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Is your dealership's 'contact made' rate for Internet leads in the 65-75% range? If not, here are three things to focus on that will help. Josh Vajda, Direc...

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Comment by Gillon S. Johannson on September 19, 2012 at 3:07pm

Great video Josh, and I love the three points. Here's my issue though: I believe we have Process, Effort, and Great Message coming out of our ears. I am respected and even sought after, but never can I imagine 65-75% contact rate. So who/what do I blame this on? Myself? The Leads? My people?

I know how hard I work, my message is straight, true and transparent, with dignity and respect. My process is honed from years of paying attention...I'm having a tough time even believing those numbers. There's no way I'm that far out in left field...No way!

I take this all pretty seriously, and I gotta' tell ya' this is pretty upsetting. Indeed...

Comment by Josh Vajda on September 13, 2012 at 12:56pm

Thanks for the replies, gents...William, one of the challenges I've had with the "most sales come in the first 2 weeks" is that it doesn't jive with registration data showing purchases after lead submission (I've seen multiple distributions, all showing heavy purchase volume from 30-90 days after lead submission). It would make sense that a dealer would see most of their sales in the first few days after the lead's receipt if they're only following up for a short period of time, but with a 10-15% aggregate closing % for all leads, 85%+ didn't buy from them at all. Those customer (largely) still buy cars within the 90-day timeframe...

Comment by William Phillips on September 12, 2012 at 6:02pm

 agree with most of this and I wish I had Josh's speaking voice!!!   My 10 years of researching these issues (and contact ratios first) has yielded the following.  With a solid out bound contact pattern that is very agressive, almost all of my dealers achieve a 75 to 95% contact ratio.  My stats also say that if you dont touch them in the first 5 days you will most likely wont sell them. You may sell them as far out as 90 days, but what you get there isn't worth ruining what can be gotten now.  Most of the sales made got touched in 5 days, sold in 10 to 15. Wasting resources  (a sales persons time) chasing the minority of the business because its techno-friendly to chase is dumb if it costs you the stuff thats buying now. For the record most dealers do this because well meaning consultants only study poor processes to pull stats from.  Mystery shop more and watch.  Its completely eye opening.  

Comment by Philip McLerran on September 12, 2012 at 3:12pm

Definitely three things I've been preaching to my Internet Manager's for years. Works great for the ones with the two things I can't teach. Drive and desire.

Comment by Michael Cirillo on September 12, 2012 at 2:48pm

Great information. Thanks for sharing Josh.

Comment by Ralph Paglia on September 12, 2012 at 2:41pm

After setting up many dealership BDC's and Internet Sales Teams, and managing several for quite a few years, I can attest to the validity of Josh's guidance.  Driving higher customer contact rates is more a function of process and communication aptitude than it is a reflection of "Lead Quality".  I cannot even guess how many times a sales professional has marked a lead as being "Invalid" or "Does Not Answer" and when I pulled it up in a CRM tool, dialed the customer from my cell phone, the customer picked it up and we began a conversation... They being still in the market for a vehicle.  Custom Contact Ratios are amongst the most important measurements in evaluating process execution and employee performance, regardless of how your dealership is organized, or who is responsible for following up on leads.

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