Converting from new to used online

Bart Wilson
I have seen some data that after 60 days an internet prospect will gravitate from new to used. Does anyone have some tips on how to introduce used inventory to these customers?
Andrew DiFeo
After a few weeks of no contact from a consumer, we will send out an email with 3 pre-owned vehicles with pictures and prices. The introduction of the email mentions that although we know you were requesting information on a new vehicle, some of our guests have seen the value of a quality pre-owned vehicle that may fit their needs/wants/budget. We also place a link to our used car inventory in this email. We are starting a new program with Responselogix on April 1 that actually places 3 pre-owned vehicles from our inventory in the quote that gets sent out. The system automatically selects which vehicles to send out based on the type of new vehicle the customer wanted information on (compact sedan, SUV, coupe, etc.)
Jared Hamilton
Im a firm believer that multiple options, from the first response, are a good way to increase your close rates. For example in your first response give three choices, new (exactly what they wanted), another New (this time a bit cheaper) and third a similar used option. The logic is that people over build the cars with the configurator online (sine online there is no real payment pressure). By providing the cheaper option up front, and positioning it as a smart buy (not "since you cant afford option 1") you give them a way out. Human nature is such that people do not like to admit they cant afford what they requested, even if they like you, often they will go elsewhere to drop down to something they can afford. Present used as a smart option from day one and you will convert many more.
Bart Wilson
I guess that is the real question. How do you introduce used options without saying "if you can't afford it"? The chances are they aren't even on the same model they were 60 day ago.
Matt Watson
Yikes, I've heard that Response Logix's product costs more than our ILM and all it does is send automated emails! Our ILM can send new or used "similar vehicles" at anytime, including advertising if the used vehicles are CARFAX one owners. Our ILM/CRM system can do what their software does and a million additional things for probably less money! http://www.vinsolutions.com
Susan Burgess
We also use the theory of multiple options from the first email in the "generate a response" email. I train the sales reps that doing so keeps the sense of being in control with the sales rep- they love it when a customer submits a lead on just any Impala LS without any color preference. They send two new and one used. Now, if it's a customer that you've been going back and forth with and all of a sudden they throw the price objection- sending them the option of a used does two things- helps you save the deal and also helps highlight the value of the new vehicle, by pointing out the retained resale value. Taking a customer from new to used really isn't that difficult in the current economy. We do get a few people that land themselves on the top of the line most expensive build out, and that's when the buying consultant hat comes out- and you really gain their trust and brownie points for educating on why you don't want to sell them something that is outside of their credit and income range. Thi

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