That is the number of dealers an internet customer will visit to purchase a vehicle. Here is my question...How do you make it to where your customers are visiting 1 and not a 1.2? These days it is getting increasingly difficult to bring customers into your showroom without the price and financing already in place. It is obviously difficult to build rapport with a customer over the phone.

What do you need to do to be different?

First, you need to have a team. No, I don't mean just 5-15 salespeople who are responsible for handling internet leads. I'm talking about an actual team. A team of people who not only work well together but who will work for each other. As an Internet Sales Consultant you are not just sitting at your computer answering leads. You are up with a customer on the lot selling that truck, you are outside taking photos or shooting a video for your leads, you are working with your Internet Director or Sales Manager to get the deal from last Saturday done! You are busy. So if we are 5-15 people sitting in a room working for just yourself there are bigger problems with your department than just your responses or your sales tactics. This is the foundation of a great Internet Department. Once your team is in place, move on to the detail and process.

INITIAL RESPONSE - Phone, email and text under 5 minutes...be urgent.. be excited that they are choosing you to be one of the few they would consider buying from.

QUALITY CONTENT - Are we sending the right quote? Are we showing why they should buy from us? Are we being a real human being or a robot?

VALID QUOTE - When we get them on the phone are we doing a needs assessment? Even though they submitted a lead on a specific vehicle they probably still have options and features they are looking for. Be the one that actually asks them questions so that they find the PERFECT vehicle!!

PERSONALIZATION - Are we being personal? i.e. speaking about the fact we have things in common. Are we using their name? Are we being respectful? Are we asking why they chose that vehicle? Family? Work? Pleasure? Business? Are you throwing the ball back? Giving them a reason to respond?

VIDEO - Make it personalized. Include their name and the vehicle they wanted - be funny! Be unique! Be DIFFERENT!

PHOTOS - Be transparent about the vehicle - showcase the features and benefits! Are they looking at a pre-owned vehicle? Are we showing the dent, giving them the CarFax Report? If not, why? They will trust you more when you are being up front, than if they find out later the car is messed up.

FOLLOW-UP - Do not just complete the task to show zero due at the end of the day. Actually follow up! What is the point of putting energy into work when you are not doing it right or are being lazy. How are we leaving our voicemails? Texts? Emails? Are we being robots? Are we just saying "please call me back" or are we giving them a reason to call back?

APPOINTMENTS - Are we confirming with management, are we asking every customer for an appointment, are we assuming the close on the appointment?

CSI - Are we showcasing how we treat customers? Evidence manual?

REVIEWS - Again, are we showing customers how it is better to buy with you than any other dealer/salesperson?

Fact is, a customer will spend on average 16 hours researching to find the perfect vehicle that they want to spend a lot of money on. When we look at the average American, it is the second largest purchase they will ever make. With all that effort and energy to make sure they find what they want, are we going to be lazy in our response? Are we just going to send a template and call twice, leave it, and move on to another prospect?

Who cares if it is low hanging fruit or a coconut at the top. You need to be the absolute best you can be and do it all for every customer.

This weekend I price shopped my competitors and found out they are not what the sales numbers show. They are AVERAGE! So imagine how much you can grow your dealership by holding your people accountable and putting your best face forward!

In the end how do we make it to where our customers are going to 1 dealership and not 1.2? Accountability, effort, attention to detail, and a process that pushes the salesperson to be the best they can be and a process that makes a customer feel comfortable and willing to do business with you!

So, how are you going to change? Are you willing to? Are you able to hold yourself and your team accountable? If the answer is yes, then don't just say it, DO IT!!!

Have a great 2018! and Lets sell some cars!!