Car Salesman Tips

How to Sell
Cars Like a Pro!

Car salesman tips and techniques to sell more and earn more!
Learn how to sell cars with these fundamental rules of the road.

Whether you are currently a salesman / saleswoman, or aspire to become one, you must know the basics to succeed. In fact, you must not only know the fundamentals of car sales, but you must follow them day in and day out, or your sales will suffer.

I've seen too many salespeople come into the business, follow these rules and make very good money to only (usually 4-6 months in) begin to stray from these basics and begin to fail. This eventually leads to theme leaving the business and what could have been a very prosperous career.

There is something about that 4-6 month mark where something changes and not for the better in these cases. I'm not sure if it's arrogance, lack of discipline to adhere to the basics or something else, but it can take a $6,000 income down to $2,000 quickly.

No need to worry it's easy to get that missing $4,000 back! You just have to get back to the basics of how to sell cars.

So let's get to it...

Car Salesman Tips

1. Work for a Good Dealership
Some dealerships promote and/or practice unethical car sales. In addition, there are dealership that make no time or monetary commitment to the continuous training of its sales force.

Car Salesman Tips: Don't work for a dealership that promotes or allows unethical practices. The dealerships name will eventual be smeared as will yours. You might make some money today, but your long term future in this business will always be a grind.

Also a dealership that doesn't believe in the growth of their salespeople is a worthless establishment that obviously has little to no business sense. There are many quality dealerships that understand your success translates into their success.

2. Use a Successful Selling System
A successful selling system will complement all the car salesman tips on this and other pages, while giving you a very solid base to help guide you through the sales process.

Car Salesman Tips: Don't just wing it from customer to customer and hope for the best. Of course, sometimes you'll need to adjust to the customer, but you want a solid system that you'll use as your base. This will keep you working to your end goal at every step...To sell the car!

Most car dealers use a 10 or 11 step system to sell cars and I've outlined each step here How to Sell Cars in detail.

3. Practice, Drill, Rehearse (PDR)
You've found a great selling system, read through all the material you could find on the subject and are ready to sell cars. Only problem is that in an hour you'll haven't forgotten 90% of it.

Car Salesman Tips: You've got to practice, drill and rehearse what you've learned. You don't want to wait until a customer objects before you use an objection handling technique for the first time. It will more than likely sound canned and forced. The quicker and more confident you are with your responses the more professional and competent you will appear.

4. Be Professional
Can you imagine what you'd think of someone trying to sell you something in a professional role that was wearing wrinkled, smelly clothes, breath of death, cussing like a sailor (no offense sailors, just a saying) and didn't look like they'd showered or shaved in a week? Probably wouldn't build much trust right?

Car Salesman Tips: Being professional and being a stiff are not necessarily one in the same. Feel free to be yourself with customers, but make sure you take care of your appearance:

  • No foul language
  • Smell good, but don't over do it
  • Wear clean, pressed clothes with no stains
  • Shave. Facial hair is okay, but 5 o'clock shadows at 7:00am just looks lazy and unkempt.
  • Don't talk on your cell phone in front of a customer, that's just rude and let's them know they are not very important to you
  • Smokers, wash your hands and eat a mint before meeting customers. People that don't like the smell of smoke, really don't like the smell of smoke!

I think you catch my drift here, check your appearance and mind your manners.

5. Know Your Inventory
Customer: "I am looking for a 4 door, white car, with under 50,000 miles and in the $12,000 range, what do you have like that?"

Salesman: "I'm not sure, but it's a scorching 106 degrees with 100% humidity, why don't we go walk the lot for an hour and see what we've got?"

Car Salesman Tips: Ehhhhh! Wrong answer. Not only will this inconvenience the customer, which will annoy them, but you run the risk of losing control right from the beginning. Before you know it the customer will be bouncing from 2 door coupes, to one ton trucks and controlling you.

Know your inventory! The bigger the dealership the more often you should walk the lot and see what's in stock. If you work at a store that sells 30 cars a day, then the inventory is probably turned every one to two weeks. Walk it daily to know what's new.

This also benefits you in that the newer the vehicle the higher profit you stand to make. I've made a small fortune selling cars off the back lot...

6. Know Your Product and Your Competitions
If you work at a Ford dealership and a customer wants to know the towing capacity of your F150 truck vs. a Chevy 1500 and your best answer is we can go look it up on the Internet or I'll ask my manager, then you've got problems.

Car Salesman Tips:
Know what you're selling and how it stacks up to the competition. If you work for a Ford dealership, then definitely know Ford first, but also know Chevy and Dodge.

If you work for Toyota, then know all you can about Toyota and Honda as well.

Some customers will want to know some pretty intense stuff and you don't need to know everything, but you must have a solid knowledge of what you are selling. Features and Benefits is what it's all about selling cars. Look at this feature...Here's how it benefits you Mr. Customer.

