Internet Sales - Next Phase for just getting going?

Jacob Jackson
Thanks for everyone who talked to me about what type of skill set to look for in an ISM, but the discussion brought up so many other avenues we really hadnt considered. Having seen we were not even scratching the surface with what we are currently doing, my new question is WHATS NEXT? Here is the scoop. We are a single point domestic franchise, we get 200-250 leads per month (including third party, our site, autotrader and forddirect). Our past ISM sold 8-12 cars a month. (we are looking for a new one and passing out the leads to the sales floor in the meantime) What would you do next? Search marketing, set up a BDC outsource to a call center? Any help is appreciated thanks!
Jared Hamilton
If all you are doing at the moment is buying leads (a good first step) the next think I would look at is your current site. Your website should be managed as a virtual extension of your lot. How much traffic is going to your site? What is the conversion rate? What is the close rates of those leads? Look at your site analytics and look for traffic leaks to plug. I cant stress enough how your site should be the new pulse of your store. 3rd party leads are a great start, and I commend you for working to make a switch to digital marketing, but to get serious about selling cars in todays market your site must be your focus.
Bart Wilson
It looks like a perfect time to reinvent. I would agree that step one is to create your process. With a strong process in place the ISM can change but the progress won't. Also, if you are already handing out the leads to the sales floor why not design a process around that? I think that is the future anyway. Then you could hire a "BDC Manager" or someone to manage the process and make sure it was being followed.
Ryan Bolz
There are two elements that our dealership has found vital in handling our internet business. First, it is absolutely crucial to be in a position to properly handle the leads you already have. I have to agree with what others have said and build a process around what you are already doing. Handing out leads to the sales floor is fine only so long as those leads are being pursued and there is some accountability involved. Our dealership is somewhat large, and admittedly our sales associates prefer the showroom over the computer. That being said, we have an operating BDC department and BDC manager to provide the necessary structure that allows all our sales team members to be involved in internet sales. Getting this squared away early is best, as it gets everyone on board and trained. Second, we've found the best and most cost effective way to generate interest in our dealership is via our website. The Gene Reed Toyota website (http://ww
Jacob Jackson
You have all seemed to mention process, or lead handling of some sort. Does my internet process need to differ that much from our retail floor? Currently our process is like this. Receive Lead > Respond with information, including price (the ISM goes to the desk to get a price, should be a good one)> call and set up appointment> once they show up we work the deal like usual. Are there any process secrets that Im missing?
Silia J. Hatzi
The biggest difference between handling an Internet lead and a walk-in or phone-in lead is this: you typically have very little "feel" about what the customer cares about & it is therefore more difficult to customize/personalize the follow up: when they walk in, we observe behavior & can see what interests a customer and -as when they call in- we engage in a DIALOGUE. Online customers on the other hand, typically engage in a MONOLOGUE with the website, and the salesperson following up has no read on what the customer is looking for or at, except name of make/model. Jazel’s "BBT" website technology ("Behavior-Based Targeting”) is changing all this: BBT not only dynamically morphs your website's homepage to show your customer the segment (with specials info, etc.) of the make/model they entered in their online search query, but it also permits the sales person to view precisely what segments the customer viewed (& how much time they spent on each segment) prior to calling,

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