather and think this is building rapport. Don’t be that sales person! Build true rapport with your customers by showing them you’re an expert in your field and focus on the reason they stopped at your dealership… to get their needs met with your units!
Introduce yourself with confidence and say something like, “Welcome to Dealership Name. What can I help you with today?”
This intro is short and sweet but it tells your customers that you’re ready to help them with whatever they came to the dealership for and they will respect that.
They will reply back with some of the reasons they came to your dealership or they will reply back with objections but either way your response is the same, ask them, “Have you ever bought from our dealership before?”
The reason you’re asking them this is because you want them to know the buying process at your dealership and you’re setting them up for the next step in your sales process.
- Setting Intentions Early
If they say yes or no, you will go into the dealership sales process by saying something like, “Here at Dealership Name we like to make sure our customers get the right unit the first time and we price our units to sell so we don’t haggle and negotiate. First, we sit our customers down and learn exactly what they’re going to be using their unit for and what they need in their new unit. Once I learn more of what you will be using their unit for, I will then be able to show you a couple different units that will fit your exact needs. Next, we will go out to the lot and I will walk you through the units that will best fit your needs. After we walk through those units we will go inside and I will show you on paper what those units will cost if you wanted to start camping today. If we find the perfect unit for you and the numbers line up with your needs, then we will buy it. If I don’t have the right unit today, then no big deal, we will just keep looking till we find the perfect unit. Does that sound fair enough?”
Most of the time your customer will say, “Yes that sounds fair,” because it is a fair process.
For the times your customer says, “No, that don’t sound fair,” you will want to loop back and explain why this is your process.
You might say something like, “I hear what you’re saying but the reason we do it this way is because we have hundreds of units on our lot and not all of them will fit your needs. If you allow me to learn more about what you’re looking to accomplish with your next unit, I will be able to show you units that will fit your exact needs so you don’t have to walk around the lot wasting your time. Does that make sense?”
Most of the time your customer will say, “Yes that makes sense,” because who in the world wants to waste their own time? By telling your customer why you need to take them to your office and interview them and explaining why it will benefit your customer it will get them to trust you more and it will get them lower their defenses.
- Explanation of buying process
The reason you are explaining your buying process and setting your intentions early (them buying the perfect unit) is because you want them to be comfortable with the process and know before hand what they’re about to experience. People don’t like the unknown and by telling them the process before you take them through it, your customers will be more at ease and they will subconsciously agree to go down the path you want them to.
The truth is, this sales process is fair for the customer and the sales person and only an irrational person would say otherwise.
This dealership sales process is designed to get the customer the unit that fits their exact needs and is a quick and efficient process for a sales person, because in sales, time is money.
By having a fair process for both the sales person and the customer you’re showing that you’re an expert in your field and that you can get them what they want without giving them the run around like the amateurs at other dealerships are giving them.
By asking, “Sound fair enough?”
You’re making your customer agree with you that your sales process is fair and at that moment they subconsciously agree to let you take them down that process. This is a huge advantage because now you can take them down your sales process with little push back from your customers.
After your customer agrees that your sales process is fair, you will want to take them to the office that you will try to close them in, and not to the table in the middle of the show room.
Taking your customer to your office is important because you don’t want the first time they’re in your office to be when you’re closing them.
By taking your customer to your office for the interview they will feel more at ease with being in your office. This will help you because when you bring them back to close them, they won’t feel that “O shit, we are going to the box” feeling. Your customers will see your office as a just another place in the dealership and that will make them more comfortable in the close.
Bottom line, interview them in your office!
The first thing I like to talk about with my customers is if they have a trade or not. The reason I like to start at a trade is because you can learn a lot about your customers from their trade.
By asking questions around the who, what, when, where, why, and how method you can get a lot of good info from your customers, ask them questions like:
- How much did you pay for your trade brand new?
- How much do you think your trade is worth?
- What things do you wish you could of changed about your trade?
- What things did your trade do that you want the new RV to do?
- How long have you had your trade?
- What is the monthly payment for your trade?
- How do you use your trade now?
By asking questions in this fashion you will learn a lot of information that you will need to know to close the sale. You will learn what they paid in the past which can give you an idea of what they can afford today. You can learn what their monthly payments are/where so you don’t show them too much of a unit. You can learn what they hated about their trade and what about their trade didn’t meet their needs and help them fix these issues.
The list goes on for what you can learn from their trade so make sure to ask a lot of questions!
- Who, What, When, Where, Why, How
After you learn everything you need to know about their trade, you will want to use the who, what, when, where, why, and how method to ask them questions about how they will be using their unit and why they want a unit. Knowing your customers true wants is the key to finding your customer the perfect unit and getting them to buy today so don’t skip out on the interview!
Ask your customers questions like:
- Why do you want a new unit?
- What will you be doing with your unit?
- Who will all be going with you and using the unit?
- What places do you want to go with your unit?
- How will you be using your unit?
- What do you want to do while using your unit?
- When will you be using your unit?
These questions are opened ended and are designed to get your customers talking about their true wants and needs so you can sell towards their rewards. Customers won’t buy your product till their perceived value of your unit is more then what they’re willing to pay for it, so you have to build value!
The only way to add value to your customers lives with a unit is by selling towards the reasons they want a unit.
In my experience the real reasons people want a new unit is because:
- They want to build memories with their kids before they get older.
- They want to travel with their spouse and see the United States.
- They want a weekend get away they can hang out with their family while they’re not working.
- They are having problems with their current unit and it is not meeting their needs.
- Times have changed and they need a new unit to meet their new needs
- The unit they’re in is giving them troubles and they need something new
There are many different reasons customers want a new unit so make sure you ask them enough questions to figure out their true reasons and don’t just sell them brochure language.
No customer is buying your unit because of the new features or power tongue jack. They are buying a unit because they want to travel, go on adventures, and create memories with their families. Show your customers how your unit can be the vehicle to help them do this and they are much more likely to buy a unit from you.
- Get Answers To Hard Questions
Some sale people will let their customers control the whole process and every conversation. They will ask them what their credit score is and the customer will say, “Oh, its great don’t worry about it,” and the sales person will just keep moving forward. Or you may ask them what their budget is for a unit and they might say, “Money isn’t a big deal I just want to look at some units,” and again the sales person will let them control the sale.
As a sales person you have to be willing to take control over the sale and you have to get answers to your hard questions. When a customer blows off your questions, learn how to ask again till you get your answer, because that is controlling the conversation.
For example, if a customer tells you, “My credit score is awesome, don’t worry about it.” I will typically come back jokingly with, “Nice, so you have what, a 550 credit score?”
Most of the time the customer will say something like, “No way man, I have a 750, I got that good credit.”
By getting the answer to a harder question, it helps build trust and rapport with your customers. If you let them brush off your questions they will have control of the sale and when you try to close the deal they will brush you off as well, so make sure you’re getting answers to your questions.
- Don’t show too many units
A big mistake a lot of sale people make is showing a customer too many units. I have even seen some sales people let their customers walk them around the lot showing them every unit their customers walk in to. This is not the way to do it!
Don’t waste your time or your customers time and make sure you interview your customers before letting them walk the lot or showing them units, because without a good interview it will be a lot harder to close the deal.
After your interview is where product knowledge will come into place because you need to pick out 2–3 units that will fit your customers exact needs and walk them through only those units.
When you give customers too many decisions they will start to get confused and it will paralyze them from being able to make a decision today.
If you do a good interview and go more then surface level with your customers in that interview; you should have the information you need to show them the perfect unit.
If you end up showing your customers the wrong units over and over again, it is because your interview process is weak and you need to get better at interviewing your customers.
Your goal is to get to a point where you can listen to your customers true needs, show them 2–3 units, and get them to close on one of those units in the shortest time possible.
- Feature & Benefit Towards Customer Rewards
When showing your products, don’t just spit out what you read in the brochure and make sure you’re selling towards your customers rewards.
What this means is don’t just tell people that your unit has a power awning. Tell them something like, “This RV has a big power awning, so that when you and your family are ready to enjoy those meals you talked about. You will also have a nice big shaded area right outside of your RV to eat under. Your family will create a lot of memories under that awning.”
By giving the features along with benefits tailored at your customers rewards they will connect more with the purchase and start to see your unit as a vehicle that can solve their problems and help them do what they want to do.
Customers don’t care about the features if they don’t add rewards and value to their life. For this reason, make sure you’re selling the features along with the benefits your customers get from your units and how it will add value to their life.
