The way to a customer’s heart is through his part-exchange

It is particularly relevant at present to write about the growing number of businesses wanting to buy your car dot whatever, and we have devoted lots of space to a topic which is baffling to us so must be even more so to car buyers (and sellers).

These companies have exploited the obvious weaknesses that exist in many franchised car dealerships when it comes to actually communicating the fact that they actively want to buy your car, in order to try and sell you a new one.

This situation was brought home to me last night during a function. I was chatting to an old chap who had seen the catchy advert and exclaimed that apparently by using this company you “get a lot more money for your old car than you would by simply trading it in”. So the power of advertising is clearly working but in the trade we know this not to be true. Many of these same cars are clearly recycled in the trade and often by the same dealers who would have certainly liked to have taken the car in and sold the seller a new one in the process, so are we really to assume that the seller got the best [rice? Perhaps not.

What is clear however is that whilst car dealers, especially franchised ones, are good at spending their marketing budgets on promoting different models, special offers, finance incentives and mega sales events, they are not so good at telling customers that they do, in fact, want to buy their car as much as anyone. It’s a basic business principle and they should do this in order to ultimately sell them another car.

Perhaps the campaigns by the dealers need to be more specific because people like the old chap I spoke to really believe that they will get a better deal by selling separately and then visiting a dealer to negotiate on the purchase of a new car. This obviously means there is still an awful lot of work to be done.

Out of potentially thousands of people who have already sold their cars to these on line companies (and I am sure there are many very happy customers who are very happy with the price they received) how many of them were looking to replace that car with another newer model? I would hazard a guess at a considerable majority.

Therefore if a buyer sold his 07 plate ford focus and armed with his money decided to then visit a Ford dealer (presumably by bus since he doesn’t hace a car) to buy a newer model the Ford dealer has lost out on the opportunity of buying the customers previous car and gaining another chance of selling the trade-in for a profit.

And guess what? Yes, it is all our own fault. If we were better at proactively buying the existing car, were actually being enthusiastic about it and were professional in appraising and pricing the car customers would have more reason to want to do business with that dealer. With a shrinking car pool and dealers fighting for fewer retail worthy cars then surely instead of advertising cars to sell it may be more beneficial to run a campaign about the cars they would like to buy.

Subscribe to Motor Trade Insider by Email


, , , ,

Comments are closed.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes