A younger man I mentor from time to time was talking to me about managing salespeople. A mutual friend from back in the day likes to say, “Tank was bad at walking customers”.
The rule on every lot is, nobody walks (customer) until at least two people have talked to them. If you are not getting anywhere, you “turn them through the desk (manager)”. Was I a frequent violator of this rule? Yes I was!
As I explained to the young man, few people in the car business know who the customer is. Very few sales are cash deals. The customer is the lender and the lender will only “buy” the deal if the structure of the deal meets their requirements.
I was fairly good at qualifying and wouldn’t waste my time, or anyone else’s, on someone who couldn’t finance steam off a hot dog. Was I always right? Of course not, but had a high batting average.
A professional will track their performance as follows.
How many “ups”? How many “ups” went on a test drive? How many test drives resulted in a write up? How many write ups resulted in a sale? You should frequently be looking at these numbers and percentages to see where you may be weak and need to improve.
Historically, I made one sale per 4.2 “ups”. I’ve read the nation average is around one in eight.
The best salesman I ever knew was Dirty Al Imhoff who averaged one sale per three “ups”. He would spend hours with a customer. If the female was attractive………….. At the end of any given month I would sell more cars than Al, and my “wash out” check would be bigger. So who was the better salesman?
As a manager I encouraged the “pro’s” not to waste time on losers. Of course, if you were on my crew you were a pro.
The lesson I offer to the young man? Work smarter and know where the money comes from.
As always, some who read this will be, “Yeah, but” brothers and sisters. That is ok, just keep doing what you are doing. Or, pull your head out of………… and start making money.