Salespeople have been selling cars to women for almost as long as cars have been available for purchase. But the days of the “Neanderthal sales guy” and the “good old boys club” at the auto dealership showroom are slowly – and refreshingly – coming to a close. Selling cars to women of today takes a different mindset than, say, that of the last generation. Today’s female car shopper, simply put, is not June Cleaver; instead, she is not afraid to speak her mind and is a major factor – if not THE major factor – in most of today’s automobile purchases. Thus, a salesperson should never assume that a woman needs approval from anyone else to purchase a vehicle.
In addition, a salesperson can’t forget that women process things differently when compared to their male counterparts. They typically make slower, more deliberate automobile buying decisions – because they often do even more research than men. It’s the sales consultant who can intuitively tell when to be attentive to the female buyer – and when to back off a little – who stands the best chance of making a sale. Much of that is based on being a good listener, because as mentioned earlier, today’s woman often knows what she wants and doesn’t want … and isn’t afraid to let you know what’s on her mind. React accordingly.
Of course, the salesperson should show the prospective female buyer just as much respect as a male – but again, you can’t always take that for granted. The “Neanderthal” sales guy calls his female customers “honey” or some other similar condescending name, tells her she “looks would look good in that car” … and generally talks down to her. He also assumes she knows little to nothing about cars, which is dangerous to do these days – not to mention insulting.
Another thing that works well is to have female sales consultants employed at the dealership. Often, this makes women shoppers more comfortable, and they can have an increased level of trust in a salesperson of their own gender. It’s also a good way to begin to break up the aforementioned “good old boys” club – yet another great benefit of selling cars to women.
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