In this article, I want to keep it simple. Hit you right where it hurts, and get you thinking about a topic that should be front of mind….. Your Online Credit Application. I know, I know, it’s not the sexy, silky shiny stuff that movies are made of. No glamorous graphics, no music, flash or pizzazz. But, if you handle it right, it will flat out convert and sell cars for you.
Let me start with this statement: If your online credit application page is not in the top three converting forms on your site, you are in fact failing, wasting money, and letting consumers go elsewhere for the one piece of data they are most interested in: “What financing do I qualify for?”
Now here is where it gets fun. You will say, we have an application page, and it doesn’t convert anywhere near my other forms. Answer: YOUR FAULT. Why? Because you are being too intrusive, and frankly just plain rude. Let’s say for a second that we meet at a conference. We shake hands, introduce ourselves, and then the first thing I ask you for is your social security number. Right behind that I ask for your date of birth. You’re going to think, “Is this guy nuts?” “Did he really just ask me for that information out of the blue?” “What makes him think I would EVER give him that info?” Why not. You do it every single day, to every consumer that comes onto your virtual property.t
Fact is, you wouldn’t provide it for a number of reasons. And every single one of those reasons, is exactly why your consumer doesn’t want to give it to you! Yet, we continue to ask for it. Day after day, consumer visit after consumer visit. We’re like the homeless guy looking for cigarette butts in the public ash tray. Sure, he may get one every now and then, but let’s face it, he probably would have been better off quitting all together, or saving up for his own pack. It is an exercise in futility.
So what do dealers do to get that ever so needed data to figure out what car to sell, and what bank to send the deal? Well, let’s start with one vendor whose product is real-time, and has all three bureau relationships. Let’s sign on with a vendor who actually can deliver real time data EXACTLY the way we see it on a hard pull. Hell, let’s get one that is fully FCRA compliant. The technology is out there, that delivers exactly what you want, when you want it, with regards to consumer profiles without consent to access it. Dig deep, and ingrain it within your process.
But if that seems like too much of a jump for you, well then let’s just start by discontinuing asking for those key identifiers, start by not asking for information that we have yet earned the right to ask for. More importantly, let’s stop being that guy (or girl). Let’s earn the right in the process, and maybe we will sell a few cars along the way. But hey, who am I to judge if hunting for the cigarette butts is your thing!