The automotive retail landscape has changed and is continuing to change. CNBC and Phil LeBeau recently reported on how Americans are rethinking how they buy cars. Much of their report was based on findings from a recent McKinsey report that confirms the current trends in how consumers are approaching the retail experience of finding their next car.
Hans-Werner Kass one of McKinsey's senior partners observed that these are the biggest most dramatic changes and consumer trends that the industry has seen in over 50 years.
The McKinsey report went global and looked at shopping and buying patterns world wide. The main finding and main conclusion over all is something the auto industry has been well aware of and that is, now more than even, consumers do most of their shopping online and are now going to fewer dealerships.
Car buyers easily can get all the pricing information they need plus all the information on makes, models and packages from the Internet. A car buyer today using the OEM's website and a few third party sites like Edmunds.com or TrueCar.com can easily narrow down the selection to just one or two vehicles. They can also get full pricing data and even calculate their payments. The report also shows that almost 20% of car shoppers are not test driving anymore. The implication is that auto buyers want a streamlined process that is quick, easy and with minimal to no haggling.
In the field of automotive sales training you'll find one man who predicted this change over 15 years ago. Grant Cardone has been using and adapting what he's called Information Based Selling as a means to effectively assist a buyer through the process of buying a car. The old school tactics are a thing of the past. Sales professionals in this climate need to be just that. Professionals that are committed to bringing a positive buying experience to the shopper. In Grant's book Sell Or Be Sold, he lays down the perfect sales process for the modern buyer and it is structured on the principle that service is senior to selling.
Cardone says, "I developed information assisted selling as a new way of handling customers whereby the company uses information in order to assist consumers. I first introduced information assisted selling to solve problems. This new way of selling was immediately validated with improvements in sales effectiveness, employee retention,and customer satisfaction."
To further help auto dealers with learning Information Based Selling, Grant Cardone created a fully interactive virtual learning center where auto dealers, managers and sales people can practice and learn how to use Information Based Selling to create a the streamlined and positive experience customers in today's market are looking for.
Real success, solvency and longevity for the auto industry means providing real human value and experience at the dealer lever which means that managers and sales people are motivated and trained to work with the modern car buyer in a non-confrontational service based retail experience.