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The Selling Process…has it changed?

Does your dealership have a BDC or Internet Sales Department?  When appointments show up to the dealership, is there a set process to handle these customers?  Let me let this thought process for a second…

Ok, so right now you are probably realizing that you do have these departments yet they are under performing.  Perhaps you have trained your sales staff in the basic methods of the road to the sale or you might have just hired a few “green peas” and thrown them out on the floor to learn as they go.  Sound familiar?

Here is a fact: Over 90% of consumers go online before they walk into a dealership.
Here is another fact: In order for the showroom to be packed, traffic needs to be generated through appointments.  Walk in customers do not just walk in like they used to.

When a BDC appointment comes in, how are the customers being greeted?  Are they still saying, “Can I help you?”  If this is still happening, your dealership is in trouble.  The proper way to handle a proper meet and greet is as follows: “Welcome to ABD Motors, my name is Stan and you are? Great meet you.  Are you here for a VIP appointment with our guest relations department?” Qualify the information.  One you know what is going on make sure to inform management and the BDC that their appointment is here.  Now continue with your road to the sale starting with logging the proper information into the CRM while simultaneously building really good rapport.  Make sure to read the notes in the CRM that are already there so you can build that common ground.  This is just the beginning of the process.

Are your sales consultants prepared to handle the modern customer?  The modern customer shows up with an iPad and/or iPhone.  They do not need to walk in printouts because they have the information in a digital format.  These customers ask questions to which they already have an answer right at their finger tips.  At the same time while working with your dealership they are also reading reviews about your dealership as well as others.

So what has changed?  Not a lot really.  The real change is the quickness of the transparency that dealers need to have.  The processes that we have been taught over the years still apply to the selling professional.  However, the modern day selling professional needs to be armed with knowledge of how to use certain consumer websites to pull factual information; sell the value of the car as well as the dealership’s online reputation.  This modern day professional needs to be able to take out their smart phone at delivery and film a customer testimonial as well as take a picture of the customer with their new vehicle.  There are so many great apps available on mobile phones that can really help a sales professional do amazing things that will enable a smooth, efficient, and powerful road to the sale process.

If anyone has questions on how to achieve sales greatness by using the modern road to the sale process, please feel free to contact me at

Views: 154

Tags: automotive internet sales, automotive sales, automotive sales training, automotive training, bdc, dealer etraining, mobile, road to the sale, sales process, stan sher


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Comment by Bill Cosgrove on May 1, 2013 at 1:13pm

I agree Stan that you need to be prepared for the modern customer and how a sale gets done should not changed. A good salesperson will always stay on top of their game and be able to adapt to the situation.


Comment by Stan Sher on September 26, 2012 at 12:03pm


I agree.  You do get people that maybe will get defensive.  The whole point is to be professional and welcoming towards the "guest".  There are various ways that you can do an effective "meet and greet".  At the end of the day, as long as you are not just being careless and saying, "May I help you?" or "Are you being taken care of?".  I want sales people to not only be professional but also get in rhythm to have proper communication and have effective CRM skills (not just the software).

Comment by Jerry Thibeau on September 26, 2012 at 11:49am


Don't take this the wrong way, but I do not like this line: "“Welcome to ABD Motors, my name is Stan and you are?" 

"I am just looking" will be a common reply.  People are defensive when it comes to sales people.  The customer will give their name when they are good and ready, don't pry for the name.  I would say this instead, "Hi, welcome to XYZ Motors, my name is Jerry, are you here to look at new or pre-owned vehicles today (with a smile of course)? 

Asking an A/B choice question is less likely to get the I am just looking response.

Comment by Ashley Lopez on September 26, 2012 at 8:44am

Thank you both Stan and Benjamin! I apologize we didn't get to meet up at AutoCon... I def plan on staying in touch with you guys and @brianpasch and @ralphpaglia ---I've pulled away with so much education from this community, not just in automotive marketing but information I will keep all my life.  Thank you!

Comment by Benjamin D. Freedman on September 25, 2012 at 4:32pm

Ashley -

I am glad we spoke. You have a genuine passion for the industry and will go far. I encourage you to keep in touch with people like Ralph Paglia, Brian Pasch, and myself. Together as a community, we can all grow from each other and raise to a level higher than we imagined. And as always, if you have any questions about anything, please feel free to call me. Our clients (many of whom were at AutoConn) will speak highly about PCG Consulting, Marc McGurren, and myself.

Comment by Stan Sher on September 25, 2012 at 3:38pm

Thanks for your response.  Sales people need to be prepared and understand the buying habits so that they can be better closers.  How come we did not catch up at AutoCon?  You made time for Ben Freedman :( but not me lol

Comment by Ashley Lopez on September 25, 2012 at 9:48am

So true about the Modern Customer Stan! We have our salespeople snap a photo of our customers at delivery and with their permission we post the photo to Facebook---they love it and most of them will share the photo with their friends and's a great way to spread the online reputation of our dealership!

I love the "Guest Relations" welcome as well...we don't have a "BDC" per say but we have our internet sales department and this is a great way to greet customers.

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