As we go into August the world of car sales has been yo-yoing, with some industry insiders saying business is brisk with plenty of buyer demand while others saying its tough out there and getting tougher.
Certainly cars which really have unique selling points are still making a premium whereas run of the mill volume type examples are selling purely on price. This is actually fine so long as there are enough customers that are interested.
As we have often pointed out the long term supply chain will come under pressure and car dealers will inevitably be forced to adjust their selling parameters.
This especially affects franchised dealers who, for a variety of reasons all of which have been mentioned before, are still unable to get their act together and retail older cars to fill the vacuum which will be created by the shrinking car parc.
Independent dealers are far more flexible and will pretty much sell any car which they can make a margin on regardless of age, and are also far more able when it comes to overcoming issues such as reconditioning costs.
It is no surprise that there are now some very successful independent dealers who are selling prestige cars which main dealers can’t or won’t. By offering a very credible alternative to the buying public and in many ways showing the franchised sector how car retailing should be done they are delivering a great service.
With the advancement in retailing of cars via the internet showroom facilities have become less of an issue. By meeting presentation standards and micro marketing their stock independent dealers are ahead of the game when it comes to offering a range of different cars.
Flexibility during times of upheaval is the key and franchised dealers just aren’t that flexible to adapt quickly enough, and for many involved it’s like watching a car crash in slow motion whilst being powerless to do anything about it.
Franchised dealers will be well advised to switch on to selling older models of their own franchises or risk seeing their order bank shrink considerably.