Picking up on our discussion of convenience as a pricing strategy let’s examine the results of the convenience audit we provided and address one of the major issues it most likely revealed.
If you did not complete the audit or read part one, you can find those here:
Most likely your audit revealed long wait times to get into the F&I office, as this is a common complaint among customers.
To a customer, time spent is a key determinant of convenience and convenience translates into increased revenue. Identifying the “time suck” allows you to look at the people, resources and processes to make the experience quicker. Typically, the number of F&I managers is one factor driving the problem. As a business owner, I know that you cannot staff continually for peak traffic. So how do you know when to schedule your F&I managers? One suggestion is to get with your Dealer Management System provider and have them show you how to run a report of cars delivered in the last quarter sorting for days of the week and times of the day. You can accomplish the same thing manually by looking at the data and time on deals. Once you see the pattern of deliveries in your dealership, you can optimize F&I coverage. Consider looking at the different components of the F&I managers tasks. How can you use other human resources to remove some of the tasks that are consuming the F&I managers time and increasing the customer’s wait? Can the receptionist load the deals? Can the salesperson disclose the registration paperwork? Next look at the small tasks that consume time. Can delivery packets be pre-made?
Careful attention can produce surprising results but to what benefit? Reducing the customer’s wait time goes along way to satisfying a recurring customer complaint, “it takes too long to buy a car!”. Satisfying this complaint can give you a narrative to use in your advertising that would give you a distinct “why to buy from you”. It would justify a premium price for your better service. Imagine how you could capitalize on this convenience if you could deliver a car in 30 minutes!
Hopefully this post has highlighted some potential ways to increase your F&I office's efficiency. While there is no "one size fits all" solution, we encourage you to take the time to look for solutions that best improve your customer experience and in turn leverage that in your premium pricing. In the future we will give more tips for how you can continue to streamline your customers' experience.
The digital age has been a boon to many in the business, but the complexities of navigating the digital landscape can sometimes be overwhelming. At Edifice we're extremely grateful for every one of Edifice’s many customers. Our role is to help auto dealers generate leads, grow their business, and engage with their brand owners. We supply resources for information, knowledge and best practices on a wide range of automotive industry subjects.
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