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Does Your Dealership Know The Real Cost of Lost Keys?

Lost keys. Every dealership has been there at one time or another. A guest walks in the door, prepared to buy, and explains exactly what they’re looking for. Your salesperson is excited because they know they have the perfect car on the lot and they're sure your guest will love it. They tell this guest a little bit about it and go to grab the keys...and they’re missing.

Your salesperson mutters a few choice words under their breath and starts checking countertops and asking around. They dig in their pockets and ask the other sales associates to check theirs. Nothing. They look the car up in the system to make sure it’s still on the lot. It is.

Even if someone in your dealership ends up finding the keys before your guest leaves, your salesperson is embarrassed and upset and naturally, so are you. At your dealership, you work hard to provide excellent service and create satisfied customers. This is not a step in the right direction.

Lost keys translate into lost time

When members of your sales team are busy tracking down keys, they waste precious time. Over the course of a day, your team might collectively waste a half an hour searching for keys...time they could have used to help an additional guest. This translates into three wasted hours that could have been allocated towards helping six additional guests each week.

This leads to the second point.

Lost keys translate into lost revenue

Guest traffic through your doors ebbs and flows. You may have a quiet Tuesday morning but Saturday morning you’re slammed with people who are waiting around to be helped. Your sales team is working with two guests simultaneously to let them know that their needs are a priority. The last thing you want to do is make your guests wait any longer than necessary.

Lost keys can cause a far greater backlog of waiting guests and it’s not uncommon for guests to leave if they wait around for a long time without a salesperson coming to assist them. Every guest that leaves without being helped is potentially a lost deal. Lost deals are lost revenue, plain and simple.

Even guests you’re able to assist may be less than impressed if you're wasting their time digging for lost keys or they can’t test drive a vehicle on your lot because the key is nowhere to be found. “But we have another car on our lot I think you might like…” #salesfail

It’s also important to remember that many guests do a lot of research online before showing up at your dealership. They arrive with a list of specific vehicles they want to see and they have a lot of information about each one. In many cases, your sales team isn’t introducing your guests to your inventory and educating them. They’re granting their wishes.

When these educated guests come into your dealership with their lists of vehicles they want to see, feel, smell and test drive, you’re on the cusp of a slam-dunk sale. Again, lost keys—lost revenue.

Ultimately, when keys go missing and aren’t recovered, they must be replaced. At around $400 per set, replacements aren’t cheap. Dealerships report spending over $10k each month to replace lost keys!


Lost keys affect your dealership’s image

There’s nothing more powerful than a testimonial from a happy customer. Conversely, when a guest leaves your dealership without being served or if they feel like their time was wasted by a disorganized salesperson, word gets out. They tell their friends and they post a negative review on Yelp or Google. This tarnishes the reputation you’ve worked so hard to establish. Over time, many dealerships rack up a host of bad reviews and experience a direct decline in foot traffic and sales.

If you want to maintain a stellar reputation in your community or if you’re losing customers to your competitors, implementing MDD’s real-time key-tracking system can help you save time, grow your bottom line and invest in your reputation.

Contact us today to learn more!

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