Chris Vitale's Blog (110)

HOW MUCH IS YOUR AUTO BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CENTER MAKING YOU—AND HOW MUCH SHOULD IT MAKE?

Many dealerships have built an auto business development center to drive appointment rates and generate more sales. The leading dealers are making money hand over fist on these investments—but it doesn’t feel like your BDC is delivering the same for you. 



What are they doing differently that’s working so much better?

Measuring…

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 20, 2024 at 12:48pm — No Comments

YOU HAVE A BDC BECAUSE IT’S WHAT YOU WERE TOLD TO DO—BUT IS IT DOING OK OR AMAZINGLY WELL?

Your business development center is the lifeblood of your dealership. Between channeling leads to your sales teams, setting appointments with customers, and staying ahead of customer needs, there isn’t a corner of your business it doesn’t impact. 

But it doesn’t generate profit all by itself, so it can be hard to understand how it’s performing. What…

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 18, 2024 at 11:33am — No Comments

HOW PHONE MYSTERY SHOPS CAN SHARPEN YOUR SALES TEAM

Even in today’s fast-paced digital world, the phone is still the most important business generator for every successful dealership. That means your team’s phone skills must be razor-sharp to capitalize on every revenue opportunity. 

Unfortunately, these critical phone interactions can be hard to evaluate, and a few small but important details can be…

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 13, 2024 at 10:53am — No Comments

PUTTING YOUR BDC ON AUTOPILOT—WHILE MAXIMIZING THE RESULTS

If you’re concerned as an owner or GM that you’ve been putting too much time into your BDC, you might be right. A business development center is not the type of department you should need to micromanage. With the right manager and training partner, your BDC should be driving revenues in every department, and all you’ll have to do is make a few big-picture decisions here and there. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 11, 2024 at 10:14am — No Comments

Is Your Business Development Center a Zero or a Hero for Your Dealership?

Business development centers are the cornerstone of modern dealership revenue strategies. When these engines are finely tuned, they’re responsible for generating game-changing appointment rates and capitalizing on opportunities that many seasoned sales professionals didn’t even realize were there for the taking. 

That’s why, if you look at…

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 6, 2024 at 10:14am — No Comments

IS YOUR BDC AGENT EFFECTIVE? HERE’S HOW TO KNOW AND WHAT TO DO

Now that your Business Development Center is up and running, how can you tell if your BDC agent or team is making the most of your revenue opportunities? The nation’s leading dealerships always bring in a professional training partner on day one because it allows these business machines to be largely self-driving, but that doesn’t mean a GM can fall asleep at the…

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Added by Chris Vitale on June 4, 2024 at 11:02am — No Comments

SETTING UP A CAR DEALERSHIP BDC WAS THE FIRST STEP—NOW MAKE IT BETTER

Setting up a car dealership BDC is a big step into the future of the business, but there’s still plenty of work to be done. BDCs are incredible revenue generators, but your people will need ongoing training to keep their skills sharp. Industry trends are also a moving target, and that means editing phone scripts and improving strategies to maximize its value. 

That being said, your BDC should be designed to operate with minimal oversight. You’ve got a lot going on just keeping the…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 30, 2024 at 12:41pm — No Comments

YOUR BDC MANAGER DOES THINGS SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY—BUT DO YOU KNOW WHAT THEY WANT AND NEED?

Your new business development center is finally up and running! You’ve hired a great manager, and they’re already making a big impact on key metrics like lead generation, appointment set rate, and monthly sales numbers. 

Implementing this new strategy has been the best decision you ever made, but your BDC manager is not a miracle worker. They’re going…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 28, 2024 at 8:16pm — No Comments

EVALUATE YOUR DEALERSHIP SALES TEAM PERFORMANCE

Evaluating your dealership’s sales team performance may seem as simple as looking at the bottom line, but in today’s market, it’s actually a very complicated equation. The top competitors are utilizing every tool and strategy at their disposal to maximize revenue, including sales scripts, BDCs, and extending vehicle sales conversations to integrate other services and drive return business. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 23, 2024 at 12:30pm — No Comments

TRACKING SALES PERFORMANCE WITH MYSTERY SHOPS

The reports and spreadsheets that flood your desk are not the only tools you should be using while tracking sales performance KPIs. They are highly valuable, but do they really deliver the whole picture? 

Nope! Not by a long shot. And while receipt, phone, and internet surveys can help bridge the gap in some ways, they are very old-school and…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 21, 2024 at 12:31pm — No Comments

I Don’t Care, Do You?

