5 Tactics for Converting Leads to Sales
We all know that most customers shop online when starting their search for the perfect car. Many of those shoppers call the dealership or even just come in when they are ready to engage. But a good number of people choose to submit an information request. Lead handling is an area where everyone can benefit from a reminder on what proven practices drive engagement. Here are 5 things your team should focus on to increase communication, drive appointments, and convert leads into sales.
1. Build Mobile-First Common Sense First Responses
Everyone is multi-tasking these days, and people are easily distracted. When a customer opens your email, it’s typically on their mobile device. In fact, in 2020, 75% of Gmail is read on a mobile phone. Keeping your email succinct and minimizing scroll is important. Every email should include price & inventory options to drive engagement and give the customer more information. If the customer has selected a specific vehicle, send a specific price on that car. If they are just starting their search and have not selected trim or package, you may decide to use “as low as” pricing to deliver a starting place for customers on the vehicle. Either way – include links to vehicles on your website!
2. Utilize Chat & Text – Everywhere
Texting is another great way to engage customers. A good way to start utilizing text is to ask permission while you are on the phone with a customer. Make sure to offer to send information that is valuable to the customer. Give them a reason to want to text! Always use your CRM or other compliant tool for texting. Your sales team should not be texting from personal phones. There are regulations with hefty fines for dealers who don’t stay compliant. Get your team up to speed on the rules nationally and in your state as well. When used properly, text can be a powerful tool.
3. Long-Term Follow-up Builds Long-Term Success
To all our dismay, not every customer will reply to your first response (even if you follow all the tips above). Depending on where in the research process a customer submits a lead, it could be weeks or months before they are ready to reach out to you. Staying in front of them with relevant content is important. A great way to write follow-up templates is to consider the everyday objections your salespeople encounter: price, trade-in, financing. Your potential customers have these same objections, they just haven’t told you yet! Craft emails with these topics in mind and have a documented process for your team to follow.
4. Ask for the Appointment, and Set it For Success
Most all customers still want to test drive a vehicle before they purchase, compare a few vehicles side-by-side, or go over financial information with a specialist. Scheduling an appointment should be a focus in 100% of the contacts your team makes. When asking for the appointment, always give the customer a choice: “Would you prefer to test drive today, or tomorrow?” The customer may still say no – but they must give you a more qualified response with information that can help you move forward. When you secure the appointment, sell it in writing with a text or email including location and expectations. Have a manager confirm these appointments! That is the number one way to improve show rates.
5. Benchmark & Manage with the 4×60 Approach
Now that you are doing all the right things, setting more appointments, and hopefully selling more cars – it’s important to track this success! The 4×60 approach allows your team to focus on the most important aspects of lead handling and identify areas of opportunity.
Work with your CRM vendors to help make this tracking easier, and make sure you have a dedicated person in the store who is responsible for reporting and updating this information. Every dealership has that CRM “champion” who knows the tool better than anyone else. Having that person own the 4×60 tracking will help you find meaningful opportunities to improve your dealership’s performance. Use the data in 1:1 meetings you hold with your team as well. This is a great time to let everyone know where they stand and make a plan to improve.
We have just scratched the surface on lead management, but for more tips and tactics to convert leads into sales – watch Sincro’s November 2020 webinar: The Top Five Ways to Covert Leads to Sales. Contact Sincro if we can help to improve your lead management process to grow your business (800) 909-8244.
Erin Zaborac started working in automotive at the age of 15 and has worked in every department in the store from Parts & Service to Finance and spent many years as a Marketing & BDC Manager for a large dealer group in Washington. She has been with Sincro for 10 years working as a Digital Marketing Consultant and Program Manager helping train dealers on process improvements to sell more cars. Erin lives in University Place, Washington with her husband, her beautiful and intelligent 8-year-old daughter and her funny and rambunctious twin 4-year-old boys.