As part of that calculation, businesspeople must have the ability to analyze the value of the data that they seek. “You’ll need to apply a pinch of knowledge salt to your data,” advises Solvay’s van Zeebroeck. “What really matters is the ability not just to tap into data but to see what is behind the data. Is it a fair representation? Is it impartial?”
When shoppers are ready to buy a new or used vehicle, they’re looking for helpful, specific information. When buyers can’t find incentive data, lease payments and finance offers instantly, they get frustrated and lose trust.
Now that your price negotiating is complete, it is time finalize the transaction. You should never pay cash because if something goes wrong you may have trouble getting your money back. Besides, carrying around large sums of cash is dangerous. You should pay with a credit card if possible or a check of some type (personal, official check, etc.). With a credit card or check you have a paper trail and some recourse available if something goes wrong.
Most salespeople do not sell 25 cars per month, and holding gross on a new cars is virtually impossible these days. So at every dealership there’s what’s known as a minimum commission, or “mini deal.” That’s the minimum the dealership will pay you when a car deal makes no money. At my dealership, a mini deal is worth $125. Now think about that.
We’ve stood on a soapbox before about social media in relation to car dealers, and we also believe that online marketing is often missed out on in car dealer circles, but don’t get the wrong idea. We’re not telling car dealer owners that they shouldn’t be using traditional marketing as well, just that they need to broaden their marketing scopes, or fall behind other dealers who are willing to take the risk and learn about this new online strategy that’s exploding into marketing.
In the US, for example, the Honda Accord, once among the darling of American buyers, has dropped from being sixth-most popular car to ninth in the space of one year. In Europe, the Opal Astra, a family compact car, has seen sales drop a whopping 15% in the last year.
However, if none of these factors cause angst or concern, and if you have the ability to sell anything to anyone, you could become a car salesman. It would be wise to keep in mind, however, that a car salesman is not only trying to sell a vehicle, he is also competing against everyone else with whom he works. It is not a friendly environment, but for those who possess the needed talents, it can be lucrative.
Managing all the review sites your dealership appears on can be a serious process, but if you cultivate your online reputation properly you can, in essence, grow the size of your market. Because, “Car buyers are willing to drive farther to reach dealerships with positive online reviews—24 percent said they would drive 30 miles to a dealer with positive reviews, 15 percent said they would drive as far as 40 miles, while nearly one-third (31 percent) said they would drive 50 miles or more.”4If 70 percent of online car buyers are willing to drive 30 miles or more for a dealership with good online reviews, how many customers do you think you could gain from a positive online reputation? How many do you think you would lose with a bad one?
Once you’ve gotten used to sending email offers and posting on social media, use a tracking software to see where your leads and conversions are coming from. If a majority of your new customers found you through Facebook, you may want to step up social media efforts as opposed to spending your budget on under-performing platforms. By tracking engagement on all marketing platforms, you’ll have a better idea of where to invest your budget, leading to a greater ROI over time.
But it’s not just the fact that newspapers top the list of America’s disappearing industries–it’s the fact that digital is cheaper, easier, and more effective in generating ROI. With platforms like Adwords and Facebook Ads, you can custom tailor an unlimited number of unique ads to target different keywords, demographics, and locations. You just can’t do that with a newspaper (or other forms of traditional marketing for that matter).