For years, F&I managers have been successful at payment manipulation and repair scare. We have learned how to extend the term and use fancy closing techniques to close down the payment buyer.
What happens when the customer gives us the hard no? When they shut us down immediately telling us they do not want any of our products?
I will tell you what happens. Most F&I managers freeze up and move forward with the paperwork.
In this industry we have focused most of our efforts on the payment buyer and not the value buyer. Does the value buyer have different needs than the payment buyer? My experience tells me that most of our customers are looking for these few things when they purchase a new vehicle:
- The greatest use and enjoyment;
- The least amount of aggravation;
- The lowest total cost.
By purchasing the service contract, you will never have to worry about paying for an unexpected repair or worry about having a car to drive. Guess what? That’s just icing on the cake. The real magic is hidden and it’s up to you to explain. The reason all customers should purchase the service contract is it provides them an exit strategy. There is absolutely nothing that can add value to the vehicle like the service contract. Here are some reasons why:
- It allows the customer to trade the car on their terms and not the vehicle’s. I’ve watched several customers trade in their vehicle prematurely due to a problematic car. What happens is you end up paying more in depreciation, interest and sales tax.
- It allows the customer to receive more money for their trade. The sales manager would much rather put more money in a trade that has the service contract.
- It allows the customer to keep the car longer, saves depreciation, interest, sales tax.
- The policy is cancelable or transferable.
- The customer has options that they would never experience without the service contract.
When the customer declines, simply relax and ask, “What is the main reason you are choosing to be unprotected?” They will tell you something like this:
- I don’t ever buy those.
- I will assume the risk.
- I don’t believe in them.
It does not matter what they say. The only reason the customer does not purchase the service contract is they do not know how to do the math. It’s up to us to show them.
Do not allow your customers’ previous experience with F&I dictate the outcome of their experience with you. Slow down and explain how the customer is not just paying a premium to cover repairs. They are investing in an exit strategy that will give them options and those options will save thousands.