Dealers double down on ripping customer off by Chris Justice

A lot of Car Dealers have graduated from "sleight of hand" advertising to full blown false advertising.

In the mist of shrinking sales and declining revenue, some dealers have forgone tomorrow’s business for today’s floor traffic.

In what appear to be a price war one would believe this to be a great time for customers to find great deals. Although this may be true, many would-be customers are being manipulated by deals that are too good to be true.

A large dealer in my area spends a lot of money advertising low prices on new vehicles. I mean the lowest in the state, by a large margin.

Customers walk into what appears to be a deal of a life time. Everything is good until they review the first numbers. They quickly discover that the advertised price included a $500 college rebate which they don't qualify for. An $800 owner loyalty rebate they don't get. A $2000 rebate if they give up the special financing. $800 destination, $300 for nitrogen in the tires which has to be added back, $300 military discount, $250 for etch and on and on. That's almost a $5000 difference.

This dealer would say that in the tiny print it reads "includes all rebates and discounts" is enough.

This business model won't stand long term. It may bring in traffic and some do end up buying after negotiating however the ones you sell will not be back. Nor will they refer anyone to you. Your sales people get burned out from trying to intelligently explain the deceptive ad and quit.

Dealers who think long term look for study consistent grow. They put customers first. They realize that buy killing them with kindness, being professional and by offering a fair deal, they will be very successful.

Dealers should look towards technology as a means to generate traffic and leave the gimmicks alone

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