When replacing your customers car’s tires, price shouldn’t be the first consideration… Other factors, such as safety, grip and ride quality, should top the reasons-to-buy list.
And when the time arrives to finally replace those worn tires, the majority of consumers are not very good at doing their research to find the best fit.
In reality, no single component in a car is more critical to its stability, handling and ride quality than its tires. The right tire can even improve fuel economy and save your life.
With that said, this month I urge you to go the extra mile when recommending tires to your customers… ask questions such as: What improvements would you like to see made on your car? Maybe the customer tells you that their car is noisy especially at higher speeds, so they’d like their car to be quieter. Or they tell you they have a vibration issue. Maybe these are the very reasons your customers are visiting your lane in the first place. So take note of things such as the tread depth, check for irregular wear… is the outside half the tire 7/32 of tread, but the inside is 3/32? What brand and model are the tires? Talk to your customers and find out how many miles they drive each year. Are they leasing their current vehicle or did they purchase it and how long do they plan to drive it? By asking questions you might find out your customer drives quite a bit, likes a quiet and comfortable tire more than anything else, in the past has always preferred Michelin tires, and of course they want great traction. From there use the Tire Sales Tool or GMTireBilling or call the office staff at RHD TIRE to determine the best recommendation, and then see if you can price match that tire. Your customers want and expect the BEST tire for the LOWEST price and YOU have the ability to make that happen every time… even for the price conscience consumer who is strictly after the lowest price!
Take a look at this example made specifically for the price conscience consumer.
Before even getting into the features and benefits of the 3 tires listed above, take a look at the basics. Both the Firestone and the Uniroyal come with higher mileage warranties than the Kelly tire, and they both start with more tread depth, but had you just organized these tires by lowest to highest price in Tire Sales Tool or GMTireBilling the Kelly Edge would be the least expensive and would most likely be your go to option. When you make the extra effort and search for an opportunity to price match you can save your customer money and put them into a better quality tire.
So this month I once again ask that you track your sales and submit your tracking sheets to me at the end of the month… However this month I will reward the top 5 Service Advisors, and Kelly tires will be worth only 1 point, while ALL other program brands will be worth 2 points. Please see attachment for details and let me know if you have any questions. As always thank you for all that you do! Let me know if you have any questions.
I have another interview below with one of the TOP Service Advisors in the state… this time it is BRITTNEY FUCHS of Bill Brown Ford! I hope you can incorporate some of these tips and processes today! Thanks Brittney! -Enjoy Everyone!
Name: Brittney Fuchs
Dealership: Bill Brown Ford Quick Lane
Years at Bill Brown Ford Quick Lane: 1 year
Years as a Quick Lane Advisor: 2 years
What is your favorite tire brand and why?
Personally, I have to say my favorite brand is Pirelli because I hear a lot of positive feedback on that brand, Pirelli’s pricing is consistently awesome, and price matching is typically the best on the Pirelli tires!
If you had to choose what tire brands would you say you sell the most of and why?
Goodyear definitely seems to be our top selling tire brand. I believe it is due to their brand recognition. They also have great rebates and typically a great low price on their tires.
Do you inform your customers of the Low Price Tire Guarantee?
YES- EVERY SINGLE ONE!
Would you say you price match the majority of the tires you sell?
OH YES – about 95% of my tire sales are sold with the low price tire guarantee!
Which competitors do you price match most often?
Simple Tire is the often the best competitor to price match… they have the lowest price more often than not and we can save our customer’s so much money. The customers absolutely love this! If Simple Tire does not have the tire we are searching for then we use Walmart, Discount Tire, and Belle Tire.
When you do price match a tire what is the process?
We (the advisors) print out the competitors price for the customer, we then apply the discount/ price adjustment and close the invoice, and then we send a copy of both to the Parts Department. Parts then uploads the claim to Tire Sales Tool.
When you are informed that a customer needs tires do you research tires and or price match before speaking to the customer?
Yes, I do this beforehand if the customer is NOT waiting so I am prepared when I call them. If the customer is waiting I find there is no better sales technique than to call them up to your computer and price match right in front of them. Then they have no reason to doubt you! The sale is then made immediately.
If you had to estimate, how long does it take to complete a tire sale? Starting from the time you are informed the customer needs to tires to the customer agreeing to purchase the tires.
It varies, but I would say generally it takes about 15-20 minutes for customers who call in over the phone. Most of the time over the phone conversations are spent asking questions and looking up information, so this is somewhat time consuming but it is effective!
In person I would say it takes 5-10 min. I show them the deal and out the door price and if they agree I create their invoice and print out the price from the competitors website and begin that process.
