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Enhancing customer service in F&I

April 5, 2011
Filed under Service Providers

As gas prices continue to rise, we all prepare for what we hope will be a better sales year. Your dealership is looking great, and you feel confident that your customer service is going to generate new sales and repeat business for years to come. You’ve created a full service experience guaranteed to “wow” each and every door swing. Are you selling this experience, or are you selling on price?

Sure, your customers are looking for a good deal, but don’t forget that they are also looking for value. When you talk to customers, do you steer them to the cheapest bike, or do you listen to their desires to find the best value for their individual needs? Hopefully, your sales staff has mastered the skill of active listening, and their sales techniques will both move units and bring repeat business. This practice shouldn’t end on the sales floor; it should also extend to the F&I office.

In recent visits with dealerships, I’ve heard repeatedly the importance getting customers the cheapest insurance. Not necessarily that the customer asked for the cheapest, but that the F&I manager assumes this because the customer has passed on other back end products. Many F&I professionals offer insurance products from many companies, primarily to find the lowest price for their customers. It’s good to see dealerships looking out for their customers, but are they getting customers the best deal or simply the “cheapest” policy? Your customers walk out your door knowing what bike they bought. Do they understand if they are adequately insured? After all, you are selling them a bike that they want not need and therefore they will want to protect that investment. Offering insurance at the point of sale helps create a full service experience, but selling insurance solely on price may be a disservice to your customer; and it could cost you and your customer in the long run.

Just as you take the time to ensure you find the customer the right bike, also ensure you provide the right insurance. If your customer bought $1,000 in safety apparel and $5,000 in accessories, offer them the protection to go with it. If they plan long journeys on their bikes, offer them the Excursion Diversion coverage to travel with them. You’ll see that when you cater the insurance to your customer, the value is far more important than the “cheapest price” could ever be. Then, when the customer needs to utilize the insurance they bought, they’ll be happy you truly helped them get what they needed.

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