Steve Stauning's Blog (43)

Attribution? Some Dealers Still Don’t Even Track Leads and Sales!

Attribution? Some Dealers Still Don’t Even Track Leads and Sales!

There’s been a push for over a year among some automotive digital marketers to shift dealers’ focus away from traditional return-on-investment measurements (like leads, calls and sales) toward something called multi-touch attribution.

While this isn’t an…

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Added by Steve Stauning on January 2, 2019 at 7:33am — No Comments

Shorten Your Road-to-the-Sale or Die!

Shorten Your Road-to-the-Sale or Die!

(Okay, perhaps you won’t die, but can we all agree it’s finally time to drastically shorten the old-school road-to-the-sale and truly improve the customer’s buying experience?)

In Ernest Hemingway’s 1926 novel, The Sun Also Rises, we read the following dialogue:…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 29, 2018 at 7:00am — No Comments

Five Quick & Easy Rules That Will Grow Your Sales

Five Quick & Easy Rules That Will Grow Your Sales

Sometimes it’s easy in automotive retail to overthink this whole sales thing. Confusing concepts ranging from multi-touch attribution to your VDP strategy can boggle the mind of the average sales manager; all while seemingly moving no more metal than the confusing concepts…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 21, 2018 at 5:44am — No Comments

Change the Experience; Change the Results

Change the Experience; Change the Results

The studies are clear:

  • According to DrivingSales, 99% of buyers expect a hassle when they start the car buying process; and
  • According to AutoTrader, only about 1 in 235 buyers actually likes the current car buying process.

While consumers have nearly…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 14, 2018 at 8:09am — No Comments

It’s a Flat Vehicle Market! Oh the Humanity!

It’s a Flat Vehicle Market! Oh the Humanity!

Newsflash: America has been in a relatively flat new vehicle market since early 2016; though apparently this event caught many dealers, the public dealer groups, and the OEMs off guard. Between increases in discounting to reports of some bloating inventories, the growth party enjoyed for nearly a…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 7, 2018 at 6:43am — No Comments

Solve Dealership Turnover Issues and Everything Else is a Cakewalk

Quick… make a list of the top five issues that are negatively impacting your dealership’s profitability that also have little to do with sales team turnover.

If you’re like many of the dealers I’ve spoken with over the last year, your list probably contains items like these:

  • Mediocre Online Reputation/CSI
  • Higher Discounting/Lower…
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Added by Steve Stauning on November 1, 2018 at 7:57am — No Comments

Your Local Car Salesman Just Might Be Helping in the Fight Against Childhood Cancer

Your Local Car Salesman Just Might Be Helping in the Fight Against Childhood Cancer

September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and $10 from every copy of ‘Assumptive Selling’ sold this month goes straight to the PaulieStrong Foundation

 

Given nearly 16,000 children are…

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Added by Steve Stauning on September 1, 2018 at 9:27am — No Comments

‘Assumptive Selling’ Creates a Better Car-Buying Experience (and This Month, it May Help Create a Better Experience for a Worthy Couple)

$10 from every copy of ‘Assumptive Selling’ sold on Amazon in August 2018 goes straight to help Bryan & Tamarra Armstrong

 ...

Tamarra Armstrong, wife of the consummate Car Guy, Bryan, suffers from a very rare disease known as Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome (SMAS). Because this is a disease that affects fewer than 3 in every 1,000 people, the treatment options are limited; and all are very expensive.

“Bryan and Tamarra have always been supportive of anyone in…

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Added by Steve Stauning on August 1, 2018 at 8:15am — No Comments

‘Assumptive Selling’ Creates a Better Car-Buying Experience (and This Month, it May Help Create a Better Experience for a Worthy Couple)

$10 from every copy of ‘Assumptive Selling’ sold on Amazon in August 2018 goes straight to help Bryan & Tamarra Armstrong

 ...

Tamarra Armstrong, wife of the consummate Car Guy, Bryan, suffers from a very rare disease known as Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome (SMAS). Because this is a disease that affects fewer than 3 in every 1,000 people, the treatment options are limited; and all are very expensive.

“Bryan and Tamarra have always been supportive of anyone in…

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Added by Steve Stauning on August 1, 2018 at 8:15am — No Comments

Why I Still Write About Process (and Why You Should Care)

Yesterday, I posted a short article about perfecting the automotive internet sales process and a LinkedIn connection asked, “Why do you still write so much about process?”

