"We'll be back"

Vincent R
At my dealership we get this a lot. A customer comes in, asks some basic questions such as what they need to get financing or just gets a couple of prices and leaves saying, "we'll be back". Virtually 100% of the time they never do. They even do this after the write up and/or test drive. Now the business model here is guaranteed approval on financing with approved down payment (W.A.D.). So in order to finance people with scores in the 500's, there is an acquisition fee that needs to be factored into the overall price. This is also why we don't usually list the prices online. Instead of a price, the listing will say, "Please call!" So sometimes the price may sound kinda high when we include the acquisition fee. The only time we may give a customer the five finger discount is if their score is in the high 600's or higher. Now I've worked at a couple other dealerships and I have not experienced so many prospects lying about coming back for whatever reason. Whenever they say they'll be back, I can tell that they're not being very sincere. I am beginning to believe that follow ups are a waste of time as our be back rate is so microscopic. And if by some rare chance they do come back, they usually don't end up buying the car. This happens to the other sales guys too. I suspect it may be due to our prices. When a prospect leaves, they may think they can get a better deal somewhere else or find a better car, etc. Can anyone she'd some light on this? Thanks.
Shannon Hammons
What kind of dealership do you work? Are you a buy here pay here or something?
Vincent R
We do buy here pay here financing unless the customer has good credit. Otherwise a bank may take over the loan after a couple months.
Dustin Lyons
Vincent, it could be due to your prices or it could be many other reasons as well. It is up to you to find out. To get someone to buy a car you must create more value for them than you are asking them to give up in exchange. If you don't know what they value or how they feel about you, the dealership, the car, the numbers etc... then you will probably keep getting those kinds of answers and having people leave and never come back. Remember creating value comes from knowing what they value and it starts at the first point of contact with your customers. Make sure that through the whole process you are doing everything you can to discover as much about your customer, their situation, and their preferences as you can. This way you can truly create value for them. Also get them to like and trust you as well. All these things must happen right from the beginning and continue all the way even into following up with them after the sale. So if they tell you they will be back, there is something that you have missed, so ask some questions, find out what is not right with the situation. Even if you have to ask the same questions different days until you get a real answer. If you are finding out that it is because of pricing, then perhaps you can find a different method of presenting your numbers that makes it easier to understand. But the key is you have to ask the customer.
Carlo Castillo
Being transparent online and showroom is important. You're dealership is losing a lot of $$ using "Please Call" on their listings. Today's savvy buyer most times will not tolerate that move on to the next ad. I would toss the business model and price the cars with out these fees. Not many customers today will like to go to a showroom not knowing what to expect at all. If they do get your dealership they will be full of what my GSM calls FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt) which is a recipe for "We'll be Back"!
mark rask
What is your process for followup

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