Dealer Ops

What's Your Best Price, Bottom Line

When I was a new sales person, or a “green pea”, customers would ask me, “What was the best price on every vehicle?” I remember telling the customers the MSRP $30,000 and then, in a whisper, telling them I sold one yesterday for two thousand less then our asking price. The customer would look at me and smile. So off on a test drive we would go. After we had completed the demo drive the customer would ask again, “So! Darin come on, tell us, really what’s the best price you can do it for?” And before I knew it, I would be negotiating right on the lot. I would even tell them we could probably take more than two thousand off. These customers loved me. So off to my office we would go. I would then pull out a worksheet and fill in the information on the car and write down the selling price which of course they would question why I wrote that number. Then I would ask them for an offer, wrong move, (see Negotiating Gross Profit posted in the AutoDealerDaily article archives) and then they would say “we want a four thousand-dollar discount”. I would question them on how do they think we can take off four thousand dollars and they would respond with, “come on Darin you can get it for us, just go and tell your manager that’s all we are willing to pay."

So off I would go to see my manager, telling him that these people are going to buy “Now Today” and he says: “tell them we can give them a savings of $400.” I tell my manger that they only want to pay $26,000. He asks me how they arrived at this number.

I would hesitate and then tell him a little white lie, “I told them I could take off at least $1,000 and then they said…”

My manager would then say to me, “Darin, how do you get all of these crazy, low-ball, no gross customers?”

You all know the rest of this story; if we even get the deal, the gross would be so low that it’s almost not even worth doing.

Every customer wants the Best Price. Give it to them, but “DO IT RIGHT”

If there were a prize for the most asked question in car sales, “What’s your Best Price?” would get it hands down. How you handle this question will determine IF you sell the vehicle and IF you maintain any gross profit.

There are three points during your selling steps where you will and do hear this question. The following are some of the best word tracks you can use.

Point 1

When the customer says,

“What’s your best price, bottom line?” during your vehicle presentation, try one of these.

  • Mr. George, I’ll be more then glad to give you the best price, but I have to make sure that we pick the right vehicle for you. OK?
  • Mrs. Allen, my job at the dealership is to help you find a vehicle you really want, and then I’ll give you the best price. OK?
  • Ms. Lee, we can be flexible with our prices, but I have to make sure this is the vehicle you really want. OK?

(Always proceed with your presentation, demo etc…)

Point 2

When the customer says,

“What’s your best price, bottom line?” during or after your demo drive, try one of these.

  • Sure Ms. Lee, when we get back to the dealership, I’ll go and get you the best price. OK?
  • OK! Mr. Gregg, follow me, and we’ll go and get you the best price.
  • Great! Mr. Smith. So you liked the ride and all the features of the vehicle? OK then. Follow me, and I will get you the best price, bottom line.

(Always proceed with selling the dealership, asking for the order, the worksheet, etc…)

Point 3

When the customer asks the world famous question in your office, at the start of your negotiations, just tell them:

  • Great! No problem, I’ll get for you the best price right now. (Proceed with asking for the order, the worksheet and then negotiate.)
Always ask yourself, why is this customer buying from my dealership?

Darin’s Wrap Up

It all boils down to timing and wording. I know not every deal is or will be a high grosser, but if you hold on until the timing is right, you will be able to increase your average gross by $500. Practice your timing; when and what you say, and how you say it. Have fun and keep your eye on the ball.

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