Close the deal!

Selling cars involves two elements!

Selling cars involves two elements. First, you sell the car with all its options, benefits, and unique features. Of course, tailored to the customer’s needs and the ‘problem’ that is solved by purchasing that car. Many cars are already ‘sold’ or at least the chance to sell is created through effective marketing. The customer arrives at a specific used car, perhaps after viewing everything online and comparing it with other options. The choice is made, and an appointment follows. If 50% of the sale is the actual selling, (online) marketing plays a crucial role.

Test Drive

If the test drive and the conversation go well, then the proposal comes to the table. Recently, I experienced in our store that it is important to maintain initiative and not be rushed by the customer. A proposal, including a trade-in proposal, only has value if it’s on paper. Simply saying that a car is worth €8,000 while standing next to it has no value, unless it’s suddenly by far the best offer. But that is often not the case…

A proposal, including a trade-in proposal, only has value if it’s on paper.

So, you have to present your financial proposal and sell it to the customer. You have to ‘close’ the deal. Sure, some deals happen naturally, but with others, you have to close, eventually bringing the deal to a signature. This is a whole different game where as a company, you need to make a difference. Many customers want to be convinced that they are getting a good deal, from a reputable company, with the right assurances. The salesperson must genuinely repeat that compelling story with enthusiasm.


Even the price, especially in this information age we live in, needs to be sold. Every day there may be a better deal, and there is only one that is the cheapest! All others must bring something other than the lowest price to close the deal. I recently heard a great conversation at a Volvo dealer. Customers were in the market for a 2022 Volvo. There was no trade-in, and the price was €40,000, ready to go. The customers wanted to buy the Volvo but for only €38,000, ready to go. A difference of €2,000. What the salesperson did well was acknowledging the potential buyers’ offer. He said: “Thank you for your offer, I understand that this is a significant amount for you.”. The customers said that €38,000 is a lot for a private purchase!

Stay seated

Stay Seated

The salesperson didn’t consult with the manager; he just stayed seated. Then, without giving a value judgment on the offer, he explained why the Volvo was worth €40,000. He mentioned the warranties, assurances, and options. After that, he asked: “Shall we just do it?”. The customer rightfully said “No, we find €38,000 a lot of money.” The salesperson responded with: “I understand, €40,000 is also a lot of money, but for an extra €2,000, you buy the right car with peace of mind from the Volvo dealer of your choice. Whether I give you a €500 discount or not, it remains a significant amount. You are buying the right car that fits your desires! Shall we just make it happen for €40,000?”.

Deal Closed

And the deal was closed! Not difficult, not complicated, but simply in a professional manner! Not standing up, not immediately consulting, just staying seated. Knowing what to say and what not to say and not getting upset that forty grand is a lot of money. Everyone knows that cars cost a lot of money. Those customers knew it too. And yet, they requested a quote, took a test drive, and stayed seated. Closing, with many sentences and closing arguments to close the deal in different ways, is 50% of the work. We should not wait for deals where customers themselves say, “Just do it”! With that approach, we will never achieve the large numbers we need, especially in 2024.

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Shareholder of Carmen Automotive BDC