Auto Dealers Turning Customers Away?

auto dealer internet leadsIf you are a sales manager at a dealership or a GM and you discovered that your salespeople we turning people away how would you react?

Let’s say a potential customer walked into your dealership and asked a salesperson about a 2010 victory red Camaro, but you sold it the day before or just hour before the prospect walked through the door…and the salesperson replies; Sorry, we just sold that vehicle, but thanks for stopping by.

The typical “sales” approach most dealerships would take would be to ask the prospect a few of the following questions:

  • We have a 2010 green Camaro or a 2011 victory red Camaro in stock now. Would you like to take a look at those vehicles?
  • Ask, are there any other vehicles we might be able to show you today?
  • If I can find you a 2010 victory red Camaro how soon would you be looking to purchase?

Most sales managers or GM’s would show a salesperson where the door is if they did not make some attempt to engage a visitor to their brick and mortar dealership…so why are some auto dealers turning online prospects away looking for used vehicles?

While working on a used car project recently, we discovered that many if not all used car dealers won’t accept a vehicle inquiry if they mark the vehicle for removal from their database. The visitor inquired about a specific vehicle, but the dealer won’t accept the prospect’s online inquiry because they already sold the vehicle possibly. What if the dealer had the same vehicle in the same color, or only a year or two off from the vehicle in question? The dealer will never know because they never let the prospect through the front door.

Most auto dealers would never do this to a customer walking through their front door, so why are auto dealers turning online customers away looking for used vehicles?

If a used car dealer crunched the numbers they would still have a respectable ROI for used vehicle inquiries while adding some names to their marketing list.

I’d be interested in hearing from used car dealers, General Managers, or even some owners to get your perspective on why you don’t want a used vehicle lead if it is marked for deletion from your database.

We’ve been working with auto dealers for five years helping them generate quality leads with a great ROI. Got questions about generating online leads for your store? Drop us a line and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Ugly Websites Do They Work?

This evening I was crunching some numbers on an ugly website I manage. I know there are some good sources out there on “ugly websites” that are successful, but I wanted to share some my personal experiences.

A couple years ago, I had an automotive site that I managed, graphically, eye appeal, etc. it was not an award winner, but man did that site convert well when compared to the replacement site with much more sophisticated graphics and layout.

After crunching some conversion and revenue numbers on the ugliest site in my portfolio, I was shocked!

So here’s my question to the community; What is your experience with ugly websites?

  • Have you replaced your ugly website with something much more polished and sophisticated?
  • Did your conversions increase or decrease?
  • Did your website visitors increase or decrease?

Here are a few good links for ugly websites:

My personal list of ugly websites:

  • Dallas Yellow Pages – This site is ugly, unchanged for several years, but the domain has been alive for approximately 10 years and it indexes very well.
  • 1800GetACar – This is one of the ugliest automotive websites I’ve seen, but it has an amazing success rate for connecting car buyers with lenders and auto dealers nation-wide.