It’s not uncommon for car dealerships to have a hard time retaining employees for long periods of time. In the United States, the current turnover rate of workers is at a staggering 67% and that number has been increasing over the last ten years.
From our research, it doesn’t look like the employee retention problem isn’t getting any better in the automotive industry. According to Automotive News, on average, a sales associate usually stays at a dealership for just over two years. 45% of dealerships have an average employee retention rate of more than 3 years, but that number drops when we’re looking at employees who work in sales roles.
The reason low retention rates are such a huge problem for car dealerships is that losing employees is a costly loss. Not only are you losing a trained worker, but you risk losing the customers they’ve worked with to the next dealership they choose to work for. When you lose salespeople around the dealership, continuity is lost and your new salespeople have to rebuild relationships with the customers from the beginning. According to Automotive News, a typical dealership loses $500,000 annually to employee turnover. This statistic should make the rest of the blog of interest to you because if you can improve employee retention you can significantly increase overall profitability.
Keeping all of your customer data in a centralized location is the best way to ensure you don’t lose customers if you lose salespeople. If you don’t enforce this policy, many of your salespeople will put their customer’s contact information on their own personal phones and laptops. If that same employee decides to leave, he’s taking all of that customer’s information and potentially taking that customer from you. Enforcing that your employees always store their customer data in a central data location also means you can track when and how your employees are dealing with customers.
It’s not 2002 anymore, so that means you need to stop using old school practices that leave your employees feeling disengaged and bored. What we mean by this is to take advantage of technology by making those repetitive and tedious tasks quick and easy, allowing your employees to focus on the real important duties of their job that can increase their productivity. If you’re giving your employees a bunch of these mundane tasks, you’ll find they don’t have as much energy to put into the tasks that actually convert into sales for your dealership. Now we’re not saying your employees are going to be constantly working on exciting tasks, but we are saying you should do your best to minimize the amount of time they spend on these less exciting tasks.
This is a problem seen in companies in all industries, too often, companies work in silos. The sales team doesn’t work with the marketing team and the marketing team doesn’t work with the development team. Working in silos is not at all conducive to a well-oiled business machine. As a dealership, you need to make sure everyone is communicating and working together to achieve the common goal of the dealership, regardless of what that goal is. A great way to ensure the team is close is by creating a mobile group chat where everyone can communicate. Another great way to ensure team morale is high is to have quarterly outings with the team. Whether it be through a team lunch/dinner or a night out doing a fun activity, anything you can do to bring your team closer together will benefit your dealership significantly.
Finding the right strategy to drive traffic to your dealer website can be challenging. You'll be well on your way to generating more leads if you can persuade visitors to your website who aren't even looking for a car but are merely attempting to find out more information on the car-buying process.
Black Friday is just around the corner (3 weeks away)! It’s one of the busiest days of the year for dealerships because so many people are trying to take advantage of Black Friday car deals. If you can go into Black Friday with a well-thought-out strategy, you can make this year's Black Friday your best one yet.
If you’re able to give customers a car-buying journey that’s easy, transparent and seamless, you’re more likely to close more sales, regardless of the vehicle brand they buy. The vehicle inventory shortage has caused many dealerships to stock vehicles of other brands just so they have vehicles on their lots. This creates the concern for managers that if they’re not selling their brand, how do they sell?