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Help How do I engage with customers when I cant get ahold of them!

Discussion in 'How do I ... ?' started by Colby Joyner, Oct 7, 2016.

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  1. Colby Joyner

    Colby Joyner
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    First Name:
    Colby
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Alamo City Chevrolet
    Twitter Handle:
    @accinternetdept
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    OK,
    Backstory - I work at a Chevrolet dealership and I am the Internet Director. I am currently trying to revamp the "dept".

    Before I started we had a round robin through all sales staff. After I was promoted we went to a straight Internet Dept with 4 salespeople. We get on avg 800 leads per month and currently have a closing ratio of 4.32%.

    I am having a huge problem with the initial engagement of the customer.

    Once we get the customer here we have a closing ratio of 51% but the appt ratio is 26%. I am looking to do 30% appt ratio, 50% show ratio and 60% closing on show ratio. Those are last months numbers. This month it is far worse - 11% appt ratio.

    I have put in play a good (as far as I know and have learned) process to follow up with internet leads. But it does not seem to work.

    I send txt, make phone calls, send emails and send videos when able. Still no movement.

    What can I do to create a better sense of urgency with my customers and get them to schedule the appointment and show?

    Any advice and help is appreciated!

    Thank you,

    Colby
     
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  3. VVAuto1

    VVAuto1
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    First Name:
    Victor
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Spitzer
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    Can you clarify Internet department for this thread? Are you guys cradle to grave or set appt and hand off to whomeever?

    I agree with you the toughest part about getting the appt % up is getting Contact
    on a day in day out basis, from a reps standpoint and a departmental standpoint.

    There are only a few major Variables below as it relates to contact - change one and see if the output/impact is what your looking for.

    Measure then fail/scale as quick as possible....Then try again

    Contact variables
    - response time
    - Amount of follow up (and when)
    - content of email/text/ voicemail
    - lead mix (sometimes outside of Internet dept control - inventory driven, pricing philosophy, marketing , etc)
    - team members

    Example: if customers arnt responding to your texts, look at the response time on texts, what is your team asking on the text, is your engagement consistent - if it's not - look at who is having the most success with texting - what's their response time and what's their message sent - scale that across your team.

    If your truely making contact with enough people then what do your current calls sounds like? Before going into urgency are you selling an appointment or do you guys go into selling the specific car?

    Sidenote: you can pick up a lot of opportunity on the show side. You've done the hard work of getting the customer on the phone, you've set the appt, do everything in you can to ensure that customer shows.

    Strive for 60-70% (very possible) and you will easily pick up more deals. Example what's your appt confirmation process look like? Currently, just calling? Try adding an email appt reminder,

    I'm confused on one statement you made, "you put in play a good process - but it doesn't seem to work" are you saying this is the process you were able to produce a 26% percent appointment rate with personally and now since you've tried to scale with 4 internet sales team members that it's not seeming to work?

    The inches of opportunity exist everywhere in our processes, inches add up to feet, feet add up to yards, yards add up to touchdowns.
     
    #2 VVAuto1, Oct 8, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2016
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  4. Colby Joyner

    Colby Joyner
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    First Name:
    Colby
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Alamo City Chevrolet
    Twitter Handle:
    @accinternetdept
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    We are a cradle to grave dept. Calls are decent. Def need some work and training. Our appointment confirmations are through txt and email with a manager confirmation call 15 mins after the appointment is set an another appoint confirmation before they arrive on the day the appointment is for. The process I put into place was not mine personally. It was adopted from different forums and other peers. After posting this thread I have changed some portions of the process to see if it works better. The difficulty is I cant seem to get people to answer the phone. We are selling the appointment not the car. We will answer any related question and will price quote but the focus is to get the appointment.
     
  5. VVAuto1

    VVAuto1
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    First Name:
    Victor
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    Both cradle to grave and business development model pose challenges.

    Apologize in advance for the rant on the model, I know your not looking for concerns on the model but ideas to get better, but i think it's important to understand the pros and challenges of what ever model your running.

    My personal opinion the challenge that cradle to grave presents is directly on the contact and appointment side. Let's say use your having a good month, 800 leads x 26% appt x 50% show....= 104 customers show correct?

    When the customer arrives what's the avg time it take to work the deal... 1-2 hours? Let's say 90 minutes. What is 90 minutes x 104 times a month? Over 9000 minutes of productivity that is not spent making phone calls/prospecting/ generating appointments/ follow up with no shows

    If you have a good month getting customers in and working deals, you have less time to prospect tomorrow's business.

    Contact - just like sales is a numbers game... If you make "x amount" of calls "y amount" will answer the phone. That being said there are some benefits of cradle to grave as well as benefits/challenges with the business development model.

    Maybe some cradle to grave bdc are constantly pumping out high appt/ show numbers (show to close % as well)....with a moderate volume of leads...I would be interested to hear....

    how does the first week of your campaign look and have you audited your process to ensure your team is executing properly?
     
