As an agent, it’s up to you to ensure your dealerships’ sales teams are 100% confident in their sales approach to customers. Too many times there have been situations where a customer has given a firm commitment to purchase, and yet the sales team will have lost the deal once the paperwork is pulled out and the negotiating begins. No sales team is perfect, but there are ways to work around the three most common and costliest mistakes they can make while working a deal.
- Salespeople Lose Control of the Sale
To rephrase this, almost all salespeople never had any control to begin with. Your team’s first two to three minutes will determine the outcome with customers. Controlling the sale starts with the greeting and first few questions. If your salespeople can’t control the conversation’s direction from there, they will have an extremely difficult time negotiating. In short, by asking questions, they control the selling process.
Oddly enough, many salespeople don’t know how to ask questions, but the customers certainly come prepared with plenty of them. From pricing questions to car characteristic questions, the list is endless with their curiosity. Don’t let your team become an answering machine; encourage them to steer the conversation into their favor.
- Salespeople Try to Take Shortcuts
It happens too many times. Salespeople will try to take a shortcut by taking a deal to the desk only to work their manager harder than they work the customer. Instead of doing it right the first time, they go to the manager with no signed paperwork or real commitment and tell him/her they can’t get the customer to commit. If your team doesn’t understand the right way to work a deal, offer them training and resources to help them comprehend the correct way. Cut out the shortcut; teach them to close the deal first and then negotiate. If the vehicle was “sold” or closed properly, negotiation becomes extremely difficult.
- Salespeople Focus Their Selling and Negotiating Tactics on Price
Even though it’s brought up on every deal, price is not what customers buy and almost never their primary concern. In fact, on a JD Power survey, price didn’t even make the top 10 list of what buyers want. On another JD Power survey, price is #16 on customers’ priority list after they find a vehicle they want to purchase. Mastering the art of how to work with price is crucial to car-selling success. Below are three things your teams need to learn to do with price:
- Bypass. Your teams need to learn to answer customer’s questions like, “How much is it?” and get back to following the sales process. Bypassing is very easy once they learn how to ask the right questions.
- Rephrase. When you get a price objection when you’re closing, you need to rephrase their objection to budget for multiple reasons. That’s easy, too, if you ask the right question.
- Refocus. Although deals are worked on price, a customer’s decision to buy will always be based on their budget. Your sales teams have to ask the right questions to refocus from price back to terms.
Negotiation is the lifeblood of your dealership’s prosperity. Help set your sales team up for success by avoiding these common mistakes in negotiation. Your dealerships will see the benefits, your sales team will make more sales, and you’ll be the hero.