Why I Still Write About Process (and Why You Should Care)

With all the cool,…

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Added by Steve Stauning on October 25, 2017 at 7:19am — No Comments

Chatbots are Here, They’re Necessary, and They’re Surprisingly Inexpensive

Chatbots are Here, They’re Necessary, and They’re Surprisingly Inexpensive …oh, and for car dealers, chatbots are moving metal!

Time for some quick level-setting with the car dealer readers out there:

  1. Facebook is not going away;
  2. Most of your customers are already there;
  3. Your kitten pictures and inventory vomits aren’t being read; and
  4. Facebook Ads work, but you need to start communicating with these prospects!

Because…

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Added by Steve Stauning on April 4, 2017 at 6:59pm — 2 Comments

Hey Car Dealer: Stop Letting Carvana (and Everyone Else) Define You!

Hey Car Dealer: Stop Letting Carvana (and Everyone Else) Define You! 

If you believe the corporate manifestos and marketing pitches of every automotive retail-related startup for the last twenty years, then you’d think America’s car dealerships are staffed by a bunch of puppy-kicking thieves providing zero value as they work overtime to deliver the absolute…

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Added by Steve Stauning on March 27, 2017 at 3:00pm — 1 Comment

Culture, Customers and Your Dealership in a Flattening Market

If you examine the average dealership’s sales since 2010, you’ll notice that they’ve steadily been growing year-over-year. Of course, the average dealer has been growing because the market has been growing; and while everyone has seen sales increases over the last several years, only a small percentage of dealers have experienced an actual increase in their…

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Added by Steve Stauning on February 15, 2017 at 5:30pm — 1 Comment

The Leads Are Dead

“The Leads Are Dead”

According to those who struggle to generate consumer sales leads for businesses, “Sales leads are dead.” Furthermore, these (interestingly, mostly digital) marketers claim that today’s connected consumers are simply unwilling to trade their personal information online in exchange for some promise of pricing or other product…

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Added by Steve Stauning on January 26, 2017 at 6:30pm — 1 Comment

The Lead is the Shizznizzle!

Lately there have been some pretty hip writers talking down the old, dusty website lead as if dealers should forego this antique in favor of the more Avant-garde “engagement” or the equally vaporous “VDP views.” Their argument – when they bother to attempt one – basically boils down to “consumers don’t submit leads; they engage.”

Okay. Great. But, um,…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 18, 2016 at 5:31pm — No Comments

The ONLY Goals of Your Website

I hate to break it to you, but if you run a for-profit business – like a car dealership – then your website has just two important goals:

  • Goal #1 – Attract Visitors
  • Goal #2 – Convert Visitors

Sorry, that’s it. Attracting and converting visitors are the only real value your website provides and the ONLY goals you should be…

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Added by Steve Stauning on June 30, 2016 at 2:44pm — 1 Comment

Ask for Referrals? If I was the Dealer, I’d Prefer You Ask for a Little Yelp

Among the many activities I complete in advance of a dealer consulting visit is a thorough analysis of their online reputation, as this can often help define much of the visit’s focus. During one such analysis this week, I discovered the following for an upcoming dealer visit (numbers have been estimated to protect the dealer’s identity):

  • Google –…
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Added by Steve Stauning on May 7, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Is Duplicitous Pricing Good Business?

In a transparent, information-rich world where showrooming is commonplace, a pricing tactic used by many retailers seems strangely shortsighted. For lack of a better term, let’s call this shortsighted pricing practice “Duplicitous Pricing” or DP for short.

Simply put, DP occurs when a retailer posts one price in their store while maintaining a different price somewhere else – like the Internet. Interestingly, the practice of DP didn’t originate with the Web; as it was fairly…

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Added by Steve Stauning on March 27, 2016 at 4:37pm — 7 Comments

Is Your Online Service Scheduling Application Chasing Your Customers Elsewhere?

Let me start this post by stating unequivocally that I am big fan of online service scheduling applications for car dealers. When set up correctly, these little tools can save you and your customers the headaches and hassles of numerous service phone calls.

When set up correctly.

Without getting into the weeds, suffice it to say that online service scheduling is a great way to balance the load and maximize the labor in your shop without having to employ a service receptionist…

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Added by Steve Stauning on November 23, 2015 at 12:41pm — 5 Comments

The Great BDC Robbery: How Reconciliation Allows Your BDC to Steal from You

If you're a GM or dealer principal I have to ask: Do you have any idea what your BDC is doing right now? 

A few weeks ago a general manager I’ve known for some time was bragging about the performance of his group’s Centralized BDC. He was almost gushing about how well they were doing and how there was no conflict between the BDC and the various floor teams. He told me…

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Added by Steve Stauning on October 23, 2015 at 2:12pm — 1 Comment

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