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In today’s competitive auto market, making the most of every trade-in and new sale opportunity can significantly improve dealership performance. These opportunities include an accurate service lane appraisal, where a joint effort between the service and sales teams can convert service appointments into new vehicle purchases.
This article discusses service lane appraisal strategies all dealerships should consider for building up the used car inventory and selling more new vehicles.
Service Lane Appraisal Strategies to Expand Inventory
Understand the Service Customer Before They Arrive
Dealership staff should do their research before every service appointment to learn more about the customer and their specific needs. This information should include the following:
- Their budget for buying a new car
- Their current vehicle situation
- Whether they have been shopping for a new one
The more aware a dealer is of a potential customer’s needs and vehicle state, the better they can advise them on their options.
Create a Seamless Customer Journey at the Dealership
It takes a group effort to close a service drive purchase successfully. The sales team cannot estimate the value of a car in the service drive, nor can the mechanic servicing the vehicle supply an offer to the customer. Having the right specialist at the proper time and location is crucial.
Moving a customer swiftly and simply through touchpoints is helped by creating seamless transitions from one department to the next. In today’s digital world, a wide range of technology and solutions can assist dealers in connecting departments, giving each one access to real-time, up-to-date information and connecting customers with the right dealership personnel at the right time.
Engage the Customer
Dealers can provide the most remarkable trade-in experiences by having the sales team engage service customers in a consultative (rather than a hard sell) manner. Dealers should also ensure that the salespeople selected to work the service drive are knowledgeable about the following:
Accurate appraisals. A skilled salesperson can recognize damage, previous repairs, and repainting and communicate with the service team to learn necessary details about mechanical problems. Furthermore, the salesperson must possess the interpersonal skills to explain the vehicle’s valuation to the consumer in ways that pique their interest.
Personalized Offers. The sales team should make each consumer feel valued and appreciated by personalizing the offer message, which requires having all information and paperwork in good working order when presenting their offer on the vehicle. These materials include the size of the service bill, which can make the message powerful and the offer credible.
Follow-up strategies. Of course, not all customers will accept a trade-in offer on the spot. Some might say they need time to think about it or ask the sales team to up the trade-in amount; others might reject the deal altogether.
Whatever the case, the sales team should keep open communication channels and follow up with valuable suggestions, which might include:
- Offering to have a third-party agency value their vehicle independently if they were dissatisfied with the offer
- Asking if there is a specific make and model that would encourage a trade-in and new purchase
- Looking for new trade-ins and service drive vehicles that fit the customer’s wish list
An Accurate Service Lane Appraisal Requires the Best Technology
To summarize, these strategies can help your staff bus service customers into the showroom provided they:
- Identify the needs of each service customer before they arrive
- Establish a smooth transition process between departments
- Understand how to engage and interact with customers when discussing trade-in options
- Remember to address any problems or inquiries customers might have
However, a great game plan and well-trained staff are only as valuable as the digital solutions you use. Optimizing your strategy and getting the most out of a skilled team requires valuation software that uses the correct data to perform accurate, enticing appraisals that result in more trade-ins and a more extensive pre-owned inventory.
Contact us today and discover how Affinitiv’s Service Lane Appraiser can help your dealership provide a more accurate appraisal to encourage more trade-ins and new vehicle purchases.
All | September 19, 2023