Become the Buyer, Instead of the Seller

Become the buyer, instead of the seller. This is a very simple concept; however, it flies over most salespeople’s heads. Think about it, if you are in the process of selling a customer a vehicle you are the seller or a salesperson. Most customers are weary of salespeople, especially car salespeople. Customers tend to be guarded around salespeople. Buyers are hesitant about the salespersons motives and tend to want to keep their information to themselves. Conversely, salesperson have information they are more than willing to share.

So why don’t we switch roles with our customers? Why don’t we let them become the seller and they can provide us with all the information we need? How exactly do you turn your buyer into a salesperson? Easy, you get them talking about their current vehicle. As soon as you start talking about their current vehicle, they become the seller.

Most salespeople spend all their time worrying about how they are going to sell a customer they don’t address the customer’s current vehicle. This is a big mistake.

A customer is not going to make a buying decision about a new vehicle, if they have not determined a solution about their current vehicle.

5 Reasons You Should Focus on Being the Buyer and Not the Seller

  1. Align Your Interests – At the beginning of a relationship with a new potential customer they view salespeople as advisories. You must get them to see you as a ally. The faster you can do this, the faster you will build rapport and a relationship with your customer. The fastest way to do this, is to focus on the customers current vehicle early.
  2. Quality Used Car Acquisition – Have you every said, “we are buried in all our used cars,” or “I can’t make any money selling these used cars?” If you are like most salespeople you have or something like it. This is an area that is difficult for most salespeople to control, unless the salesperson becomes the buyer instead of the seller.
  3. Earn a Commission or Spiff for Buying the Vehicle – Most dealerships will spiff or bonus salespeople who buy cars ‘off the street.’ If your dealership doesn’t talk to your Sales Managers, Used Car Manager, or even the General Manager. I am sure that you explain to them that you intend to work customers to buy their vehicles they would be more than happy to put a compensation program in place for you. Buying cars these days is not easy and your dealership probably needs all the help they can get.
  4. Sell Your Acquisitions – If you invest your time into buying cars ‘off the street,’ a spiff for the purchase will most likely not be your only commission. You are the most likely person to sell the cars you acquire because you know the history behind them, you know they are available before everyone else, and you will be passionate about the vehicle in your selling and your passion will show to your customer.
  5. Sell the Next One – This article has spent a lot of space talking about buying a customer’s current vehicle, however you main job is to sell cars, not buy them. Once your customer has decided to sell their current vehicle, they are more often than not, going to buy their next vehicle from you. The key here is that you must first make the customer comfortable about selling their current vehicle. This will establish your relationship with the customer. This will build the bond and trust that the customer has for you. Once this happens they will look to you, their now trusted advisor to help them with the purchase of their next vehicle. So, don’t panic, you will still get to sell cars. As a matter of fact, you will actually get to sell more.  

Turning yourself into the buyer can be done with almost customer types. The following are easy customers to do this with:

  • End of Lease Customers
  • Orphan Owners
  • Service Customers
  • Previous Sold Customers

Once you have mastered becoming the buyer with the above customer types, you can really step up your game and do it with these:

  • Phone-ups
  • Internet Leads
  • Fresh-up

Once again, I am not saying that you no longer focus on selling cars. I am saying that there is a time to be the buyer and a time to be the seller. If you focus on being the buyer early in the transition you are actually going to sell more cars and spend less time sell. Becoming the buyer instead of the seller is one of the steps to working in the customers best interest and to being of service to them. This is a great way to get a relationship with a customer started and the build upon that foundation.



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