JM&A Group Blog

10 min read

How to Hire Great Talent at Your Dealership

By Ryan Leschel on Oct 9, 2020

Hiring great talent in today's modern business climate has evolved. Long gone are the days of simply putting a classified ad in the paper or reaching out to your HR department and expecting to snag the best of the best. It takes work.

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4 min read

How to Capitalize on Consumers' Online Preferences

By Amanda Pliskow on Sep 9, 2020

Buying a car has largely been an in-person process. Customers want to see their vehicle and take it for a test drive before signing on the dotted line. At the same time, those same customers have also taken to spending a significant part of their path to purchase performing online research.

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4 min read

5 Modern Retail Trends Automotive Dealers Should Know

By Amanda Pliskow on Aug 31, 2020

In recent years, and especially during pandemic lockdown measures, the rise of digital retail has become increasingly apparent. Modern retailers have redefined the boundaries of what can successfully be sold over the internet, as well as the types of quick and efficient customer experiences shoppers have come to expect. Now, with a whole new landscape emerging, your dealership must find its place in the evolving industry.

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5 min read

Building a Bridge Between Sales, Service and F&I Professionals

By Danny Vendrell on Aug 25, 2020

The auto retail industry invests a lot of time and energy into formulating more effective car selling strategies, marketing campaigns and customer retention techniques. And while these efforts are undoubtedly valuable, it’s also important to emphasize the value-adding activities of other departments in your dealership. 

Topics: Service Sales
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4 min read

How Important Are Auto Dealership Websites?

By Amanda Pliskow on Aug 3, 2020

Your organization's website is a major point of contact between your business and your audience - and if it’s not today, it can be. 

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5 min read

4 Benefits of Virtual F&I Sales

By Amanda Pliskow on Aug 3, 2020

Virtual F&I (VFI) meetings are a modern approach to an established part of the vehicle sales process. Products typically sold through in-person meetings are now being handled via video conferencing software. While implementing a new process change at the dealership level can sometimes be met with resistance, Virtual F&I can have numerous advantages, giving the car-buying public a customer experience that matches their expectations, and may even lead to greater long-term loyalty and engagement.

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5 min read

Breaking Down the VFI Process

By Amanda Pliskow on Jul 31, 2020

Whether you’re seeking to complete an all-digital transaction or meet the needs of your in-store buyers, Virtual F&I (VFI) is a seamless, customer-focused way to achieve these goals. There is a clear demand from customers for a personalized, simple buying experience, and VFI is the final piece of that puzzle for dealerships.

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4 min read

Safeguard Your Dealership's Bottom Line with Virtual F&I

By Amanda Pliskow on Jul 29, 2020

Consumer preferences have changed, and our industry is shifting quickly to keep up. It's important that you are seizing every opportunity to do business with your customers in a way that’s efficient and convenient for them. Virtual F&I (VFI) is the latest evolution of our business and is a customer-focused solution that also increases sales and revenue. Successfully implementing Virtual F&I can enhance your profitability and give your customers the experience they prefer.

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10 min read

Virtual F&I FAQ: Everything You Need to Know

By Ryan Leschel on Jul 28, 2020

With dealers continuing to figure out how to meet their customers where they are, many find themselves looking towards digital solutions, like Virtual F&I, to make the F&I process easier and more convenient for the buyer.

As VFI offers a brand new solution to the F&I buying process, we've compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions we’ve gotten from dealers using the program.

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4 min read

How to Be a Great Car Salesperson: 4 Keys to Success

By Ryan Leschel on Jun 19, 2020

Thanks to the ongoing digital revolution, today’s car buyers have a near-limitless amount of information at their fingertips. Historically, auto sales professionals were the primary point of contact for consumers looking to buy or lease a vehicle. But with the rise of third-party comparison websites, and the transparency they now expect from dealership websites, shoppers can research makes and models, sticker prices and local car dealerships without ever having to leave their homes. 

Topics: Sales Training
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6 min read

Car Sales Career Advice: How to Become a Successful Auto Seller

By Ryan Leschel on Jun 12, 2020

Reputations can be hard to change, and no one knows that better than someone in the car business. Despite the drastic shift in our industry and the culture of a dealership, when some people think of a career in auto sales, they still imagine long work hours and stressful negotiations.

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5 min read

How to Get More Customers as a Car Salesperson

By Amanda Pliskow on Jun 5, 2020

Competition in the auto retail world has always been fierce, and as the industry moves toward more digital-centric sales processes, car dealerships have to get creative to score new leads.

