New rules for used-car window stickers require them to state if there is a factory warranty remaining on the vehicle. This is helpful information for buyers.
BUT, if there is no warranty remaining, then used car dealers write "as-is" on the sticker. As Consumer Reports notes, an "as-is" statement may not be the proper way to say this. One example sticker said after as-is, "The dealer won't pay for any repairs. The dealer is not responsible for any repairs, regardless of what anybody tells you."
Since there are fraud laws in all 50 states, it is just not true that the dealer is not responsible for any repairs. It seems to me that they should find a better way to say it. Maybe just "no current warranty." There should also be regulations that dealers cannot add language to the sticker - it either states the warranty time or that there is no warranty. Otherwise, buyers are stuck with conflicting information.
What do you think about the new laws? Helpful or in need of some changes?
Especially in a down economy, many people do not have the good credit required to get a car loan. Clint Williams gives five tips for those needing auto loans. The first couple highlight the importance of doing research on loans prior to visiting a dealership. Mr. Williams also recommends going with a shorter loan period as that means paying less in the long run.
The problem, of course, is that those with poor credit often cannot afford the higher payment each month that comes with a shorter loan period. Auto Credit Express points out that many can use their income tax refund as the down payment they otherwise may not be able to put aside, which helps their credibility.
Tax season can be a good time to buy a car, but considering Mr. Williams' advice is probably a good idea, too.
We are planning to head to NADA soon, so an article titled NADA Convention & Expo to Feature Used-Car Side of Business, Too in Auto Remarketing caught our attention.
Most of our business is with used car dealers, and we hope to see some of you at the NADA Convention. The fact that NADA is gearing sessions toward used car sales backs up our recent post about the need for independent dealers to find ways to compete with franchises that are putting more energy into their used car departments.
Of course, we wish all car dealers success, and our business is here to help dealerships of all types sell more. But, for the independent and BHPH dealers out there maybe a little extra advice can't hurt. Take note of Brent Carmichael's 5 Biggest Mistakes in BHPH. They are lack of:
Make sure your business is doing all it can to compete in the current economy and be successful!
With the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in place car dealerships are among the businesses that will be more closely scrutinized. Customer complaints can result in a review by the CFPB, which could result in hefty fines.
Ken Shilson of NABD has made some recommendations to BHPH dealers including to make sure they are complying with all of the regulations, not putting out any false advertising, and establishing consumer complaint procedures in writing. This advice is helpful for all dealers.
Mr. Shilson also recommends following up with customers to proactively see if they are happy or have any complaints. Then, deal with any complaints seriously. At AutoRaptor CRM, we always recommend following up with customers who have purchased from you, and our CRM can help you do that.
With good management oversight, a CRM can help your dealership stay on top of customer issues and complaints before they spiral out of control, leading to investigations and fines.
Long known as mainly an industry for men, women are making more and more advances in the auto industry. Auto Dealer Monthly just announced their 2012 Sales Professional of the Year, and it was awarded to Tiffany Kruzer of Ganley Honda in North Olmsted, Ohio. She was one of only two female Sales Professionals of the Month in 2012 in Auto Dealer Monthly.
In addition, the Urban Wheels awards', "the official multicultural event of the North American International Auto Show," honorees this year were all women, recognized for their innovation and leadership in the auto industry.
Women still only make up about 21% of motor vehicle manufacturing workers with about 58% of them in office or clerical positions, while, as of 2010, only 13% of salespeople at dealerships were female, and less than 3% of dealership owners were women. There have been surveys done that show women are often the ones making auto buying decisions for U.S. families. Maybe they would like to see more female faces at dealerships.
Tiffany Kruzer, the Sales Professional of the Year, says her goal is to own a dealership someday. We wish her luck in that goal!
I recently read about a survey that found, "organizations that provided their sales teams with mobile access to their CRM systems realized a 14.6 percent increase in productivity."
Everyone is going mobile. In car dealerships mobility is key. Salespeople are out on the lots, talking to customers; they are not at their desks most of the day, so being able to respond to emails and check their CRM on their phone or tablet is convenient, if not necessary.
The increase in productivity could also be attributed to the addictive nature of cell phones and mobile devices. Many people check their phones all the time, but are rarely using a computer. Therefore, access via a mobile device gets the salesperson's attention immediately, whereas they may not be on their computer for hours.
AutoRaptor CRM has had a mobile version for years. As a web-based application, AutoRaptor is easy to access from anywhere that internet service is available. There are no hassles about syncing your mobile device with your desktop because you are always logged into your online account.
Is your CRM mobile? Are your salespeople using it?
California recently passed various new laws affecting motorists and car dealers. The laws include being able to drive in high-occupancy vehicle lanes with only one driver if your car meets ultra-low emissions standards, allowing hands-free texting while driving (with voice controls), and allowing proof of insurance to be shown electronically on a mobile device.
One law requires used car dealers to provide specific information labeling vehicles for sale, including reasonable market value and the source of the information. "AB 1447 will require these dealers to provide a vehicle warranty, limit them from tracking customer vehicles with GPS devices and prevent them from being able to electronically disable a vehicle without signed consent from the buyer at the time of purchase." This law could really affect used dealers and especially Buy Here Pay Here businesses.
The new law getting the most attention, though, is the Autonomous Vehicles law that allows self-driving cars to be test-driven on public roads with a licensed driver in the driver's seat who can take over manual control in an emergency. I am someone who was hesitant to use cruise control (I think I'd been driving about 18-20 years before I tried it), so I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable with a driverless vehicle.
What are your thoughts? Do you want to try a driverless vehicle? Do you agree with the new used car law? Let us know!
There was good news at the end of 2012 in the new and used car sales reports as both had great sales in 2012. Auto Remarketing says it is still hard to predict what 2013 will bring, but hopes that the improving economy will help used sales.
An increase in new car sales helps the used car market as more late model vehicles are available for resale. As Sarah Rubenoff in Auto Remarketing puts it, "increases in available trade-ins and high demand are expected to boost used sales, while numerous redesigns may ramp up the new market."