    #4 VVAuto1, Oct 8, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2016
  6. Sabrina

    Sabrina
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    First Name:
    Sabrina
    Dealer or Company Name:
    carma
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    Beyond the above I'd recommend digging into your leads. Where are they coming from? Are you lead walling customers on your site and getting garbage leads? Is your process the same for every type of lead, or is it tailored to your lead source? Can you not get hold of customers because they are actively avoiding contact?

    With a high volume of leads coming in, it would be valuable to do some analysis of your varying lead sources and identify the top sources and the most successful methods of converting them. You might find that focusing on a few specific sources proves more valuable then getting the contact information of every person that lands on your site.
     
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  7. Chubbard

    Chubbard
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    First Name:
    Crystal
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Easton Motors
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    We have the same problem, but I think there are a few specific reasons (based on our business model) for this that may not be an issue for most of the other dealerships here. That said, we have found that for people who convert online for credit applications tend to give more quality information than those who fill out other types of forms on the site. I think the rules for landing page forms applies here: the "ask" (i.e., good contact information) has to live up to what you're delivering once that form is completed. The better the chance that your lead gets what they want, the more likely they will feel comfortable giving out contact information. The less they trust that it's a good deal for them to give you their info, the more you'll run into bad leads.

    I think it's also worth digging into your buyer's journey. For people who need a car NOW, there's a greater need to make contact with someone who can help; people who are casually browsing for a purchase sometime down the road have very little incentive to let you know who they are.
     
  8. VVAuto1

    VVAuto1
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    So your saying find ways on the website to position/put in focus a more qualified lead forms... Focus on credit apps vs trade, right?
     
  9. Chubbard

    Chubbard
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    First Name:
    Crystal
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    If the credit application is the most important part of your site, yes. If the trade-in forms is the most important, then the focus should be there.

    Two things that made the biggest difference for us in online conversion of the form *we wanted* to convert were: simplification (no one fills out long forms online, but I see SO MANY dealerships who still treat applications/forms like it's 1995), and featuring it prominently on our top landing pages (as well as having the obvious mobile-friendly buttons). Dig into your analytics and do reverse goal conversions to see what your popular pages are, and what is logical given how people are already converting and behaving on your site.

    A typical month now is converting at 300%+ better than the form that had been in place for years and years prior.
     
  10. JenSchrader

    JenSchrader
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    First Name:
    Jennifer
    Dealer or Company Name:
    NLM
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    I wouldn't get discouraged however we are in the world of non verbal communications especially dealing with the process of gathering information for a vehicle purchase. Hammering the phones and trying to get them on the phone is going to be a challenge within itself.

    The best way to do it is make sure your content is clear, effective and most importantly information related. This can start with your website & making sure these 3 fine rules are in place: Where am I? What can I do here? & Why should I do it?

    As we all hear the joyful phrase "Content is King". Take a step back and think as a consumer. What information are you looking to get from the dealership regardless if it is a Quick Quote, Vehicle Availability Request, Credit Application, Value Your Trade? Having that content readily available to the consumer is a big key to your online success of an appointment.

    One of the biggest fails I am seeing more and more each day is the over abundance of templates. SAME OLD SAME OLD SAME OLD.. Make it more personable! It doesn't take much to type up a few sentences with the vehicle information they information they are looking for. Provide alternatives of other vehicles that are comparable to what they are looking for and minimum of 2 pre owned vehicles.

    If you have 4 Internet Sales Reps are you depending on them to do all the follow ups or are you in charge of that? Once you hand over the lead to them after making contact are they followed up properly or solely depending on templates that are pre generated to be sent out?

    I have noticed Trade In Pages are a big generator as that seems to be the most difficulties that customers experience "Getting the best value for their trade". I agree with Chubbard above, dig into those analytics!
     
  11. Pwillits

    Pwillits
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    First Name:
    Paul
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Granite Buick GMC Nissan Hyundai
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    1. I agree with Sabrina as well, you really need to dig into those leads and see who/what is performing for you. When I took over my department 5 years ago we had a huge volume of third party leads that after evaluating them were junk. We cut those costs and transferred those lead dollars to digital dollars.

    2. 4 guys - cradle to grave - 800 leads per month? I can promise you those 4 individuals know where the lowest hanging fruit is and THAT is were they spend the time. What is your long term follow up plan and do they follow it? On average 10% of those will buy within 30 days. What is your plan for the other 720? Days 31 - 60, 61 - 90 and 91-120 what are you closing?

    3. Build relevant content and evaluate your emails. What performs and what doesn't? Do you know your open and read rates?

    4. Phone skills: Your first 1 - 4 phone calls will likely result in leaving a message for the customer. What is the content of the message? Do you ask the customer to call you back or do you state you will call them back? One of my major rules is that we NEVER ask a customer to call us back. That puts the control of when the conversation will continue in their hands. You will have your sales staff telling you "I've called them over and over already boss!" Instead, we tell the customer, "I hope you received my email and that I answered all of your questions. I will call you back later in the day just to be sure I didn't miss anything." This sets the customer up to know that we will be calling back and when we do, we have fulfilled a promise as well. it is amazing how many customers answer that 2nd or 3rd call, knowing you promised to call back and did.
     
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