It’s clear there’s no shortage of challenges facing auto dealers. As a leader, you can prepare for what’s to come, but that’s just one piece of the growth puzzle.

Read on to learn strategies your team can start using today to respond to today’s automotive buyers.

Enhance Your Site-to-Store Pipeline

Building a sustainable digital presence has become a top priority for today’s car dealers, especially considering that consumers spend 61% of their time shopping online, which equates to about 14 hours per buyer. But how do you turn online visitors into in-store shoppers?

The short answer: Digital marketing.

Dealership websites and social media profiles can add a lot of value to a car buyer’s journey, as nearly half of all buyers visit dealership websites, second only to third-party sites. Cox Automotive recommends a broad, integrated marketing strategy, including a strong presence in the online inventory marketplace to effectively reach and influence shoppers wherever they are online. Your digital marketing efforts should also differentiate your dealership from the competition.

Considering how competitive the auto retail industry has become, it’s crucial to offer consumers as much upfront information as possible. To make your dealership website successful, you need to treat it as an integral part of your overall sales process, not an afterthought.

An intuitively designed and user-friendly website can help drive dealership visits, increase brand visibility and engage potential customers before they ever set foot in your showroom. When designing or updating your website, it’s important to make sure all information on pricing, incentives and services are accurate, transparent and consistent with your brick-and-mortar dealership. This can help create a valuable connection between your online and in-store sales processes, which may help encourage shoppers to swing by in person.

Become the Walking, Talking Knowledge Base

Car buyers are more informed about their vehicle options than ever before, which means your sales team needs to be educated about your dealership offerings and prepared to answer a wide variety of product- and service-related questions on the fly.

While it may be unreasonable to expect your sales team to memorize every detail about your inventory, encouraging them to stay up to date with trends in the automotive industry is a no-brainer.

That’s right, one of the best car sales techniques is to simply understand the products you’re selling and anticipate consumers’ questions, concerns and objections. This can not only help your dealership build credibility with potential customers, it can also provide your sales team with more opportunities to upsell specific vehicle features, F&I products and more.

More importantly,employee training and development can help eliminate many of the siloed business practices that have been holding dealerships back. For example, rather than annexing finance managers to the final stages of the car-buying process, encourage your sales team to be upfront about how those teams work together to give your customers the best experience possible. The same is true for fixed operations and other customer-facing arms of your business.

more team-oriented business model is a transparent approach to car sales and can help boost your overall earnings and extend the number of touchpoints and revenue opportunities in your customer lifecycle.

From his success on the sales floor of an automotive dealership  to becoming a veteran trainer and then the adoption of technology for Internet-based marketing, his career has evolved to deliver the skills and tools needed to help consumers. Richie Bello combined his automotive expertise with his robust desire to “take care of the customer first” to become an automotive influencer, published author, and renowned trainer.  Bello absorbed the wants and needs of consumers as he worked up the ladder of the automotive industry.

Over the thirty-five years of his career, he developed strong Internet marketing skills, leading him to developing software solutions that create ease for consumers, and helps dealers improve relationships with customers. Innovation drives success. And, for Bello, it’s in his DNA. took years to come to consumers and arrived in a timely manner, during the 2020 Pandemic. With over 6 million vehicles on the site, features that help consumers deliver, finance and warranty, Bello has met the retail digital age head on.

Bello also is founder of Richie Bello Institute of Leadership and Management, a 501C3 not for profit, dedicated to the recruitment, education and employment of veterans into the automotive industry. Visit


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