Who handles DOT registration at your dealership?
The advisors do it. The techs write the new tire’s DOTs on the hard copy and we register the tires immediately on Tires Sales Tool. This process takes 2 minutes. Again, not a long time and we get it done right away.
Do you offer Tire Care to your customers?
I feel the situation out when it comes to Tire Care. There are some customers who you can just tell are not going to be receptive to Tire Care, as they view it as an unnecessary add-on. Then there are customers who ask for it before I can even get the words out of my mouth!
Bill Brown Ford has one of the busiest Quick Lanes that I have ever been to… what do you contribute your success to?
We get a lot of referrals and recommendations, and we are told over and over again that we are fast. We also never sell anyone something they do not need, we advise people of future purchases so they can plan ahead, and we are very aware of the how important trust is to our customer. It’s basically all about trust!
How many repair orders does your Quick Lane write on average per day? How many do you write personally?
I write about 25-30 a day. Our Quick Lane averages around 80-120 a day.
LINK TO PDF FILE: MAY CONTEST 2017 A
Click here to print the March incentive and sales tracking sheet:
This month I want to put the spot light on one of the nicest, most knowledgable service advisors I have met in the past 4 years, Scott Daniels of Hines Park Lincoln’s Quick Lane.
Scott always has a pleasant personality, he always puts his customer’s first, and really acts as a consultant for his customers by taking the time to ask questions and figure out a product or service that truly does meet their needs and wants.
He was also the winner of my November Tire Selling Contest! He consistently does a great job at recommending and selling tires month after month. He is a true professional, and a car (and tire) enthusiast!
If you missed my blog post from August (2016) you can click here and you will find a small write-up of Scott’s tire selling processes and his love for his favorite tire brand, Continental! Or just keep on reading because I asked Scott to explain why he loves Continental Tire so much and here is what he had to say.
Hands down my favorite tire brand is Continental, they have specialized tires for winter, summer and few different types of all season tires to benefit your needs.
My favorite all season tire is the Continental DWS 06, the DWS stands for Dry, Wet and Snow. They even have the ‘DWS’ letters on the tire in the tread, the letters will eventually fade to say when the tire is no longer good for that weather condition. S for snow, will be the first to fade, the W for wet, then eventually D for dry. I have owned multiple sets of these tires over the years (including the older dws) and they work well. I even run these tires on my 2014 Ford Focus ST during spring, summer, and fall. These tires may only be rated for 50,000 miles but I will take performance/traction on the road over a higher mileage, harder tire that could make your car slide all over the road. I also like the aggressive look that you only typically see on stickier summer only tires and the DWS06 is exceptionally quiet, which is quite uncommon for a sporty looking tire.
A similar tire to the DWS06 would be Michelin primacy MXM4, they come stock on the 2013-2016 Lincoln MKZ. I drove on the Michelin’s for 18 months and was not that impressed. My fiance (who’s not a car/tire enthusiast) even noticed the difference. They just didn’t handle the road and corner as well, they also did not seem to last long either. After 12,000 miles the Michelin tires were worn down to 5/32 of tread. I know a Lincoln MKZ is a much different vehicle compared to the Focus ST but even with similar miles (and I also drive the Focus more aggressively) the Continentals have lasted much longer. Another big factor is pricing, by the time you price match, use the Ford discount (which Michelin has not been a part of for 15 months) and mail in rebates, Continental tires are way cheaper.
I should mention Continental also has a value line called General Tire, but I wouldn’t label them as a cheaper tire. If you are looking for all-terrain tires General Tires are a great option, especially the Grabber. I also love General’s winter tires and am driving on them now.
I’m running the General Altimax Arctic’s snow tires on the Focus ST. We have had a couple of days of winter snow so far and I’ve had no issues. I do get a smile every time I see snow on the ground so I can test the limits of the tires, I also enjoy seeing my small, low to the ground car, passing AWD and 4WD SUV’s and trucks on the roads.
During the spring I plan to autocross and I will be buying the NEW Continental ExtremeContact Sport tires! A lot of people rave about the good traction they receive from the Continental DW (which is what the ExtremeContact Sport is replacing) on the track, empty parking lot tracks, and also on the road. I had little experience with Continental DW tires up until last year when Continental sent me out to their test track in Uvalde, Texas. Their exceptional traction probably explains why I kept a Dodge Challenger SRT with DW tires on their test track but I took a BMW 3 series off the track because they were running a competitive tire! We all know the Dodge Challenger is heavy and not a track car, where BMW’s possibly one of the best handling cars in the world. The NEW Continental ExtremeContact sport comes out in February 2017 and it’s supposed to achieve even better traction, have less road noise, and handle better in dry conditions compared to the Continental DW. It’s also supposed to be a better option to the Michelin pilot Super Sport but at a less expensive price and comes with a 30,000 limited mileage warranty! I can’t wait to get these tires!
