Let me tell you a car buying negotiation story. The buyer got what she wanted. So did we. But most people don’t like bargaining for cars.
Many years ago, when I was a Sales Manager in what became a very successful car and van Main Dealer I took over a sales department which struggled to sell commercial vehicles.
On one occasion a very aggressive lady market trader was heavily into car buying negotiation with my most senior salesman for the purchase of a new large van. He was struggling to do a deal with this lady, who being a market trader, was used to driving a very hard bargain. He called me to assist him with the transaction. I called the lady into my office and showed her the manufacturers’ invoice. She could see how much we, as a dealer, paid for the vehicle. But surely you might ask we would make no profit. At that time and still today – frequently - in the British retail motor industry, manufacturers apply bonuses paid upon registration to their dealers to increase sales. At that time we, like most successful dealers, and provided we hit our manufacturers’ targets, enjoyed a healthy profit from the bonus paid to us by the manufacturer. We made money just on the bonus!
The whole point of my story is that this scenario of car buying negotiation is still how cars are bought and sold today. But it is fundamentally flawed because most people don’t like dealing this way. The best deal is struck by the customer able to strike the best deal. The best deal for whom?
For most of us a hard negotiating scenario is hardly an efficient or pleasant way to acquire anything let alone a vehicle. Research shows that most of us do not like having to bargain for cars, although we want to obtain a good value car. The lady market trader in my story was something of an exception. Most of us really don’t want car buying stress. There must be a better way than this car buying stress!
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