Simple question: Are you a seller or a buyer?
Don’t overthink it. Just answer the question. My dealership is a… If you’re a dealer who believes your preowned business is absolutely critical to a successful bottom line, your answer was “both.” Right? Otherwise, you’re not really a preowned dealership because you don’t have the inventory nor the commitment to fill that void. If you said ‘both’ – or are now changing your answer because in your mind you are a preowned dealer - let me ask you a follow-up question. If I went onto your most visible marketing channel – the homepage of your website – would I come to that same conclusion? Would I agree you are not just a seller but a buyer of used units? That really, you’re not a motorcycle dealership but a preowned marketplace.
In other words, is there something big and obvious on your homepage indicating you are a buyer of used units? I asked this question recently as part of the Dominion Powersports Solutions’ Pulse Webinar on preowned units. We surveyed a diverse group of dealers (both H-D and metric) and asked them, “Do you have a noticeable message on your homepage indicating your desire to buy used units?” Less than 40 percent said yes.
What’s extremely strange about that is 80 percent of those dealers said they wish they had more used inventory, not less. So put those two answers together, and you come to this conclusion: We want more used inventory, but we don’t want to tell anybody unless they happen to walk into the store. Really? My educated guess is if I asked most of you if your sales folks are trained to ask for trade-ins you would say, “Absolutely.” But if I asked you if your website homepage clearly communicated that same desire for used units – not to mention your Facebook site! – you would probably say, “I don’t think so.” And that’s not good, considering your marketing efforts reach far more people than your sales staff does. Each and every week.
My advice: Correct this. Make sure your marketing voice echoes the ones on the showroom floor.