Here’s a riddle for you. Knock, knock. Who’s there? Opportunity. Don’t be silly, opportunity doesn’t knock twice! Here’s another knock: Not making the most of the opportunities your dealership is being presented with daily.
Every department in your dealership has the responsibility to contribute to the dealership’s profitability. The responsibility in making sure this happens and begins at the top. That responsibility reoccurs every day that you open your doors.
Every department also has the responsibility to help strengthen the other departments, grow them and build future dealership business as well. Your team members and leaders should all be well versed in the processes and procedures that will make this happen. The responsibility in making sure those processes and procedures are in place and are being followed consistently begins at the top as well. If you’re not getting results and you do nothing about it, that’s on you, and nobody else. After all, it always starts at the top.
Think about the sales department retailing a unit. You set it up right, folks, and every department benefits. You know who else benefits? The client.
Here’s an example. You sell a unit (hurray!). Before going into the business office (F&I), whoever bought that unit should be ushered back into the service department for introductions. That client should be spending time in your parts department as well, but for this example we’re just looking at the service department side of things. The service department should have already been called about who’s coming back, what they bought and perhaps a little back story on the client so they can be prepared to discuss what’s pertinent to the purchase. There’s nothing wrong with being prepared! Service and maintenance education starts the process of client retention and generates an opportunity for consistent service department business. All this, thanks to the sales department.
The service advisor goes through all the services that the department offers (upsell opportunities), schedules the first service, tells the client that they will be checking in on him or her in a few days to see how everything is running and if any technical questions have come up since purchase. The service advisor also plants the seeds of all the warranty enhancement products that are available through the dealership to protect their investment before that client goes into the business office. Why? Who better to believe about your vehicle’s health than your vehicle’s doctor, your service advisor? Plant the seeds with your clients ahead of time. Your business office will increase its close rate when it’s time to present all those products to protect that client’s purchase. Thank you service department, thank you sales department.
Something else to think about, and perhaps the most important something else, is sincerity. You’ve got to believe in the products and services you’re presenting and why they’re good for the client and the dealership.
If your service department does their job and keeps the client over time, you have a better than 50 percent chance of selling another vehicle to those individuals when they’re ready to purchase again — that’s a future sales department opportunity. Everything works hand in hand, and always should!
Stable profitability and consistent growth doesn’t happen by itself, folks. You’ve got to make it happen. More times than not all those opportunities are staring you, your team leaders and team members in the face. The business is there. You’ve just got to make sure you’re doing what needs to be done to get it, and keep it. And therein lies the rub. Opportunities don’t always knock twice, so taking advantage of them when presented should never be a riddle.
Have a great month...MM
Mark Mooney is the principal of Mark Mooney Powersports Consulting, a Santa Cruz, California, company that works with OEMs and powersports dealers to strengthen dealership performance. Mark is a nationally known speaker and teacher that works with dealers throughout the United States. Mark Mooney Powersports Consulting is “empowering performance and strengthening profitability through practical solutions.”