Topics: Sales Training
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7 min read

Car Sales Tips: What You Can Do to Improve Your Sales Numbers

By Amanda Pliskow on May 28, 2020

Let’s face it, the auto retail industry is changing and many dealerships are having to get creative to meet their sales quotas and secure long-term profitability.

Topics: Sales Training
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8 min read

8 Important Dealership Regulations - How to Protect Yourself and Your Customers

By Amanda Pliskow on May 22, 2020

Today’s auto dealerships contend with a staggering number of state and federal laws that seek to protect consumers and employees from questionable practices.

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6 min read

How Dealerships Can Sell Across Any Generation

By Ryan Leschel on May 18, 2020

Reaching your audience in a sincere and honest way, no matter the approach, is crucial to gaining the trust and confidence of your prospective customer. 

Communication is one of the most important pieces of the sales puzzle, let’s dive in and explore how you can use communication to improve your sales process.

Topics: Sales Training
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4 min read

Leveraging Your Employee’s Core Skills

By Ryan Leschel on May 18, 2020

For any organization to grow and stay on an upward trajectory, leadership must be able to pinpoint what their employees can bring to the table.

Understanding what your team is capable of as a whole and on an individual level should be one of, if not, the highest priorities you have as a leader.

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5 min read

7 Reasons Why It’s the Right Time for Virtual Training in Your Dealership

By Ryan Leschel on Apr 30, 2020

Virtual education is a proven way to learn something new from anywhere. It’s been around for years, and there’s no doubt you’ve participated in a self-paced training for your dealership or even been part of a full-scale live classroom.

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6 min read

Marketing Your Dealership During COVID-19

By Ryan Leschel on Apr 27, 2020

If we have learned anything in the last month or so, it’s that the game has changed.

Due to the unforeseen challenges COVID-19 has sprung on all of us in the auto industry, we are all adapting and changing the way we conduct business. 

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6 min read

COVID-19 Dealer Communications Plans

By Amanda Pliskow on Apr 15, 2020

Here you’ll find a series of checklists with communications methods you will want to consider implementing within your dealership during COVID-19 and the recovery period to follow. By completing the items on these lists, you can help boost business, ensure customer confidence and keep a consistent message across your channels.

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3 min read

Virtual F&I Delivery Tips

By Amanda Pliskow on Apr 14, 2020

The way we are serving our customers is changing, and digital transactions are part of that new service model. Here are some best practices to keep in mind while you are selling F&I products online.

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5 min read

What’s the “Next Big Thing” in the Auto Industry?

By Amanda Pliskow on Feb 20, 2020

Ah, the elusive question. It’s the eternal elephant in the room - the Next. Big. Thing. Analysts, researchers, industry pros and change leaders all try to pinpoint what it is and tell us how to prepare for it.

You probably came to this blog looking for an answer. And I have one for you, but it’s probably not what you expected to find. It’s better.

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8 min read

E-Commerce Tips for the Automotive Industry

By Amanda Pliskow on Dec 18, 2019

Let’s face it, the auto industry has experienced a major shake up over the past few decades. 

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4 min read

How Digital Retail Can Future Proof Your Auto Dealership

By Danny Vendrell on Dec 13, 2019

Over the past few decades, the auto retail industry has undergone several major transformations that have reshaped how vehicles are marketed, bought and sold. Staying one step ahead of shifting market conditions has been a constant pain point for dealers operating under traditional business models, often leading to compressed margins and a decline in customer retention. So how do you prepare your dealership for the future?

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8 min read

Follow These Best Practices in Your Automobile Dealership

By Amanda Pliskow on Nov 25, 2019

Today’s auto industry is fiercely competitive, and car dealerships of all sizes sometimes struggle to maintain a foothold in their local markets. The rise of digital retail has put a lot of pressure on dealers to modernize their internal operations, streamline their path to purchase and offer more personalized customer experiences - but adapting hasn’t always been easy. 

Topics: Process
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4 min read

The Importance of an Effective and Adaptable Training Program

By Danny Vendrell on Nov 15, 2019

While it pays to hire employees for your auto dealership who bring valuable experience and soft skills, there's no way to find all the necessary competencies through the talent search alone.

