In the face of a mountain of research on the modern automotive shopper, no one is going to deny that shopping patterns have changed:
- Buyers research online and self-serve themselves farther than ever towards a buying decision - before they contact or visit us
- Buyers have a wealth of information and shopping tools at their disposal - even on their phone
- Buyers are visiting fewer dealerships before making a purchase
So what does this mean for "sales process"? Does this mean having a sales process is old school or no longer relevant?
Well, maybe some processes are outdated and no longer serve the needs of the buyer or seller but a few things have not changed:
- The best sales process always matched the informational and experiential decision-making needs of the customer to the things we do for them
- The best sales process figures out what the customer already knows versus what they still need to learn
- The best sales process focuses on the vehicle features and capabilities that matters most to the individual customer
- The best sales process matches the speed of the process to the speed of the customer
- The best sales process makes its first job understanding the customer
The fact remains that for most people a vehicle purchase is a big deal. It's a lot of money and they do benefit from professional help to feel comfortable making a purchase decision.
Even if they do spend 11.5 hours in online research to come to a vehicle selection, they still feel more comfortable saying yes if a professional confirms that the vehicle is a great match to their needs.
So for the modern shopper, the question really isn't: "is sales process relevant"? The question is: "is my sales process customer centric enough?"