7. Fall in Love With the Phone
Without strong phone skills you can still be a good car salesman, but it's more work and if there is not much lot traffic, then you stand to take a big pay cut.

Car Salesman Tips: Love the phone! Strong phone skills for both inbound and outbound calls can explode your income while minimizing effort. Learn to take inbound calls and convert those to appointments. Learn to make outbound calls and get people to get excited and want to listen to what you have to say so that you are not hung up on.

This will definitely lead to more appointments and for those of you that aren't in the know, appointments convert to sales at twice the rate of normal lot traffic.

8. Don't Push, Pull the Sale Closed
Pushy salesman turn most customers off. In fact, it p****es most customers off. Don't be pushy! It may pick up a sale here and there, but will lose you many, many more in the long run.

Car Salesman Tips: Using the phrase pull the sale closed is the equivalent of leading a horse by the reins vs. pushing from behind. You'll get a lot less resistance leading (pulling) a horse by the reins, then you will pushing it.

An even better example that you can try right now is to take a piece of string and lay it out in a straight line. Try pushing it from the tip closest to you. How effective was that? It probably just crumpled up, huh?

Now try pulling it from that same end. Much different result and the string followed your finger in a nice, neat straight line wherever you wanted it to go. Pull don't Push!

9. Talk to Everyone in the Group
Do not single out the man, only talking to him as the decision maker. If you do this it is a big mistake that will certainly cost your car sales.

Car Salesman Tips: Try to involve everyone involved in the transaction even including the kids. Anyone that may to some degree influence, persuade or demand the car be bought. By the way, studies have shown that women have the final say in over 75% of all car buying transactions.

Remember the last thing you said to her? Wasn't it "Hi Mrs. Smith nice to meet you." And now you can say your final goodbyes to both Mr. and Mrs. Smith as they get into their old car and drive off. Be sure to share time with all involved.

10. Ask Questions and Listen
Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk...Some of us like to do it more than others and it's okay to do your fair share of talking when selling cars, but there is a point when you will need to ask a question and than, to be quite frank, shut up.

Car Salesman Tips: There are certain times when it is very important to ask some simple, but important questions and if you don't truly listen to what the answer is you may as well not have asked the questions in the first place.

There are two key times this comes into play and a couple of more subtle times as well. One of the key times is during your fact finding and the other is during negotiations when you are trying to close the deal.

11. You Sold the Car Now What
Of course you'll get the car ready for delivery and make sure your customers have all and know all they need to before driving the car home. Then you'll say your congratulations and off they go...Not so fast, if you let them go now you could also let them leave with 2, 5, 10 potential future customers.

Car Salesman Tips: This is an excellent opportunity for you to create some additional business for yourself and it's probably the time that your current customers will like you the most. Always ask them who they know that is currently in the market for a new car. Family, friends, coworkers, etc.

Have them get them on the phone right then and there. Encourage them with a $100, $200 or more (or less) spiff that you'll pay to them if someone they refer buys a car from you. I've seen this sell cars like crazy when worked right, but most salesman completely skip this step...?

12. Don't Believe in the Be Back Bus
The Be Back Bus is as real as the Jackalope. Researchers will capture Big Foot before this bus ever returns to your dealership. Don't fall for the very real customer that uses the very imaginary words "I'll Be Back."

It's highly unlikely you'll ever see them again unless you owe them money, have the keys to their car or if you are selling a very rare one of a kind car.

Car Salesman Tips: Avoid the "I'll Be Back" saying by adhering to Sales Tip #2 above. You must learn a sales system that works and keeps the sale moving forward All the Way to Closing the Deal that same day.

13. Lucky 13 and You'll Soon Know Why
I've saved the best for last! Newbies pay very close attention and those of you currently struggling to close deals the way you used to... Stop over educating your customers out on the lot!!! You are breaking and abandoning one of the most Cardinal rules of car sales if you do this. You WILL suffer financially as well.

Car Salesman Tips: Your job is to sell cars and not discuss things on the lot like:

  • What the best price is
  • What monthly payments will be
  • How much down payment they will need
  • What free stuff they can or cannot get
  • and on and on and on...

You have Finance Managers to cover the finance stuff and sales managers to cover the pricing and free stuff stuff. Selling cars is a team sport and if you want to close more deals and make more money, then you do your job and let them do theirs. Buck the system and trust it will buck you back! Just go with the flow...

Now that you've reviewed these car salesman tips, you should have a very solid foundation and strong understanding of how to sell cars successfully and for max profits. Now let's return from Car Salesman Tips to the car salesman main page to start learning some sales strategies and closing techniques.

Or you can... Go to Insider Car Buying Tips home

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