Congratulations on a Great Year in the Car Business!
Hopefully it was a great year for your dealership, which usually depends on how popular your line of cars was this year. In 2014, most dealers had a good year and we hope you were one of them.
Looking forward into 2015 our main piece of advice for all dealers is to invest in your people. The car business is a business of leads now. Most leads are somehow connected to the internet, your website, other websites, and just the overall internet connection of the public. People spend much of their time living inside their computers on their desk, on their tablet, or with their face glued to their smartphone. Good or bad, the next generation of buyers is even more buried into the screen.
Because car buyers start out as leads, your people need to be great at dealing with leads and that means investing in training and technology. This is a game of numbers now. How many leads can your staff handle? How many can they close? If each salesperson could close just ten percent more leads next year, how would that effect your revenue? Is it worth investing in training and/or technology that will increase your closed deals by ten percent? Don’t expect to do the same old thing next year and magically increase sales.
Take a look at the companies that train salespeople. Look at the companies that help you manage leads better or close leads better, or get you more leads. Give every salesperson a sharper ax and you will chop down more trees. It’s not a coincidence that the football teams with the best-trained and most talented players usually win the games. It’s also not an accident that the teams with the best coaches usually end up in the playoffs or at the championship game. Train everyone including yourself.
If you had a great year, go to San Francisco to NADA in January and sharpen your ax. Better yet, go to NADA and buy a chainsaw. The exhibition booths at NADA are filled with companies that have perfected techniques or technology that will help you increase sales next year. Either you will go, or your competitor will go, and he will learn things that will help him defeat you in sales.
Happy New Year from everyone at Dealer Marketing Magazine!