According to Street Directory, shopping around is the quickest way to get a great deal on a car. Dealerships often price cars differently, so comparing prices can help you save money. Clean facilities are another sign of a good dealership. Look for an organized lobby, clean bathrooms, and a well-maintained car lot.
Visit Multiple Dealerships
The car dealership industry is known for being dishonest and misleading, but this is not always true. The best way to find a trustworthy dealership, for instance, Turner Kia, is to visit multiple locations and compare prices. Dealership inventory varies, and visiting several of them increases the likelihood that you’ll be able to get the body style and color you want.
Many people think buying a vehicle is one transaction, but it’s three: the new car price, the trade-in value, and the financing. Dealerships earn money from each transaction, so you must compare prices from different locations before purchasing.
Look for BBB Accreditation
A BBB membership offers two benefits to a business. First, it is a mark of trust that can help build consumer confidence. It also provides a space for companies to resolve customer issues. The organization offers conciliation, mediation, informal dispute resolution, and conditionally binding arbitration options.
Aside from establishing trust, becoming BBB accredited allows businesses to use BBB’s trusted logo. This is a significant competitive advantage, especially since many consumers look for this mark of trust.
BBB accreditation is not accessible, however. Businesses must pay annual dues used to operate and maintain the organization. Some critics argue that this can create a conflict of interest since businesses fund the organization. Aside from that, the BBB is a well-established and respected organization.
Check Online Reputation
Car buyers scour online reviews before they ever step into a dealership. Positive reviews function as social proof, instilling trust and credibility in potential customers. Negative reviews can have the opposite effect, driving away consumers.
Google even factors in online reviews when determining local search rankings. Car dealers need to encourage their customers to leave reviews. They should also regularly monitor their online reputation to ensure they appear first in search results consistently.
Replying to reviews thoughtfully and respectfully can also positively impact the dealership’s reputation. Remember to constantly internally assess customer feedback before responding, especially to negative comments. Doing so will prevent the impulsive reaction that can damage your reputation.
Do Your Research
A dealer can profit reasonably from their car sales, but it’s essential to research before stepping foot on a dealership lot. Research makes and models you are interested in, read expert and consumer reviews and compare prices. Getting preapproved financing for your new or used car before visiting a dealership is also a good idea.
Doing so will give you a baseline that you can use to compare the terms offered by the dealership’s finance department. Be careful of dealers that push add-on options, like paint and fabric protection, rustproofing, or different security systems.
These add-ons will often increase your loan-to-value ratio and cost you more in the long run, primarily if they are financed. You can usually find these products and services at lower prices outside the dealership.
Many dealers will try to sneak in add-ons like factory warranties and rustproofing. These can run thousands of dollars and are often overpriced. They’re also often unnecessary and can be purchased at much lower prices through your lender or car insurance company.
Another way to save is to get pre-approved for a loan before you go to a dealership. This gives you leverage and lets the dealer know that you have other financing options, which makes them more likely to settle on a price that works for both parties.
Finally, don’t let your emotions get the best of you when negotiating at a dealership. Stay calm and firm, and be willing to walk away if you’re unhappy. You can always come back and buy a different vehicle elsewhere.