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Bryan Armstrong

Bryan Armstrong e-Commerce Director

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Steps to the (SERVICE) Sale

I believe that most Dealers offer some semblance of rudimentary training when it comes to the Sales Floor on proper “Steps to the Sale” as well as a list of best practices that can be endlessly debated. However in the average Service Drive, how much training is given outside of how to generate an R.O., close a ticket or dispatch a job to the correct level tech?

Since happy customers on the drive equal a higher profit and higher retention, I want to share with you the basics “Steps to the Service Drive Sale” that I implemented at a Group where I was the Corporate Trainer.

Perhaps my biggest shock, as many of you will recognize that these are VERY BASIC sale techniques, is that Service Advisors dislike being called SALESMEN. “We are ADVISORS” came the hot retort.

However, in the first Month of implementation Customer Pay rose 27% Y: Y and C.S.I. also rose. Needless to say, they quickly adopted and expanded this rudimentary list to embrace a true customer-centric Service SELLING experience.

1. Meet and Greet. SMILE!!

  • Hello and welcome to ABC Auto Service Selling Department. My name is _______, and you are? Shake hands and get Customer Update.


While you’re here, let me update your records:


  • Full Name, address, two numbers and e-mail
  • Any other Drivers in the home?
  • What other vehicles in the household?


So, how may we serve you today?


2. Plant “seed” - clarify purpose

  • If appt: “Oh yes, we’ve been expecting you! Remind me again what all you wanted us to do today?
  • Do walk around with the customer. Touch tires, dents, scratches (without saying anything). Offer related services i.e. Buff, touch-up, nitrogen tire fill, detail, battery service, etc.
  • If not an appt. say”No problem, I understand how things can come up because I’ve had similar situations, and I can appreciate how frustrating it can be. Let’s do this, I’ll work it right in for a diagnostic which will at least give us a starting point and let us know what we’re up against”.
  • Assure the customer that since the price of the diagnostic will be applied toward repair work completed here today, it makes the most sense. (relate to Dr. Office experience)
  • “While my Master Tech performs that service for you, if he runs across anything else that requires attention, do you want me to let you know about it, or should we just focus on the one issue?” (Permission to up sell)

Walk customer to waiting area and show restroom location, vending and water machines.

3. Present Findings-Sell Service

A.) Isolate customer to desk area, position yourself on the same side of the desk, sit 45 degrees and go over checklist findings:

  • Start with the “green” or “Great News!” items, with all the things that are RIGHT with their car.
  • Go over the “Yellow” items. Advise them that these things are important but not as urgent as the other services, but you want to let them know so they can plan ahead. “Though if you’d like we can have them all taken care of today.”
  • Which brings us to the reason you came in here today, which is to take care of your car, right? Earlier you told me you wanted to know if my Master tech found any other areas of concern in either of what we deem the two most important areas: reliability or safety. These are the items we need to complete today to ensure you don’t have a bigger problem later on, or worse yet, jeopardize yours or a loved one’s safety. Now as I explained earlier the cost of the diagnostic will be deducted from these repairs. Meaning that the total bill will only be ___. Give me a signature right there and we’ll get it taken care of right away.
  • Don’t accept a NO
  • Price Objection-Start narrowing or prioritizing services by info you received from your tech. Move some services into the “Yellow” category if possible. Prioritize all Services into the next 3, i.e. “So if we do X and Y today, that will resolve most of the Safety oriented concerns, then we’ll do W and Z on each of your next respective Service visits. That way we can basically spread this out over the next 6 Months and still keep your car running correctly and safely while making it easier on the budget, o.k.?”.
  • Time Objection-I can offer you either a shuttle service or rental car. Which do you prefer? Sign right here.

4. Delivery

  • Make sure car is washed and in drive.
  • Complete ticket-Take customer back to desk.
  • Review services rendered
  • Walk to cashier and introduce them
  • Thank customer and inform of car location

Although “Sales” is a dirty word to most Service Advisors, might I suggest that by failing to apprise our Customers of the Services they need we are not fulfilling our role as an “advisor” either. 

Aybody care to share a "Best Practice" for the Drive?

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