A little more on the subject of testing out Continental and General tires to their competitor’s tires at the Uvalde test tracks… we tested the General Grabbers on ATV’s and Wow! That was a great experience and the tires gripped the dirt even at large incline/declines and over small boulders! The company that supplied the ATV’s said in the 2 months using the ATV’s with General Grabbers they didn’t have a single tire blow out or leak from bending a wheel, or twigs puncturing the tire. The same could NOT be said for tires that came stock on them. Continental used to take Jeep Wranglers out but the vehicles couldn’t handle the abuse, let alone the tires. So even with more abuse the General Grabbers still held up. This makes me want to get an off-road vehicle and see what I can do!
As for a couple features I love about Continental tires… one would be their ability to track if your tires are wearing unevenly. There are 3 rectangular indentations on the edge of the inner and outer tread, if the rectangles start to wear differently you should get your vehicle to a shop and get an alignment before tire prematurely wears. This saves your customers from having to purchase a new set of tires due to their tires wear unevenly and prematurely, and it saves them money!
Another feature Continental tires have over their competitors is their 1 year/ (first) 2/32” of tread depth complimentary road hazard coverage! When my customers come in for a tire leaking air, let’s say 3 months after buying a set of Continental ContiPro Contacts, and find out there’s a nail on the edge of the sidewall causing the air leak there’s no need to worry. Instead of trying to sell a customer another tire for $200 they receive a replacement for free!! The customer is happy and is more willing to trust me and will definitely come back to spend more money at your shop in the future. The parts manager is also happy too because Continental Tire pays their warranty claims within a couple of weeks. An extra benefit too is Jill at RHD Tire is always willing to give you a hand with warranty work. Send her an email about needing to do a tire warranty and she is there within a couple of days taking care of it, which takes the stress off you and frees up more time to spend selling more Continental Tires.
Lastly, another reason I love Continental Tire is their incentives for selling Continental tires. Every time you sell a Continental Tire, could be 1 tire or a set of 4 tires, you can accumulate points to spend at Continental’s website, www.continentalrpm.com. Over the past few years I have bought a pressure washer, a panini maker ,and even bought my Fiance a Keurig coffee maker… as well as many t-shirts, hats, and other swag.
I hope Scott’s love for Continental tire inspires more Service Advisors to learn a little bit about a particular tire line… it doesn’t have to be Continental tire it could be any of the 13 major tire brands on the Ford ATW Tire program. Scott’s enthusiasm, knowledge, and love for the Continental Tire brand makes selling tires so easy.. he has talking points and real life experience to share with his customers, and his knowledge builds trust which creates value for Scott’s customers and himself. That is how every tire sale should be made! Service Advisors if you are interested in learning more about a particular tire brand please reach out. There are many online resources to help, there are tire courses and tests you can take, and there are some really awesome rewards for taking the time to complete those courses… just like Scott pointed out with the Continental RPM website.
Here is a fun little fact:
“It may come as a surprise that a staggering 318 million LEGO tires are produced each year, that’s over 870,000 each day! The LEGO factories produces tires 24 hours per day, 365 days per year because nearly half of all LEGO sets include a wheel of some sort.”
And here I thought the Ford Tire Program had a hefty annual goal!
Speaking of the Ford Tire Program Goal… Are you aware of what the goal is this year?
It’s 3.95 Million tires purchased! That’s 1 Tire Purchased Every 4 Seconds!!!!
That’s pretty incredible if you ask me.
I hope all of you in the GREAT state of Michigan take pride in knowing you help TREMENDOUSLY in achieving the tire goal year after year, because you are tire selling rock stars!
Thank you for being so diligent at your jobs and advising your customer’s on their service needs. It never goes unappreciated!
Here is the November Tire Selling Incentive brought you by RHD TIRE… let me know if you have any questions!
RACHEL DID IT AGAIN! Congratulations! Everyone check out Rachel’s tire selling and service related advice and tips below.
For those of you who missed it, Rachel also won our July incentive… click here for more tire selling advice from the lovely Rachel.
Rachel Laskowski of Hines Park Lincoln Quick Lane (SEPTEMBER INCENTIVE WINNER)
How do you find out the customer’s vehicle year make model and options?
We first ask for the customer’s name and look them up. If they are in our computer system then we have all of that information on the screen. We also go out to the vehicle and get the VIN and mileage, so either way we will have that information right away.