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5 min read

Why You Should Recruit and Retain Staff with Diverse Communication Styles

By Danny Vendrell on Oct 18, 2019

The interaction between your salesperson and your customer is where auto sales are made. Hiring employees with developed communication skills is an essential part of improving the performance and overall success of your dealership.

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2 min read

How Strong Leaders Build and Keep Their Dream Team

By Amanda Pliskow on Oct 17, 2019

There are a million books and articles to read about leadership, and it’s hard to know where to start or what will work for you. You can lean in, embody the seven habits, live by your emotional intelligence score or follow another philosophy. But I’m sure you’ll agree auto dealerships are a very specific animal...

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2 min read

Strategies to Get the Results You Want in F&I Underwriting

By Chris Costello on Sep 17, 2019

“It’s not what you make that counts, it’s what you keep.” It’s a common saying, but it certainly applies to dealers offering F&I products.

It all boils down to this: There are a million ways to get results, but getting the results you want takes a lot more thought and consideration.

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2 min read

Building Trust in the Service Drive - 3 Easy Tips

By Amanda Pliskow on Aug 28, 2019

What if I said you were only minutes away from increased sales and improved customer relationships?

Too good to be true? Maybe so, but those few precious minutes with each customer can make that a reality, and it all happens in your service drive.

Topics: Service
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2 min read

10 Easy, Inexpensive Mini-Makeovers for Your Store

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 13, 2019

Across the industry, manufacturers are asking (or requiring) dealerships to upgrade their facilities. And we’ve seen that most dealerships could probably benefit from some spiffing up...

Topics: Service Sales
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2 min read

How To Save Time In The Service Lane And Increase CSI

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 12, 2019

These days, convenience is king. Customers’ time should be at the forefront of a service department’s focus.

At the end of the day, nobody has time to waste. Everyone’s time is valuable. When a customer schedules a time to come into a dealership, it’s important to be respectful of that.

Here are five steps to get your customers in and out of the service lane in 25 minutes or less.

Topics: Service
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3 min read

How to Start Reevaluating Your Operating Expenses

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 12, 2019

Ready to take a look at your operating expenses to combat margin compression?  We talked to NADA’s former Dealership Management Consultant Steve Emery about 11 cost-cutting strategies that you can use to get started.

Topics: Service Sales
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2 min read

5 Rules You Should Be Following To Build Trust (And How To Start)

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 12, 2019

We all want to find that silver bullet.

You know the one… the perfect thought track that leads to trust, credibility, and long-term loyalty. The truth is - there are no silver bullets (sorry), but there are a few tried and true methods that will pay off if they are built into your process with every customer.

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4 min read

Key Traits to Look for When Hiring Auto Dealership Sales Representatives

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 10, 2019

In an effort to combat margin compression and reduce operating costs, many auto dealers around the U.S. have started taking a closer look at their hiring practices. This should come as no surprise, as attracting and retaining top talent has always been a bit of a pain point for the auto retail industry.

Topics: Leadership
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5 min read

How Car Dealerships Are Adapting to Meet Millennial Expectations

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 10, 2019

If you’ve spent any time working in the auto retail industry over the last few years, chances are you’ve noticed a shift in how dealerships operate. The tried-and-tested business models of the past are starting to fall out of practice, giving way to more personalized customer experiences. But what’s causing this transformation within the marketplace?

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3 min read

Succession Planning: How To Prepare For The Future

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 2, 2019

Like many dealerships, the Anderson Automotive Group in Raleigh, N.C., is a family business. 

Fred Anderson started working in his father’s dealership in 1970 and grew that operation into the powerhouse that it is today.

So what’s next?

Topics: Leadership
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4 min read

9 Skills From The Most Effective Salespeople

By Danny Vendrell on Jul 1, 2019

Regardless of the industry you work in, you will always find salespeople who are more successful than the rest. 

These associates seemingly steer clear of the pitfalls that plague their peers and always know what to say.

What’s their secret?

Topics: Sales
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3 min read

How To Generate Sales In Your Service Department

By Danny Vendrell on Jun 26, 2019

If you ask any dealer owner to name the area of the dealership where he or she focuses the most time, effort and resources – you’ll most likely get one answer: the sales department.

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4 min read

Ten Tips to Communicate More Effectively with Customers

By Danny Vendrell on May 23, 2019

We all know this: Effective customer communication is the cornerstone of any successful business. 

And dealer personnel who are able to consistently and effectively communicate with their customers enjoy stronger relationships and increased sales success. 

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