When people arrive in your showroom, they have a limited agenda. I think it is generally well accepted that they are further down the ‘buying journey’ than pre-internet days, and it really is time we stopped harping on about that. It is a fact and we now need to be much more focussed on what prospects want and expect than where we think they are in the process.

shutterstock_85120120Typically when buying a car prospects are looking for the right Car and/or Deal, the right Dealership to buy from, and hopefully the right Salesperson to sell it to them.

They do not always accomplish this, but in an ideal world that would be the culmination of the buying process.

Points of influence

Selling cars, like selling anything else, comes down to points of influence. In other words, where can you have the most influence on the buying decision? What factors actually determine whether or not your prospect will decide favourably to purchase from you?

To identify this we need to consider what the prospects agenda is when they contact or enter our business.

Research suggests the prospective customer would like to achieve three things. Firstly, they would like the opportunity to look at the product options available and maybe try them, secondly they want to know what their cars is worth and thirdly, and ultimately, how much will it cost to change? That maybe ‘Price to change’ ‘Monthly Payments’ or a Cash figure, but in essence “what’s the Deal?”

Added to this is an acceptance that at some point they will need to meet with someone from the Dealership (so we can add this in as well).

Of course from our point of view, we would like the opportunity to explain why you should buy from us, so let us add this in too, and this is the only part of the process that we own.

Five Key Presentations

Therefore, my suggestion is you focus on 5 Key Presentations:

  1. Your Receive and Welcome

  2. Presenting your USP as a Company

  3. The Part Exchange process

  4. Your presentation of Products and Services

  5. The Negotiation Process

handshakeNo.1 should separate you from your competitors and should be consistent every-time, not just a “Hey how are you, how can I help?” – but a real welcome to the showroom, or pitch which must include the words ‘Welcome to.…’ and one that moves the conversation beyond “I’m just looking thanks.…”

No.2 may need some thought but should be an upfront presentation of what you can offer as a business to separate you from the competition. What is your competitive advantage (not price), it may be your aftersales service, it may be your used car valuation process, it could be you have a loyalty scheme for customers, perhaps offer some sort of delivery process that is different – anything to differentiate you from the competition (preferably proven in writing).

No.3 should be transparent and help to build trust in your process. Remember, psychologically this is the start of your negotiation even though you shouldn’t talk numbers here.

red-car-shineyNo.4 is your sales pitch and this has to build as much desire as possible and culminate in the close “so subject to the numbers is this the right car for you” (or something very similar).

No.5 is where it often goes pear-shaped. Usually because you get there too quickly or because it is too complicated. Keep your negotiation simple, Close the New / Used (but I don’t know anyone who says they bought a ‘used house’) Car first, then the part exchange. Remember until you have a commitment to buy you have nothing worth negotiating on.

Personally, I would recommend each of the above five elements be defined and scripted to make sure they are consistently delivered to every prospect.


Focus on delivering what your prospects want and earn the right to ask for their business.

Over the next few weeks I will expand on each of the above points of influence with hints and tips on how to implement them in your sales process.

Until then…

Good Luck and Good Selling!


And remember if I can help in any way please do get in touch.