Remember a unit is a want, not a need. Sell towards peoples wants and you will close more unit sales!
- Trial Close Throughout Demo’s
While you’re showing your units, be sure to use trial closes during your demo.
What this means is to ask your customers throughout the demo if they want to buy that unit. Some sales people get in the habit of always showing 3 units when they wanted to buy number 2 and it might cost you some sales.
If you use a trial close on the 1st unit by asking, “Is this the perfect unit,” and the customer answers with, “Yes.” Move them to the next step and take them to your office.
When a customer is ready to purchase, you don’t want to continue to show them more units because it will only make things harder and confuse your customer.
Remember you’re the expert and the reason you’re showing these specific units is because you know they will fit your customers needs, so if they want to buy the first unit you show them, write them up on it!
Showing more units then you have to will only hurt your sales so use trial closes often to learn what unit is the right one for your customers and then close the deal!
Some trial closes:
- Is this the unit you want to buy?
- Want to see what this unit would cost to own?
- Want to see the numbers on this unit?
When a customer is ready to move to the next step, take them to your desk and move to the write up.
- 100% Write Ups
One goal you should have as a sales person is to write up 100% of your customers. For every customer lead, internet lead, e-mail lead, whatever kind of lead you’re getting, you should send a write up to every customer.
The fact is, without a write up, a sales person will never make a sale. You will have some sales people show unit after unit and never get their customers to paper and it is a waste of everyone’s time. By using this dealership sales process and setting your intentions early, your customers will be ready for you to show them the numbers and will be happy to sit down with you.
For the customers that give you objections, a good way to get them to look at the numbers is by explaining,”I know this unit will fit your needs and before you can make an educated purchase on any unit you need to know what it will cost you. Let’s take a look at the numbers for this unit, this way you will know exactly what this unit will cost you so you will have all the information you need to make a decision. Sound fair enough?”
By showing your customer that you’re helping them make the best decision possible and giving them the information they need to purchase a unit will help them trust you.
If your customers signs the dotted line or they don’t, simply by getting 100% of your customers to the write-up you will sell more units.
- Don’t Go Back To Selling
A big mistake sales people make time and time again, is they go back to selling once as they’re trying to close.
During the write up and as you ask for the sale you should be done selling. The unit they choose to look at numbers for is now the vehicle that can bring them unlimited rewards and solve their problems and that is what you should focus on to close the deal.
Selling features will not help you in the write up or in the close so make sure you’re staying away from selling features and focus on your customer rewards and why they want a unit.
Stop going back to the features and focus on closing the deal!
- Go For 5 No’s
You can expect your customers to tell you, “No, I am not buying a unit today.” or “I am looking at units today because I am buying one in 5–10 years.”
If your customers weren’t giving you these objections then they wouldn’t be normal dealership customer.
However, these objections don’t mean they will not buy from you today if they see enough value in the units you show them.
When a customer tells you, “No, let me think about it” or “No, I am not buying today” I will reply back with,”I hear what you’re saying, but let me ask you this. Do you like the idea of owning a RV and building memories with your family? (or whatever customer reward is strongest)”
By doing this I am putting it back on the customer and showing them that waiting isn’t needed and that their dreams can come true today if they want them to.
As the customer may reply back with,”Yes I would love to own a RV, but its not the right time for a RV and we still need 5 years before we are ready to buy.”
You can loop back and use the same approach,”I hear what you’re saying, but why make your family wait 5 years to build memories when you can start building them now? I know you say you want to wait for 5 years, but if in 5 years you end up regretting that decision you can’t reverse time. If you buy this RV today you can start building memories with your family and living the way you want, and that will be something you will always take with you. Sign right here if you want to start building those memories and buy this RV.”
If your customer still says, “No, I really need to think it over and talk to my significant other and so on.”
You simply loop back by saying, “ I hear what you’re saying but,” and go for 5 Nos.
Getting in the habit of going past the first no and going till you hear at least 5. Doing this will make sure you don’t miss out on sales and it will also make sure your customers understand what they’re missing out on if the choose to not purchase your unit.
If you’ve done your job and the unit you’re showing them is the solution to their problems, who wouldn’t want to start enjoying life in a new unit?
