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Chicago Car Dealers

Car Pal has an interesting experience to share from yesterday as I worked on matching a client with a vehicle for her family and maximizing her two vehicle trade in values. One dealer, a large dealer in the Chicago metro area required just over ten minutes of phone calls and hold periods just to get through to a live person rather than navigating through a series of voice prompts only to get (several times) a random voice mail messaging service. The live person was a receptionist, and she failed to get a live manager on the phone to chat with me. This is a store that is open 24 hours/day and seven days a week so as to capture all available car buyers! But try to get a sales representative on the phone! 

Needless to say, I took my phone calls and emails elsewhere. This time, my calls were to another smaller Chicago retail facility, and guess what? I was able to get a live person on the phone rather quickly; however, the mantra of the fellow (an internet guy, mind you) was: “When can you come in?” and “We need to see your trades,” and “We can’t evaluate your trades without seeing them.” 

Thus he completely the message embedded in the three short emails I sent, which clearly indicated that I understood that he would ultimately need to see the trades to stand behind any trade value offered, but that I required a ball-park number for the moment so as to avoid wasting his or my time.

All I can say is this: this is the 21st century. Most people expect to be able to do 100% of everything online. They pay bills without going to their bank; they  go to school without entering a brick and mortar facility; they order gifts without entering a store; they preview and flip through pages of books online and receive them in the mail the next day. One of my favorite books written for car dealers is Adapt or Die by Kurt Baumberger. The book, all about customer centricity, urges car dealers to catch up to the 21st century. 

The outstanding news: to date, I have found several dealers that possess the keen ability to work solely through the preferred communication choice (that is, not walking in the door): Vann York Toyota, Honda and GMC in High Point, NC; Alexandria Toyota in Alexandria, VA; and Zeigler Chrysler Dodge Jeep in Grandville, Michigan.   

We are considering beginning Car Pal certifying of dealerships that are easy to do business with. Then, if someone elects not to retain our services, they know where to go for an easier car buying experience.  These will be dealerships that have recognized the reality of the 21st century car buyer who has other tools at their disposal (including Car Pal) to help them avoid the general aggravation, hassle, and complexities often attributed to purchasing an automobile.

As we find the dealerships that possess the wonderful qualities of those listed above, we will post them regularly on our website.  Great businesses do not need to be a secret!

S. Lindsay Graham Car Pal, LLC www.car-pal.com   Please like us 
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