A note to pick up where we left off: If the customer asks about the payment while sitting on the bike and the salesperson wants to spend some more time developing a friendly relationship, then can ask a question that makes sense at the time.
For example, “Travis, we can check out the payments in a minute but I am curious, what got you interested in the XYZ?”
When it is time to continue, I start the role-play at the beginning again and finish at the write-up stage.
Salesperson: Hi. Welcome to Motorcycle World. How are you doing today?
Customer: I’m doing fine, thanks. I’m just looking.
Salesperson: Super. Thanks for thinking of us. Take your time. We have lots to look at. We have new, pre-owned, sport bikes, touring. Are you looking for anything in particular?
Customer: I wanted to check out a few things about XYZ.
Salesperson: That’s a nice bike. We have them towards the back. My name is Steve. What’s your name?
Customer: My name is Travis.
The customer says as he shakes the salesperson’s hand.
Salesperson: Nice to meet you, Travis. Ok, let’s go look at the XYZ. Follow me.
Salesperson: Say Travis, what got you interested in the XYZ?
Travis: My brother got one last year and he really loves it.
Salesperson: You know Travis, we hear that all the time. Would you be happier if you had a new XYZ?
Travis: I sure would be. How much is it?
Salesman: Travis, the price is only nineteen-five-fifty and that’s a lot of bike for the money. The best part Travis is you don’t have to pay for it … well not all at once anyway. Travis we have some awesome financing and can really make it easy and affordable to take home. Were you planning on financing the motorcycle?
Travis: Yes I am. I was planning on putting two thousand down. What would my payment be?
I pause the role-play at this point and explain why I discuss price/finance in the same breath. If the salespeople think about most conversations, they will realize that the listener will continue the conversation where the talker stopped. It is just human nature. So by simply quoting the only price, then in the same mannerism switching the conversation to their great financing, many times you will find that the customer’s next response is, “What would my payments be?”
Payment buying is how most people are going to make their purchase. I tell the class that I am convinced you could sell every motorcycle in stock for a million dollars if you could get the payment at fifty dollars a month.
When dealing with the price you could be a thousand dollars apart. But how far apart can you be on a payment? Payment buyers are the easiest people to close. More of them are out living the dream of riding a new motorcycle than price shoppers.
Yes, some customers will switch the salesperson back to the money and want a better price. This is not all bad. Now they are in a position to sit down and begin a write-up. If all goes well, they will end up with an offer to buy today.
After this discussion we are ready to go back to the role-play.
Customer (Travis): What would my payment be?
Salesperson: Travis, the reason I said we have such awesome financing is that we have many options. We seem to always be able to find a payment that works for our customers. Follow me and we can sit down and figure out an affordable payment for you.
The salesperson turns and walks to their desk. The customer will almost always follow.
Salesperson: Ok Travis, here’s how our financing works. We quite honestly could get you over a hundred different payments for the same motorcycle. But you know the best payment is the one that works for you. John, what payment would fit your budget? Some people like to pay the bike off early and get payments around $600, is that what you’re thinking?
Travis: No, that would be way too high.
Salesperson: No problem. That would be way too high for me too. What payment would work for you? $500…$450…$425…
Travis: Gee, I was hoping to get a payment around $300. Do you think that is possible?
Salesperson: I sure do, Travis. We are definitely in the ballpark. Tell you what. Let me get a little bit of information from you and then I can get you an exact payment quote to the penny. Travis, who is the first person you are going to show your new motorcycle to?”
End of role-play.
I then explain to the class that I am not only switching the conversation from the money but also I am trying to have the customers visualize themselves showing their new motorcycle to a relative or friend. I am also hoping to get some good leads.
The salespeople should always ask every customer if they know someone that is looking for a new motorcycle. Many, many times they will end up with several prospective names and phone numbers. The beauty of that is the salespeople can use their customer’s name as a reference, making it much easier to get a good friendly conversation going.
As a young salesman, I ended up getting 11 sales because one customer purchased from me and gave me three references. Two of the references purchased a new motorcycle and the reference circle continued to 11 sold units being purchased. Most of them happened in a 30-day period.
Author’s Note: I am very confident that if a salesperson brings a customer a committed offer to buy, based upon a payment request, that salesperson will close most of them. There are so many ways to justify a few extra dollars a month. If you break the difference into days you have to be talking about a very small amount.
This is the 26th part in a series of blogs about hiring new salespeople. To read the previous blogs in this series, click here.
Steve Lemco is the youngest brother of the late Ed Lemco and has been doing sales training and hiring for motorcycle dealers since 1983. He is the author of three sales books, the new “Training and Hiring New Salespeople,” “Motorcycle Sales Made Easy” and “You Gotta-Wanna.” Steve has trained in every state in the U.S., as well as England, France, Australia and New Zealand. Steve incorporates motivational boards and games along with his training and hiring because he believes the best way to get the job done is to make it fun.