The reason they came to your dealership today, instead of in 5 years is because they’re thinking about it now. For all we know, they won’t even be around in 5 years and them waiting around would be yet another mistake, so make sure they buy the perfect unit today.
Get in the habit of hearing “No”, before your customers will tell you “Yes” and you will sell more units.
- Close Towards Customer Rewards
The biggest mistake you can make is not selling towards your customers rewards. Features of your units will never sell the unit and neither will a low balled price.
The truth is, people come to look at units because they’re looking for something more in their life and often times it has nothing to do with money or your shiny new features.
Customers are looking at units for their own reasons and closing towards these reasons are the best way to get a sale. Remember customers will only buy your unit once their perceived value is more then the amount you’re asking them to pay for it, and the only way to build value in your unit is by selling towards your customers rewards.
Take the time to learn your customers in the interview and ask them who, what, when, where, why, and how they are going to use their unit and take the conversation past surface level.
Ask them, why they want a unit, and why its important to them. Ask them what they’re going to use the unit for and why that is important to them. Continue to ask them questions about their wants so you can close towards those rewards!
- Loop Back
One of the best ways I have been able to overcome objections is by looping back instead of arguing or trying to change my customers mind. As a sales person it is hard to change customers minds, but it is easy to get them to change their own mind.
By asking questions designed around your customer and looping back to make the customer justify why they aren’t making a purchase today will get more of your customers to change their own mind instead of you having to change it for them. Doing this will help you close more deals because it will be the customer making the decision to buy instead of your customer feeling like you’re pushing them into a decision.
To loop back say things like:
- I hear what you’re saying but why continue to wait on buying a unit if you want to build family memories today?
- I hear what you’re saying but why put your dreams on hold if you can by the unit today for $200 a month?
- I hear what you’re saying but why not buy the unit and start traveling with your family like you want to instead of waiting 5 years?
You can use this phrase to help loop back and change your customers minds to show them that buying a unit today is a better decision then waiting to buy one.
Follow Up/Brand Advocate
- Follow Up
Customers are better when they’re customers for life, and the only way to keep them as customers is to follow up with them.
Don’t think that just because you made a sale and the unit is over the curb that your job is done. To ensure your customer comes to you for the next unit and send their Family and Friends to you, follow up with them!
Give them a call a few times after they take delivery and make sure things are still going well for them. Ask them if they have any questions about anything they have uncovered since taking ownership of the unit. You can even help them schedule service or give them a call to remind them of different things they need to know about their unit.
There are many ways to follow up with your customers but by keeping a long standing relationship with your customers it will ensure that 1 unit sale will turn into many.
As more and more customers buy a unit from you, you will start to see more and more customers asking for you. Keep a good follow up process with your new and old customers to ensure great success in your dealership sales!
- Loop Back
Just because your customer purchased a unit from you and are happy campers, don’t mean you shouldn’t loop back with those customers. As your customers get older, and their unit gets older, their needs and wants will change, and who better to help them with their next unit than you?
To ensure that you’re being efficient with all of your customers take them back through the same sales process every now and again. This will make sure you uncover any new needs and wants your customers might have, this way you can make sure the unit they’re in still fitting their needs.
If the unit they’re in is not the perfect unit anymore then take them back through the dealership sales process and learn who, what, when, where, why, and how they will be using the next unit. Rinse, wash and repeat.
- Get Customer Reviews
With all of the digital technology, social media, and search engines we have access to today, it does not make sense to not ask your customers for an honest online review. When your buying customers give an online review they’re telling other people that they can trust you and do business with you, and it will help you increase sales.
People in today’s day and age trust online reviews just as much as they trust their best friend and as a dealership you have to take advantage of this.
Offer your customers a 25% discount to your parts store for an honest Facebook or Google review and make sure you ask all of your customers to review your dealership.
The more online reviews you get, the stronger your online presence will be and the more people will see your dealership as one they can trust. Use the relationships your sales team has with your customers and tell them to ask for reviews.
Most people have a smart phone when they’re shopping for units, so after they purchase, have them pull out their phone and give you a review on Google and/or Facebook. This small practice will help increase your reviews weekly and will lead to more sales.
This is my dealership sales process that I used to close deals and sell a lot of units so I hope it helps your Dealership do the same!