Car sales professionals are often the butt of jokes, but nothing could be less deserved. The majority of the men and women who sell cars are hardworking, personable, compassionate and creative. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to do well in this career. It isn't for everyone and one should be warned of this before pursuing it. If you’re looking to join the ranks of this challenging and rewarding profession, here are a few traits that will help you in your auto sales career:
Be professional. A good salesperson acts in a professional manner, no make what he or she is selling. That makes that you should dress and act professionally, present sales information in a clean, not sloppy, manner, be on time and keep your appointments.
Be able to think on your feet. Every sales situation is different. A good salesperson is able to adapt and be able to address any issues or challenges the customer brings up. A canned sales pitch rarely works in auto sales. This is especially true when it comes to car sales. People don't want to hear the same old snake oil sales speak they hear on the infomercial.
Be a listener. A good salesperson does more listening than talking. If you pay attention to what the customer is saying, they will tell you want they want to buy. The trick is the car they really want to buy may not be the car they came to look at. If they ask a question about something you should be able to answer it. If you can't, the last thing you want to do is make it up.
Be courteous. Nobody likes a rude salesperson. Nice goes a long way in the auto sales industry. Everyone has dealt with the pushy and rude sales person and it is not a very pleasant experience. Please, just don't.
Be thick-skinned. The conventional wisdom in sales is that for every “yes,” you’ll hear nine “no’s.” Auto sales is no exception. You need to be able to glide past those rejections and move on to the next potential buyer.
Be self-confident. Customers like a winner. If you exude confidence, your sales figures will reflect that. If you know what you're talking about the customer is likely to pick up on it and in turn you're more likely to close the sale. Have faith in yourself that you know more than anyone on this particular subject matter.
Be open-minded. One of the biggest mistakes an auto salesperson can make is to judge the customer’s wants based on his own desires and/or budget. Just because you would never spend the money for all of the extras, doesn’t mean that your customer wouldn’t be happy doing so. Don’t pre-judge.
Be a fast learner. The best salespeople are able to commit to memory all of the pertinent details of at least the top selling cars. "We do not believe in resting on our laurels. There is always room for improvement and we always seek it. We remain proactive in finding ways to grow and develop in order to serve our customers better," says Bob Conley, GM of Hendrick Honda in Virginia . It’s a lot to learn and the details change regularly. It helps to be a fast learner.
Be Self-motivated. It’s difficult sometimes to pick up the phone and call prospects. A good car salesperson needs to be able to overcome that sluggish feeling and make those calls. Force yourself to make at least 20 phone calls a day. Even if it's just to check up on a previous sale.
Be assertive. A good salesperson needs to be a good closer. To do that you have to be willing to ask for the sale…and that takes being assertive. If you don't ask, they probably won't ask you. It's a fine line to walk but you must always ask for the sale.