Our blog: How well do your sales staff know today’s tech?

  21 May 2018

This won’t go down well among many but I have to ask the question, are all sales staff really up to speed with the technology in today’s cars and what customers are looking for in them?

It is something I have often mused about, how frequently the people at the sharp end of the sales process are trained and retrained on the products they sell. As cars become ever more electrically complex and digitally connected, I think it is a fair point to make.

Only a few months ago I was in a Kia dealership, lovely people and a good business, when it was let slip that one the salesmen hadn’t a clue how to link a mobile to a car.

And on the condition of talking strictly off the record I had a fascinating conversation this week with someone pretty high up in a dealership franchised with a premium German brand.

Why, he mused, do we need all this expensive real estate to display cars when it isn’t the way people buy them. Sitting in an office above the showroom and looking at what I guess would have been getting on for around £400,000 of metal below, he had a point.

Warming to his theme he went on along the following lines. “These places are for yesterday’s way of selling. I am sure we will see them being replaced by much smaller centres staffed with younger product geniuses or slicker online connection with better real-time linkage. It would be cheaper, in tune with today’s buyers, more efficient and the depth and breadth of knowledge the geniuses have of the product is remarkable. Remarkable and to a potential customer, convincing.”

He has a point.

As a motoring journalist I test a few new cars each month and write with a degree of expertise about the ride and handling, the engine performance and so on but increasingly I think I should focus more on MirrorLink and MirrorScreen, cloud technology and all the other tech which is so easily baffling to over-25s (like me) but which buyers tend to value more than the dampers’ bump and rebound characteristics.

Perhaps I will see a few sales execs at the next tech training session…


John Swift


Auto Retail Agenda

imageTags: Blog, tech

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