How do you find out your customer’s tire size?
If it is a Ford or Lincoln vehicle it is on the back of the OASIS. If it is another make then the technicians write it down on the multi-point inspection report.
Do you set a monthly goal for selling tires?
I have been setting a tire goal for myself since this July (2016) and I have been increasing the goal by 10 tires each month, so right now my monthly goal is 80.
Do you track your tire sales? Yes
What other service products do you track? Oil Changes? Batteries sold? Flushes? Etc.
I track tires, batteries, flushes, air filters, and brakes.
Do you finding tracking your sales to be helpful?
Yes! I can see where I am at with my sales each month and where I need to improve. It also helps me stay more motivated throughout the month.
Do you know what sets your store apart from your competition when it comes to selling tires?
That’s easy… the Low Price Tire Guarantee makes us the lowest price around for tires! I am currently price matching and beating Discount Tire, Walmart, and Sears most often. Our customers absolutely love this offering! Not to mention, our store it makes it very easy to do a Low Price Tire Guarantee claim.
When you sell tires that you do not stock how do you go about ordering them?
If we do not stock the tire the customer wants then we call RHD TIRE and order the tires ourselves. Then we write down those special orders in the tire order log to keep track of the purchases.
What happens if the customer cancels the tire sale?
Then we return the tires to the tire distributor we ordered them from so we receive full credit via ATW. This is when the tire order log really comes in handy because it helps us track special orders so they do not end up sitting in inventory for great lengths of time because someone simply forgot what they were for.
How do you handle tire warranty situations?
I will make an initial call to the tire manufacturer to run the situation by the technical support rep to make sure the condition is covered under warranty and find out if it will be prorated based on the tread life received. I relay this information back to the customer and if they approve then we move forward with replacing the tires. Then Jill from RHD TIRE comes in and takes care of the rest of the claim. She is awesome and always helps us out with warranty claims which we greatly appreciate!
Hey, Hi, and Hello!
I have a WINNER to announce for the month of August!!!!!!!!!… (click here for details on the August incentive.)
I am proud and happy to say the Service Advisor that sold the most tires during the month of August is Felicia Collins of Avis Ford! Congratulations Felicia!!
Felicia is such a knowledgable, positive person and has a great outlook and attitude, and if I had to guess I would say those attributes are what really helps her build a great customer base and earn her customer’s trust and business.
I met with Felicia not too long ago and she was kind enough to answer my tire questions and allow me to share her answers with all of you! So please take a look below, and again congratulations Felicia! Great job!
Felicia Collins of AVIS FORD
(AUGUST INCENTIVE WINNER)
“Paying attention to the details like the tire size during a walk around inspection can save you a lot of time if you notice the tires are worn or damaged because you can start pricing out tires for the customer right away.”
How long have you been a Service Advisor? 2 years
How long have you been employed by AVIS FORD? 5 years
On average how many tires do you sell per month? I sell around 60 tires per month.
Walk me through a tire sale from the moment you discover a customer needs tires.
Our technicians will bring me the customer’s multi-point inspection form and inform me of any issues with the customer’s tires. I make note of the current tire make and model on the vehicle and then I will search for that specific tire on Tire Sales Tool. If it is available I will write up a full quote that includes Price Matching, any rebates available, and if available I will include the Employee Discount. I will then present that quote to the customer. If they are not happy with the tire I quoted out then I will go and price out Good, Better, and Best options for them to compare. The majority of the time they like the tires that were on their vehicle and they go with my first quote.
Do you price match every tire you sell?
Yes! I cannot think of time in the past 2 years where I have not price matched a tire.
Do you register DOT codes?
I do not register DOT codes. Our parts department register’s our DOT codes.
Do you submit price matching claims?
No, I only print the competitor’s price off the of their website. Then I give that paperwork to the parts department and from there the parts department uploads the claims.
Any advice for a new Service Advisor or any advice for a Service Advisor who is not succeeding at selling tires?
I would say staying organized is key. Plus, paying attention to the details like the tire size during a walk around inspection can save you a lot of time if you notice the tires are worn or damaged because you can start pricing out tires for the customer right away. Lastly, being honest and pleasant with the customer and treating your customers with respect makes a huge difference and helps to build a long lasting relationship with them.
What is your favorite tire brand?
I personally love Goodyear! I have Goodyear tires on my vehicle now and I am very pleased with the way they have performed. Goodyear is the most popular brand amongst our customers too; It’s a name brand that everyone knows, they offer great incentives on their products, and generally speaking people are very happy with their Goodyear tires.