Bad Credit? Time to Roll out the Red Carpet

The car business is a people business. Because of that, dealerships see customers from a variety of backgrounds, income levels and credit histories. And, for a salesperson or manager, there’s nothing more disheartening than to spend a lot of time with a customer just to discover that they are credit challenged. Despite that, many dealerships will do their best to land the customer on the right vehicle, structure a deal for a subprime lender of theirs or, at the very least, try to see if the customer has a co-signer.


The problem is that in some dealerships, the minute it’s discovered that a customer has poor credit, they are all of a sudden treated like a second-class citizen. However, the fact is that in this customer lies not just a problem, but also an opportunity.


Salespeople – whether they are Internet or floor sales – are taught to “just get them in.” If you have a BDC, that’s also their job. Many dealerships broadcast advertising messages dangling hope to people with challenged credit and welcome them in. Why? Because oftentimes customers with challenged credit will let you slap them into any car you have and tend to be more agreeable to terms.


But, while this is absolutely true, it is sad to see what actually happens far too many times in this process. When presented with a customer with challenged credit, all of a sudden the customer experience changes from being welcomed with open arms and “Of course we can help you!” to a rather demeaning inquisition. Closers are taught to “beat up” these customers. To point out and question every derogatory item on the customer’s credit reports. Many times, if it’s determined that there is a possibility that the customer could get financed, managers direct the salespeople to show a specific car. Typically, one that the dealership wants to get rid of, regardless of the needs of the customer.


And this is where the problem lies.


Credit challenged customers come from all walks of life. Some have poor credit because of circumstances that were beyond their control. Some earned that poor credit. Regardless of what the case may be, these customers are the easiest customers to convert into brand advocates and oftentimes the most profitable. Typically, these credit challenged customers are highly appreciative. They honestly feel as if you helped them – and you did. These customers will tell everyone they know that you helped them. The next thing you know all of their friends and relatives are calling you asking for your help. They will climb mountain peaks and scream out praises about your dealership. And, with social media and the power of online reviews, this can have a huge impact on your dealership. In fact, studies show that as many as 70% of car buyers are influenced by dealership reviews.


Remember – EVERY customer experience is important. As consumers now learn most things about your dealership online before stepping a foot on your lot, these online reviews again come into play – make sure every customer is happy enough to sing your praises! Your reputation and reviews can be hugely impacted by pre-judging customers and treating them poorly.


 Not all customers with bad credit stay customers with bad credit. Many turn their credit around and they very well may have begun that turnaround with you. These customers remember that when they were down, you helped them. In return, they will remain loyal to you for life.


So, if you’re going to welcome and invite credit challenged people to your dealership, make sure they get an incredible buying experience -- just as you would give someone with perfect credit. That perfect credit customer knows that they can buy a car anyplace, anytime. Customers with bad credit are simply looking for someone who can help them.


Be that someone and you’ll discover that simply treating all customers with a great customer experience, regardless of credit score, can lead you to increased customer retention, referrals and loyalty. After all, today it is all about the customer experience – one that can quickly get broadcast all over social media – so make sure it’s a good one, each and every time!


Views: 72


You need to be a member of to add comments!



DealerELITE created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Profile Icon via Twitter
RT @SteveStauning: Checking out "Real Social Selling" on @dealerELITE:
Twitter37 minutes ago · Reply · Retweet
Jeff Cowan posted a blog post

Write Service Podcast: Episode 45- The Holes in Your Process

This week, Jeff continues the discussion on having a true process on your service drive. Some of…See More
1 hour ago
Todd Smith posted a blog post
3 hours ago
Black Book posted a blog post


Vehicle Values With Historical Performance Can Greatly Increase Accuracy in Claims…See More
3 hours ago
Holly Markel posted a video

3 Keys to Developing Employees on the Phone (Part 2)

CallRevu Vice President of Customer Experience Holly Markel shares the first of three keys to developing your staff to handle the phones properly in part 2 o...
3 hours ago
Profile Icon via Twitter
Checking out "Real Social Selling" on @dealerELITE:
Twitter3 hours ago · Reply · Retweet
Steve Stauning's video was featured

Real Social Selling

If your salespeople aren't driving their own Up Bus, they're not doing everything they can to sell 20, 30 or even 40 units a month. Send them a link to this 49-minute lesson where they'll learn all they need to start generating real referrals from…
3 hours ago
John Sternal posted a blog post

August Auto Lease Prices Increase By Up To 54% On Several Vehicles

Several Brands Increase Lease Prices by up to 54% on Vehicles of All Sizes as New Model-Year Units…See More
4 hours ago
Profile Icon via Twitter
Dealer Elite Daily News is out! #automotivesales #carsales
Twitter4 hours ago · Reply · Retweet
Steve Stauning posted a video

How To Sell Cars on Facebook: Real Social Selling

Originally recorded live as part of the Undeniable Advantage Live Video Webcast Series. Social Selling is real and it's happening today! Right now, dynamic, ...
4 hours ago
Thomas F. Jung posted a blog post
5 hours ago
Simon Hopes posted a blog post

Best Run about Boats For Family

If you are searching for a boat that is great for the whole family but it is also quite satisfying…See More
5 hours ago
Profile Icon via Twitter
RT @Automotive_News: AutoNation's CEO says the industry is 'freaking out' about Trump's tariffs
Twitter15 hours ago · Reply · Retweet
Profile Icon via Twitter
RT @Automotive_News: Automakers offer financial assistance to victims of Hurricane Florence
Twitter15 hours ago · Reply · Retweet
Profile Icon via Twitter
RT @dealerrefresh: Are OEM's forcing you to put codes in your website? -
Twitter15 hours ago · Reply · Retweet
Profile Icon via Twitter
RT @SteveStauning: The Dreaded “Just Looking” – How to Overcome Objections on the Lot #automotivesales #carsales #…
Twitter15 hours ago · Reply · Retweet

de sponsor

Get Newsletter

dE Sponsor

© 2018   Created by DealerELITE.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service