Whether you’re a veteran or you’re new to selling cars online, there are tricks of the trade that can help you to be more successful. How you keep pace with the industry, though, can vary with the store where you work. As we learned in the February DealerADvantage DealerPoll, nearly 30 percent of respondents said they have access to an internal training team – almost as many who indicated they were left to their own devices. If the training budget at your store is tight, look for low- and no-cost opportunities to sharpen your skills and keep you at the top of your game. Here are a few resources you’ll want to consider.
If you hope to improve your capabilities in a specific area of the business, you may want to start with the companies that support your store. Cars.com, for example, offers several in-market workshops each week to help attendees – even if they’re not Cars.com customers – implement proven online advertising and internet sales processes. The sessions typically include breakfast or lunch and are focused on practical tactics you can use to fully merchandise your listings and effectively build rapport with prospects. Look into similar programs offered by other service providers.
If scheduling time out of the office for training is difficult, ask your vendors if they offer online options. At Cars.com, the company’s DealerADvantage program includes a monthly newsletter and webinar. Topics cover every aspect of your internet operations.
Industry associations are a great training resource for your dealership. Most offer a variety of training programs and workshops throughout the year, including seminars at their annual events. Additionally, they publish magazines and offer advice on their websites to help keep you informed on industry news and trends and often feature articles on tactics successful internet managers across the country use in their daily operations.
Some organizations to consider include:
- Association of Automotive Internet Sales Professionals. Founded in 2005, AAISP provides opportunities for professional growth and development for dealership-level internet sales professionals.
- American International Automobile Dealers Association. Founded in 1970, AIADA represents the United States’ more than 11,000 international nameplate automobile franchises.
- National Automobile Dealers Association. Founded in 1917, NADA represents more than 19,700 new car and truck dealers, both domestic and international, with more than 43,000 separate franchises.
- National Independent Automobile Dealers Association. Founded in 1946, NIADA represents more than 20,000 independent automobile dealers.
Industry trade shows and conventions also provide you with an excellent opportunity to boost your skill set. These events feature workshops presented by industry leaders that can translate into a healthier bottom line. There also are many internet-focused sessions to consider throughout the year, such as:
- AAISP Annual Convention
- AutoSuccess Synergy Sessions
- Digital Dealer Conference and Exposition
- J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Internet Roundtable
If reading is your preferred method of learning, you’ll want to subscribe to these free magazines. In addition to those offered by associations, there are many additional resources available. Each issue contains advice from industry experts on strategies and tactics you can use in your store to streamline your operations and sell more cars. A sample includes:
- Auto Dealer Monthly
- Automotive Digest
- Auto Remarketing
- Digital Dealer
- Dealer Business Journal
- Dealer Marketing Magazine
- Special Finance
- Used Car News
- Ward’s Dealer Business
Looking for additional tips you can implement in your store today to drive more traffic with your online advertising and desk more deals with your internet sales processes? Check out Cars.com’s DealerCenter. Here, you can read previous editions of our DealerADvantage newsletter or listen to archived recordings of our DealerADvantage LIVE webinar series.