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Jared Hamilton
From: Jared Hamilton
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4 Ways to Improve Call Management for Dealerships

Car dealerships cannot ignore the phone. Once you can ensure that employees are picking up the phone every time it rings, you must also ensure that they are delivering a great phone experience to potential car-buyers. Read on for tips to improve your call management process at your dealership.

Maximize Your Phone Answering

Do you know how many of your phone calls go unanswered or are mishandled every day?

Give every caller the same amount of attention that you would give to a lead who walks into the showroom. Only about half of all inbound calls are potential sales, so make every call count.


  1. 1. Answer the phone
    2. Make sure your IVR routes correctly
    3. Remember that the goal of every call is to set the appointment
    4. Make every call successful with these elements:
         - Build Relationships, Understand Needs, Create Value, & Ask for the Commitment

If you don’t set the appointment, the caller is going to your competition.

Stop Your Call Routing Madness

CallSource’s automotive data insights show that 80% of viable customer calls don’t result in an appointment. Don’t let a lead’s phone experience be the reason they aren’t walking in the door.

Are you sure phone routing isn’t a problem?

When was the last time you called your dealership and asked to be connected to Sales or Service? How was your experience? If it wasn’t seamless, you need to make operational improvements.


  1. Make sure your IVR system routes to the proper department. Check your call tracking data to see how many calls go to voicemail.
  2. If a lead leaves a message, who is responsible for calling him/her back? Who makes sure that is happening?

If your customers’ experience isn’t perfect, they are going to hang up and call your competitor.

Download our free Automotive Phone Tips to keep at your desk as a reminder to have great phone calls.

Dedicated Phone Team

Although a lot of dealerships are moving to a BDC model, you don’t have to have one to maximize your inbound phone leads.

If you want to maximize your phone to capture more opportunities, you have to prioritize a phone-handling team and call-management system.

Phone handling is a skill that needs to be developed. Inbound call handlers should qualify leads, make sure the caller has a great phone experience, and get them to the right department as quickly as possible.

Inbound call auto data shows the average appointment-setting rate in a dealer’s Sales department is less than ¼ of all possible opportunities – and the Service department sets just over 50% of opportunities. Both of these stats leave much room for improvement.

Dedicated “Call Back” Employee

Missed opportunity alerts are a great way to save a customer and turn a loss into a win. Training a call handler to specifically recapture missed opportunities will increase your call-to-sale rate.


  1. Have a dedicated area for the call handler.
  2. Don’t require this call handler to cover the phones while making outbound calls.
  3. This call handler must solve the customer’s question or come up with an alternative; he or she needs to listen to the call and find the solution before calling the lead back.
  4. Create an incentive program for every appointment set.
  5. Train this employee on your CRM, inventory system, and other tools so they can overcome the caller’s objections.
  6. Use DealSaver Alerts to prioritize calls.

See how CallSource can improve your phones

Contact us to learn more about CallSource can help you control the phone experience and gain more customers by setting more leads into appointments.

Improve your employees’ phone skills with reporting, training and coaching for better calls.



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