The Four Types of Customers You’ll Encounter

Customer experience is an important factor in boosting sales at your dealership.

The CBT Automotive Network reported that “54% of consumers would buy from a dealership that offers their preferred experience even if it did not have the lowest price.” That statistic shows how much customers value a positive shopping experience.

Relating well to your customers is a vital step towards providing them with a great experience with your dealership.

According to a 2018 Deloitte Global Automotive Consumer Study, trust in the dealership increased from 63% to 74% after the customer interacted positively with the salesperson. 

Understanding the four types of customers you’ll encounter, can help you create a better shopping experience for them.

A better experience increases the possibility of selling the vehicle and cultivating a long-standing customer lifecycle.

Get to Know the Four Types of Customers

Your sales and service team will deal with many different customers each day. These people all have differing personalities, lifestyles, and needs.

You’ll likely encounter four types of customers. Some of them may even be blends of these varying types:

  • Impulsive
  • Sensible
  • Easygoing
  • Difficult

Consider the following four types of customers and how you can teach your team to identify and effectively sell them on purchasing from your dealership:

1. The Impulsive Customer

The impulsive buyer is driven by emotions and does not have the best impulse control. When shopping, they rely more on sentimentality than logic.

When you talk to an impulsive customer, they’ll likely share how they feel when they take the car for a test drive instead of exclaiming over some of the new great features.

Identifying Impulsive Customers

If you want to reach these impulsive customers, you first need to identify them. Consider the following factors that will help your team identify these types of customers:

  • They look for immediate satisfaction in their purchases.
  • These buyers equate the shopping process with stress relief.
  • They buy a vehicle for appearance’s sake.
  • These customers will likely be expressive and emotional.

Approach for Selling to Them

Once you identify an impulsive customer, you will need to tailor your sales approach to make a positive connection with them. The following strategy can help:

  • Connection – Impulsive buyers want to feel a connection with your sales and service team. Be approachable and make them feel like they’re talking to a friend.
  • Understanding – Focus on keeping your sales pitch and comments sensitive since these impulsive customers may get hurt easily by insensitivity. 
  • Experience – Engage them with a sensory experience. For example, focus on how they feel when they take a test drive or see the vehicle.

2. The Sensible Customer

Sensible customers are the opposite of impulsive. These are people who begin researching vehicles and dealerships online long before they step into a showroom. 

Be prepared for these sensible customers to have a list of questions to ask you about every feature on the car that they researched online studiously.

Be patient and walk them through the answers. They will sense if you get impatient with them.

Identifying Sensible Customers

You can connect with these critical thinkers by first identifying them and understanding what makes them tick:

  • These customers usually speak in an intelligent and refined manner.
  • They don’t generally show a lot of emotions like impulsive buyers.
  • These are people who want to take their time with the buying process.
  • They need to know that they are making the right decision.

Approach for Selling to Them

After identifying the sensible customer, personalize your selling approach to increase your chances of making a sale. Use the following method when speaking with them:

  • Patience – An important factor to remember is that you need to allow these customers to fully embrace the car buying process. Be patient with them.
  • Expertise – Now is the time to shine. These buyers will relate to knowledge. They want to know that you are giving them expert advice.
  • Facts – These buyers will see through any exaggerations you make. Focus on only providing the facts and helping them navigate through the process.

3. The Easygoing Customer

Easygoing customers are friendly and generally straightforward in what they are looking for during the vehicle buying process. They know what they want, and this can make the sales process easy for everyone.

These customers usually focus on personal interaction and enjoy communicating with others. They don’t like conflict and want things to move smoothly.

Identifying Easygoing Customers

Improve your chances of making a sale when you identify easygoing customers by keeping the following factors in mind:

  • These customers are friendly and will try to connect with salespeople.
  • Easygoing people are generally good listeners and will ask questions.
  • These people tend to hold back true feelings since they’re introverted.
  • They avoid conflict and may not want to rock the boat.

Approach for Selling to Them

Identifying easygoing customers will make it easier for your sales and service team to connect with them. They can use the following strategy for selling to them:

  • Reassurance – Take the time to make these easygoing, introverted customers feel comfortable. Reassure them that you are on their side.
  • Guidance – These customers want to know that your sales team is not just trying to sell to them, but will guide them through the sales process.
  • Attentive – Show these customers that you care about them and are paying attention to what they want and need, and care about what’s important to them.

4. The Difficult Customer

Difficult customers may be a challenge. However, if you can figure out how to effectively connect with them, you can make the sales process smoother and more enjoyable for everyone involved.

These people generally tend to be extremely focused and self-confident. They can come across as pushy, which may be disconcerting to some of your sales or service team members.

Identifying Difficult Customers

Difficult customers are usually easy to spot because they are bold and generally have a commanding presence. Use the following factors to help identify these people:

  • These customers will likely display an “in charge” attitude.
  • They are expressive but deliberate with all of their actions.
  • These people may seem distant but are not heartless—just very focused.
  • You’ll likely notice that these customers are confident negotiators.

Approach for Selling to Them

Tailor your sales approach to these difficult customers by understanding what makes them so bold and goal oriented. Implement the following strategy to help your sales and service team truly connect with these direct customers:

  • Simple – These direct customers value a simple approach that gets straight to the point. Don’t waste their time with frivolous details that get in the way.
  • Professionalism – Be professional since these customers generally come from professional backgrounds and value these types of interactions.
  • Acknowledgment – Let these customers know that you understand they have goals and want to help them achieve that through the sales process.

Embracing Trends for Augmented Customer Experiences in 2020

When you understand the four types of customers, you can help them better navigate the various experience trends that are on the horizon for 2020:

  • Deeper dive into analytics for enhanced insights into customer needs/wants
  • AI-driven customer experience with bots integrated for 24/7 support
  • Communication with customers via messaging apps like Facebook Messenger
  • AR/VR tech to augment the experience with 3D models and virtual tours
  • Optimized knowledge bases for simplified self-help for customers
  • Online content that meets Google’s E-A-T guidelines to educate consumers
  • Optimized online content for a better online experience through Voice Search

Knowing how to connect more effectively with an impulsive customer will give you the insight to understand that they would enjoy the augmented reality (AR) technology to show them simple changes to colors or finishes on a vehicle.

Learning about sensible customers who thrive on facts and figures will give your sales team a unique advantage. They can use virtual reality (VR) technology—that you may already be using on your website—to walk them through a virtual tour with a 360-degree view of a vehicle’s interior and discuss various features before taking the car for a test drive. 

Easygoing customers who want a personalized experience with attention and guidance will respond positively to a salesperson who shares how the team at your dealership can communicate with them through messaging apps.

Since difficult customers flourish in situations where they are in control, embrace the 2020 customer experience trend of online content that meets Google’s guidelines for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. During the sales process, share the educational content you provide on your blog with them.

Effectively Connect with Customers in 2020

Prepare to deliver superior service to the four types of customers you’ll encounter in 2020.

Give impulsive buyers the superior sensory experience that satisfies them. Share your expertise and facts with sensible buyers who are driven by logic.

Give guidance to easygoing customers who want to know you are giving them the attention they want. Make the sales process easier for difficult customers by being professional and delivering a direct sales approach. 

Contact the professional team at J&L Marketing today to start planning your strategy for connecting with customers in 2020 effectively.

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