Go Forward with Geoff Fitchett
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  • Expertise and advice

    Question:

    Hi Geoff, don’t know whether you remember me? I used to work for a well-known Korean franchise dealer in the South East and we had training in some really nice hotel in the Cotswolds. That got me started in my career which has been good so far. I now manage a small, exotic used car operation and I have two needs. One is to do with my one and only salesman and the other is about sales. I’m getting a lot of people who say they’ll travel hundreds of miles to save a few quid, using the internet to shop for a similar car to mine and then vanishing. I find I’m giving all the expertise and advice and then never seeing them again. Your thoughts? Cheers, hope you’re well, it would be great to catch up on the number below, or the email.

    Neil Bakewell

    Answer:

    Hi Neil, That would have been the Manor Hotel, Moreton-In-Marsh, lovely place. Every used car is unique so my first question is what are they buying instead of yours; older, higher mileage, newer, cleaner? Whatever it is, it’s not exactly the same. If yours is more expensive it needs to be better in some way, or your service must make up for any price difference. If neither is true, or those factors are not ‘sold’ the customer will be right to go elsewhere. Be sure you are making the most of your reconditioning and your aftersales promise. Do a tour of your premises and introduce the customer to your technician (assuming you have one), your admin person or anyone else you have in your team. Explain what you’ve done in reconditioning and preparing the car and share your knowledge about what to look out for on the particular model of interest; these last points will be like mini cautionary tales and will build trust in you and your car. When it comes to preparation standards, aim high – be the best. Keep an eye on the competition by Googling for similar cars to yours and seeing what’s out there. Collect some details about the other cars so you understand the choices the customer has available and without running them down, be sure to present yours favourably against the main alternatives. Of course, you must also be competitive. I’m assuming you and your cars are fair value, but if not get competitive. If your cars do plenty of test-drives but stay in your showroom, you’ll know something is amiss. Finally, be confident, cool and look after your customer’s needs. Do all this and you’ll get the rewards you deserve. I’ll email you directly about your salesperson so we can be discrete.

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