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Opening up a car dealership: the checklist

In the United States of America there are more than 250 million registered cars on the roads and more than 200 million licensed drivers. This means that there are drivers who have more than one vehicle.

If you were to check the numbers it may look like every citizen already has a car, or is looking for one. The fact is that every licensed driver has their own car, or they co-own it with someone, being them their parents, partner or business associate. But people need car dealerships in order to purchase their vehicles. This can prove to be a profitable business, but before opening up your own dealership you should carefully check the steps of the process. Considering that nowadays the Internet offers you the possibility to sell almost everything online, you have the advantage of making your firm visible to the wide public.

If you decided that you want to become your own boss, then this article will guide you through the steps you have to thick on your checklist.

Before matching vehicles to people

There are some pre-operating things you have to write down on your checklist. It is important to check all of the following steps because they make the difference between a successful business and one that heads straight to bankruptcy.


Check the market

You should check if there is a high request for cars on the local market, because if there is not, you do not have chances to make profit. Do research and find out if people from your area prefer to buy new or used cars, because it will help you establish your business plan. Assess the demand before investing money. If you have in mind where the dealership will be established you should check the number of vehicles sold in that area during last year. Nowadays you have the possibility to sell your cars online, and this means that you can expand the area where you sell cars to the entire state. In case you want to sell cars both on site and online, then you should invest in creating a website for your firm.

Tip: Check if there is a certain model or brand that sells frequently.


Estimate your profit

Every business plan includes a part where you estimate the income you will have if you will sell vehicles through your dealership. There are dealerships that struggle to exist, and there are profitable dealerships. Your goal is to be part of the second category. When you check the demand for cars from your area, you should know the exact number of cars that are sold per year, and estimate what percentage form that number you can cover. You will have to also estimate the profit every model of car brings and make an idea on the income you will have after a year of running your dealership.

Tip: Offer on sale vehicles that are purchased frequently in the area.


Identify your possible customers

The clients are the ones who influence the success of a business, so it is essential to identify them before opening up the dealership. If you plan to offer on sale a certain brand or model of cars, then you should do research to find out how the average owner of that type of car looks like. This step is important because it will help you design the advertising and marketing campaigns you will create when you will start your business.

Tip: Do not make assumptions, base your decisions on data


Find out more about auto dealer surety bond

The car dealer surety bond is a type of insurance you will have to get if you want to run this type of business. If you get this bond you will show your clients that they can trust working with you because you are a reliable dealer. The  auto dealer bond protects your customers from dishonest actions made by you. Every person who wants to sell cars as part of their business has to get an auto dealer bond. Every state has a certain number of minimum cars you can sell without having a bond, but considering that you want to open up a dealership, you definitely need one.

Tip: Find a professional auto dealer surety provider


Running your dealership

Hire your staff

You may have the perspective and perseverance to make your dealership a successful business, but you cannot do it alone. You need to hire professionals, because your team is the one that works with your clients. Finding the right team is the factor that will influence your company’s evolution.

Tip: Hire only experienced salesmen


Promotion is a must

Nowadays people are adepts of modern types of advertising. Very few people read the newspaper when they want to buy a car, or if they read it, they read the digital form. Nowadays online marketing is the one that influences the success of a business. People prefer to search online when they want to buy something, or when they need to find out more about a certain company. You should promote your company in the local online classifieds, and place ads on social media.

Tip: Hire a company specialised in creating marketing campaigns.


Do not waste time

A great mistake would be to have multiple roles in your business. You are the manager of the company, and it is enough. Hire professionals to create your marketing content, to sell your cars, and to offer customer service. You should check the local rules because you have to make sure that you keep up with the taxes. For every vehicle you will sell you will have to pay taxes, so focus your attention on meeting laws and regulations. The greatest mistake you can do is to forget to accomplish your administrative duties. You are the only one who can make the business function perfectly, because you know what your goals are. Do not waste time on cleaning the floors, offer directions and manage the company. Your employees will do the rest of the job.

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Tags: Opening, a, car, checklist, dealership:, the, up


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