Business Growth

Maximizing Your Opportunities for Profit in 2023

Consumer demand for off-road, boats, and personal watercraft units remained strong for the first half of 2023. However, high prices and financial barriers have impacted sales. While powersports dealers were early movers in digital retailing, they need to take further advantage of this opportunity to strengthen online sales models to have a successful second half of 2023. In addition, a focus on localized financing and improved service capabilities for older models should offset potential revenue loss.

For the powersports and marine industries, the high-flying days of 2022 appear to have come to an end in the first half of 2023. While May dealership revenue growth notched an increase of 8.3 percent for service and sales according to Lightspeed DMS, growing economic concerns have prompted many buyers to delay purchases. The Powersports Business Q1 Dealer Survey reflected that dealers are split on their outlook for the remainder of the year with many leaning towards “somewhat worse” to “significantly worse.”

Although inventory issues have eased significantly and consumer demand remains strong, overcoming rising prices along with growing interest rates will be a tall order for dealers in the second half of the year. Bolstering online sales, taking a customer-focused approach to ownership, and increasing service capabilities to keep those units operating will deliver needed revenue regardless of any economic headwinds.

Online Sales Isn’t Just for Units

While listing available products online is key, there are many more tools available that can drive sales and improve local financing options. Make sure your sales team is meeting the customer where they are – whether it’s text, chat or direct message. Demonstrate different models via videos on YouTube, Instagram reels or TikTok. But most importantly, engage with the customer. Don’t expect to simply take an order.

With rising interest rates, many consumers can benefit from some financial education. First-time buyers may not understand the impact of good credit, or how the rate of financing can impact monthly payments. Certainly, savvy dealers will have financial details and online calculators available. Make sure your sales staff understand and clearly communicate the available financing options.

Service is another excellent opportunity to strengthen or expand your dealership’s online capabilities. Provide details about the type of service available, potential costs and anticipated time to repair. Surprisingly, some owners think repairing a unit is too costly or time consuming. Educate your customers on the options – and generate some valuable revenue.

Training for Success

Whether on the sales or service side of the dealership, now is the time to make sure your team is properly trained – not just on the units but also the available consumer protection products. Protection products increase the perceived value of purchasing with your dealership and can dramatically improve the cost to repair, resulting in higher customer satisfaction. The more your team is cross trained on the benefits of purchasing with your dealership, the better they will be at positioning it as the dealer of choice in your area.

While unit and product training is vital, so is training for online customers. Your staff is engaging with diverse groups on a plethora of platforms, from email to social media. Maximizing your dealership’s online presence starts with communication and education – both for your team and your customers.

Investing in your team with proven sales training that delivers revenue seems like a no-brainer. And we’re here to help. Our proven team of EFG trainers bring years of experience and proven curriculum that can refresh your sales team while helping you hire and retain new staff. Remember, at EFG Companies, we’re more than an F&I provider, we’re your business partner with years of expertise in the powersports industry.

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