Why a Hybrid Sales Process will be in EVERY dealership by 2023


Even before Covid, the sales process was changing to keep up with consumer demands. Consumers are doing more research online than ever before, and more customers are using online tools to start their sales process. Customers use website credit applications, trade value estimators, chat services, and BUY NOW buttons to initiate the sales process.

Internal changes to the sales process are also happening. Your sales force is much more likely to demand a 40-hour workweek and frequently in 8-hour shifts. The classic bell-to-bell work environment is fading fast because dealerships have difficulty finding employees willing to work 60 hours or more a week.

The Hybrid sales process is for modern selling. 

The modern customer wants the sales process time reduced but also wants the assistance of the dealership. They are not experts in vehicle purchasing, and most customers still rely on dealership professionals to help them get through the buying process. The dealership needs to provide the assistance customers desire, from complete online purchasing to 100% dealership-only visits and everything in between. The in-between means dealerships must provide a Modern Deal Management process, on the phone, in chats, through texting, by email, and any other way the customer wants to connect into the dealership sales process. 

Fortunately, a Modern Deal Management platform like CreditIQ can connect the customer to the dealership in all those forms. Every customer flows into the Modern Deal Management system no matter where they enter the sales process. Every deal goes through one sales process. All the customer data regarding the sale is on one platform, and any dealership team member can pick up the deal at any time. The easy handoff ability works much better for employees working a 40-hour workweek as available team members can easily pick up deals. 

The Modern Deal Management Hybrid sales process is also much faster. A customer who desires to do the entire process online can have a funding-approved purchase done in about 30 minutes. Customers going through the showroom process can get F&I done in minutes and never leave the salesperson’s desk. Since Modern Deal Management is ONE hybrid process, the showroom customer uses most of the same tools for credit, trade, lender funding, etc., that online customers use. The process usually takes a little more time because of the casual relationship and personal service of the sales associate.

The hybrid sales process needs fast and accurate F&I results from all team members. CreditIQ’s ProfitIQ ads guard rails to the F&I process while making it much easier for non-expert F&I managers to submit the deal to lenders. Again, it’s the same process online customers use to finalize their funding. The built-in guard rails show lender decisions that maximize deal profits. All deals are reviewable by senior management if desired, but most deals flow through without needing any adjustments. The added simplicity increases PVR as customers accept full spread APR offers and buy protection products 8% more frequently than the traditional “F&I Box” process.

A hybrid sales process may sound scary to many dealerships, but it’s just a minor upgrade to what they currently are trying to provide their customers. It’s simpler because it’s one process that every team member uses. Customers feel more comfortable with the sales process flow and enjoy the personalized service much more than being handed off to different departments. The hybrid process works perfectly for customers because it goes from an easy sale process to a vehicle delivery process quickly!

My crystal ball, which I admit is NOT perfect, says that dealers need to start shifting to a hybrid system sooner rather than later. Dealers currently using the hybrid system are getting more sales per employee (40%-60% more) and driving down costs. Employee turnover (after re-stabilization) drops, and backend costs get reduced by the modern digital features used in the hybrid Modern Deal Management process. Change, especially one that includes cultural elements for the dealership, is never easy. This year, dealerships are having great financial success, and many won’t want to upset the apple cart. However, this is the perfect time to create a hybrid sales process for your entire group and get ahead of the transition curve.

If you are interested in learning more about CreditIQ’s enterprise-level hybrid Modern Deal Management platform for your group or your dealership, please reach out to us at – sales@creditiq.com 

Kent Mihlbauer
Author: Kent Mihlbauer