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If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you as well? Is that what your mother always asked you growing up? When caught making a mistake or doing wrong, children will always look to point the finger elsewhere. They’ll blame it on a friend, a neighbor, a bully, or an instigator. They were just following someone else’s lead… even if they knew it was wrong. That’s their excuse.
Dealerships around the nation are doing wrong and using their competitors as the excuse. It’s called “the destination bump” and it is when dealers choose to withhold the destination charge from their online pricings and, essentially, bump the customer for the legitimate fee when they arrive. (Let’s face it… unless you’re new, you knew what I meant when I said “destination bump”, but I thought I’d defined it anyway.)
We know it’s not right to lure in customers under false pretenses, but dealerships are doing it nonetheless. Why? “Well… it’s because the dealer down the street does it.” They follow suit because they believe it helps them remain competitive in the market. This should no longer be an acceptable excuse. Dealers recognize that price is important to customers so they think that if a local dealer shows a lower price, they might get the business instead. And that may be the truth. On the flipside, we must realize that your competition may be showing the customer a lower price, but a better way to describe what they’re doing is luring a customer in under false pretenses. They may indeed “get” the business instead, but they certainly aren’t trying to earn their business.
In today’s competitive marketplace, I challenge you to try and earn business the right way rather than playing into the hand of archaic, cruel marketing devices that won’t score you anything long-term other than a bad reputation. Knowing that ratings and reviews are such an important factor for driving traffic to your websites and dealerships, we shouldn’t give into these stereotypical games solely because it is “the way of the world” around your dealership.
So… If your friends jumped off a bridge, would you? Sadly, some still will. But they’ll be jumping into a mix of bad reviews, worse ratings, and untrusting customers. It isn’t so cool if that happens. Now who’s to blame?