In the fast-paced, competitive world of car sales, the attitude of "I don’t care, do you?" has become all too common. This mentality is particularly disheartening for sales consultants who genuinely care about their job, their customers, and their success. However, the lack of proper training and resources can make it incredibly challenging for them to maintain that enthusiasm and dedication. This article explores the underlying issues and what it will take to bring about meaningful…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 19, 2024 at 3:30pm — No Comments

7 WAYS TO GIVE YOUR SALES TEAM MOTIVATION TO SUCCEED

Your people are the heartbeat of your company’s success. Without them, your business would close tonight, but it’s not enough to simply keep them grinding toward monthly sales goals by dangling the same old carrots. Sales team motivation is built around shared vision, enthusiasm for the industry, the potential for career advancement, and achievable goals that translate to dollar bills in everyone’s pocket. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 16, 2024 at 9:59am — No Comments

When Car Dealerships Fail: A Frustrated Customer's Tale of Ignored Questions and Nonsensical Emails

In the world of car shopping, a common frustration has emerged among prospects: dealerships that can't be bothered to answer your questions but have no problem flooding your inbox with unwanted marketing emails. This scenario often feels like a slap in the face to customers who simply want straightforward information, only to be met with a barrage of automated responses. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 14, 2024 at 9:35pm — No Comments

HOW TO IMPROVE SALES PERFORMANCE FOR YOUR DEALERSHIP

Let’s face it: every dollar you invest in your dealership needs to come with a return, and that goes double for the money you spend on boosting sales performance. As competition between dealerships is becoming ever fiercer, savvy owners and GMs are looking for new and innovative ways to increase profits with the most cost-effective strategies. 

There…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 14, 2024 at 10:41am — No Comments

Behind the Scenes: Where Deals Die

You wouldn't believe the horror stories I hear from friends and family about car shopping. But guess what? They're not the only ones. As a lifelong retailer, I've seen firsthand the internal circus creating such a frustrating customer experience. Here's a dirty little secret: a lot of the blame falls on lazy managers who simply don't care. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 10, 2024 at 3:01pm — No Comments

7 RESULTS A PHONE MYSTERY SHOPPER CAN PRODUCE WITH YOUR TEAM

As showroom traffic slowly drops and customer habits change, your sales team’s phone skills are becoming more important than ever for maximizing revenue and hitting monthly sales goals. Customer service, in-person appointments, long-term loyalty, and higher sales and service engagement are all critical benefits you’re relying on your team’s phone skills to…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 9, 2024 at 10:18am — No Comments

The Exhausting Reality of Car Shopping

When I recently set out to purchase a new car, I was starkly reminded of the vast chasm between the ease of digital browsing and the actual car-buying process. My career as a sales consultant had not prepared me for the frustrating reality faced by today's car buyers—a journey marred by outdated sales tactics, poor communication, and a startling lack of transparency. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 7, 2024 at 8:59am — No Comments

STRUGGLING DEALERSHIP SALES TEAM? YOU NEED A MYSTERY SHOPPER!

You’ve been going over your dealership sales team’s KPIs and it doesn’t look good. You’ve been spending on training, but nothing seems to work. What’s going on? 

It could be any number of things, but there are a few obvious places to start. In most cases, revenue opportunities are left on the table because of inefficient or dated sales practices that…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 7, 2024 at 8:36am — No Comments

Unlocking the Truth: The Real Cost Behind 'Special' Online Pricing

Are we still pretending that "unlock the [dealer name] price" is a treasure trove hidden on a dealership website? It’s 2024, and the cat is well out of the bag: most often, the price you see online is the price you get. Yet, the charade continues. Customers click through hoops hoping to reveal a special sales price, only to find it layered with conditional discounts—OEM Loyalty Cash, Military Savings, or OEM Finance cash—that may not apply to them at all. And let's not forget about…

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 5, 2024 at 8:48pm — No Comments

WHAT IS MYSTERY SHOPPING FOR DEALERSHIP SALES TEAMS?

One major component of any automotive Owner’s or GM’s due diligence is a constant and ongoing evaluation of your sales team members’ skills, growth, consistency, and quality of delivery. If you don’t invest in training upkeep, their skills slowly become outdated and develop holes, and that means one thing for your dealership: lost revenue opportunities. …

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Added by Chris Vitale on May 3, 2024 at 12:01pm — No Comments

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