David Long and the All Things Used Cars community talked Buy Centers Friday. The hour zipped by as operators who have found repeatable success in their used car buying strategy shared their experiences, wins, and some losses. Of course, we grabbed notes from the chat. We considered keeping them to ourselves if we open our own buy center someday and be instantly ahead of our competition. (or enjoy the replay here)
Structure, process, and marketing will all be unique to your business and market. Each should be considered, and a plan should be implemented early.
Separate space. A buy center should have its own space and operate as its own business. It is not an extension of your sales department. Ensure things like starting salary, DMS use, and success metrics are unique to this part of your business and understood by the associates.
Accounting needs to be on board. Same-day checks, same-hour checks, direct ACH payments. A customer can get their money instantly at the competitors. Don't lose out on an acquisition because some accounting problems are a hassle on the front end.
Pick a technology and own it. Self-explanatory, but don't make dealing with your technology, website, or acquisition platform a bottleneck for your strategy.
Be aggressive. Treat every car in the buy center, dealership, and service drive that matches your strategy like a must-have. Go to the customer's house if you need to. Tell the world you are not just an option but the best option for selling a car, even if they have no interest in buying.
Make it fun. The customer experience includes more than a transaction. Invite them to enjoy their time with you, take selfies, and post on social media with smiling faces and happy customers. A successful buy is a free content environment showing more people that selling to you is a good choice.