How to change F&I perceptions: Five tips for post-COVID selling

MFG EV Sales

In this article: COVID-19 and regulatory scrutiny have put extra pressure on the finance and insurance sector, so now’s the time to prove your skills are on point. Alphera Director Spencer Halil gives his tips for improving your skills.

1. Stay up to date

Make sure that you’re fully up to date with what’s expected of you, and demand that your lender supports you in that. If they refuse, then you need to find another lender.

Bear in mind that customer expectations will probably be different now. They may have been furloughed or have some anxieties over whether or not their employment is secure. Your own knowledge around some of these concerns may need to be refreshed.

2. Get used to socially distanced selling

It’s really important that dealers know what constitutes a distance sale and what that means for their business in terms of their responsibilities to the customer. Clearly, a customer has heightened cancellation rights in a distance sale, for instance. And it’s very important that you use the right documentation with the customer to avoid creating problems further down the road.

3. Don’t forget to use digital tools

There are many ways to stay in touch with customers: email, phone, and even Zoom or Skype. Using some of these tools will allow you to support the customer even when there is less face-to-face interaction, maintaining that all-important sense of connection.

4. Understand the customer

The suitability of the product for the customer is first and foremost in F&I, and in a post-COVID world that’s more important than ever. For example, a customer might be looking at a product that no longer fits their needs. If we take it for granted that what we knew about that customer before COVID still applies now, we may be doing them a disservice. You need to renew your understanding of what that customer’s circumstances are. Give the customer good, clear, objective advice – even if that advice is, “Don’t buy now, let’s talk again in six months’ time.”

5. Get accredited

he Alphera team has always maintained that accreditation is of paramount importance. That’s because the biggest challenge facing this sector is that the level of professionalism and competence within our industry is not well understood by customers. Accreditation is the critical missing link.

Head over to the IMI’s F&I accreditation pathway pages to find out more about how it could boost your career

This is an edited extract from IMI's new MotorPro magazine, received free as part of IMI membership. Time to find out more about becoming a member of the most influential community in UK automotive…?