If you ask a General Sales Manager what their biggest fear is, you won’t hear clowns or spiders. No, a GSM’s biggest fear: lot rot.
Dealerships of every size and brand know the tension of moving metal in a timely manner to stay profitable and hit manufacturer sales requirements. The reality of lot time is a constant source of inner dialogue for management; so you can imagine a sales manager’s hesitation to take a risk with their turn rate.
Lance Burris, Vehicle Personalization Expert for Insignia, encourages his customers to strategically preload their new vehicles and backs up his sage advice with hard evidence. Lance admits this recommendation is initially received with pushback. After all, many dealerships believe adding accessories to a vehicle will only increase the amount of time on the lot. The critical element to ordering vehicles with port installed accessories or preloading vehicles on arrival is choosing the right accessories.
One major OE produced a report comparing the amount of time popular vehicles with port installed accessories spent on the dealership lot, versus non-accessorized vehicles. This research showed adding visually enhancing accessories to the vehicle reduced lot time 76% of the time nationally for a popular selling sedan.
The report revealed preloading combinations on a high demand sedan, cut lot time down to less than a fourth of the national average for the same vehicle without accessories.
This combination of floor and trunk mats with protection items like a door edge guard and rear bumper applique visually enhance the vehicle, making it appealing to potential buyers.
Protection items also preserve the life of the vehicle, making it a wise investment for the customer rather than a customization item that varies by taste. Popular trucks of the same OE flew off the lot the same day of arrival with a wide variety of customization items such as tube steps, spray in bedliners, and center consoles.
Lance, who works with all different brands, says it’s changing the look of the vehicle on the lot that proves to be successful regardless of OE.
“Mudguards on most vehicles and cross bars on SUV’s change the look of the vehicle at a low cost to the customer,” Lance explains. “The correct accessories speed up the rate to sell. GSM’s have been convinced that preloading slows down the process. But I show them the amount of days at the dealership compared to similar, non-accessorized vehicles.”
Lance also petitions that properly accessorizing vehicles gives the advantage back to the sales team by providing an opportunity to increase gross profits. Just as base model pricing brings prospects in for a test drive, customers gravitate towards the more appealing, accessorized edition of the same vehicle.
“Sales will always show the accessorized vehicle first. More often than not, the customer falls in love with the accessorized car and doesn’t want to settle for the base model, therefore adding front end gross to the showroom,” Lance says.
Don’t let lot rot scare you. Tap into the multi-billion dollar vehicle personalization industry and ask your consultant how to strategically accessorize on your lot.
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