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New Female Car Sales Person Seeks Advice on
Getting Her Career Going!

Hello Tony!

My name is April and I am beginning my career as a car salesperson.

I am sometimes amazed at just how informed the consumers are when they come in. As I see it, I am here to ASSIST in the buying process, and I try to not be pushy.

I am a female and bilingual in Spanish, and I just wanted to know if you had any tips for me or for women in general who are in the field.


April B.

My Response to This Email:

Hi April,

The most important tip I can give you April is to always be honest with your customers.

As you learn the business you will find that there are many instances where you will be tempted to be dishonest with your customers. You will be tempted to twist the truth or leave out something that you are aware of. You will be tempted to tell the customer what they want to hear.

Don't do it!

I realize that you have to work within the confines of whatever selling system your dealership has in place, and you have to take instructions from your Sales Manager. Just don't let the system or the Sales Manager encourage you to tell your customers things that aren't true.

When I worked as a car salesman I actually lost deals for being honest with customers! Where it really gets sticky is when there is a trade-in involved and of course the customer always thinks it's worth more than it really is. Some people will really get ticked off at you for not giving them what they think their trade-in is worth.

To be successful selling cars you need to do the following things:

  1. Consult with your customer to find out what they are looking for in a vehicle, a price, their trade-in, financing and so forth. The more information you have the better the chances are that you will be able to sell them a vehicle.

  2. You've got to get them landed on a vehicle that meets their needs and sparks an emotional response from them.

  3. Once you get that far you have to ask the customer some kind of closing question such as "If we can agree on price are you ready to buy this vehicle today?" Word it in a way that you are comfortable with. It's important to nail them down in this way.

    I know you mentioned that your job is to "assist" the customer in the buying process, and that's true, but you must also take control of the buying process by guiding your customer through the various steps involved in the sale. You must do this gently and without the customer actually realizing that you are guiding them. In other words it must seem natural to them.

    If you don't do this you will never close any sales, because the customers first reaction is to get a price and leave. You have to slow them down and take charge in a nice way.

    There's a fine line that you must walk, because you must be honest and maintain your integrity, while at the same time controlling the sales process.

  4. If the customer answers "yes" to your question write up the deal and negotiate the price according to however your Sales Manager wants you to.

  5. If they say "no" then you have to find out why they are not yet ready to buy. There are hidden objections that you have to bring out and resolve. You may have to go back through your presentation, or show them a different vehicle or whatever.

  6. You are not going to close every deal right away. Most customers will leave without buying. The real key to getting your share of sales is to follow-up with those customers who leave without buying. You must call them that same day or the next morning and keep calling them until they either buy or tell you to "take a hike!"

    If you don't follow-up quickly and frequently you will call the customer one day and they will tell you "I really appreciate you being so helpful, but I already bought a car somewhere else!"

    If you can get them back in the dealership then you have an excellent chance of closing the sale. This follow-up is what separates the real successful sales people from the average sales person who is barely making a living - and that's most of them.

  7. Once you sell a vehicle follow-up with your customer on a regular basis. Help them if they need the car brought in for service or whatever. Long term follow-up with sold customers will bring these people back to you everytime they need a vehicle, and they will send people they know to you as well.

    I have a close friend who has been selling cars for years, and he is the best I've ever seen at keeping track of his sold customers. He's to a point now where he rarely has to take an "up," because he is always so busy with repeat business.

  8. And most of all remember . . . always be honest. Treat each customer the same way you would want to be treated if you were in their shoes.

Good luck April in your new career.

All my very best . . .

Tony Iorio

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