YOUR Return on Investment is MY Business©



January 7, 2016




In the Service Department, sales success depends on a great process.

If you go through the same consistent process each time you will yield better results.


You will definitely surprise yourself about exactly WHO buys what they need when you present to EVERYONE.

Remember, some customers will actually say “All I want is an oil change” or even “Don’t try to sell me something.”

In a case like that, as an Advisor, it’s still an obligation to let customers know what they need and why.

By following your process, some of this type of customer will actually convert to REAL buyers!


It’s challenging when you are super busy to hit all of the process steps with passion.

The trick is to not make your “All hands on deck” mode devoid of the important part…..SELLING!


Here are the basic bullets to Service Sales Strategies© a solid Service Advisor Sales Process…..


  • Research customer appointment details a day or so prior and CREATE A PLAN for their needs based on history and previous recommendations
  • On Customer arrival focus on the prime concern first, then WALKAROUND the car with a focus on at least these 3 items
    1. CYA – “Cover Your Assets” by pointing out prior damage (Offer a FREE estimate for the repair if capable at your store)
    2. Ask about or test the performance of their WIPER BLADES and offer to replace them if they are needed
    3. Gauge their tires and mention the general condition of their tires and any immediate concerns
  • Ask to rotate the tires if customer is coming in for an oil change in an assumptive manor, make it seem important….it will save your customer money over time
  • Offer to perform the required maintenance AT THE MIEAGE INTERVAL ON THE ODOMETER AT THIS MOMENT
  • Obtain approval to review the results of your FREE inspection after it is completed “I’ll let you know if there is anything else the technician sees that we need to pay attention to, with my customers I want no surprises, OK?”
  • Research history  – Create a plan to use in concert with the MPI results –

o   Ensure we are offering the same services as last time if some were postponed, be consistent in offering it again to build credibility

  • Inspect the car first and present any additional needed services within 15 minutes of arrival and before the customer is “Over it”

o   Take the customer dirty filters and compare to fresh ones

o   Bring customer to the vehicle on safety issues

  • Prepare a Prioritized Estimate Sheet©  – This is FOR YOU….to both ORGANIZE your customers’ needs based on PRIME CONCERN, NEEDS NOW and MAINTENANCE items…..and to use as a presentation tool
  • Prepare your MPI form to show the customer – leave prices OFF your MPI form….it can distract your customer from what you are telling them.
  • Anything over $XXX.XX (fill in the blank for your store, probably around $200) present the CONSUMER CREDIT offering at your dealership…..HIGHLIGHT the SAME AS CASH features
  • Anything more than just a couple of filters, take the customer to your designated “Closing Cube” if you don’t have one, figure out a spot you can take the customer or bring them to your desk to explain your findings. Use your point of sale materials like brake and tire displays. Try NOT to do it in front of other customers. Also do this when everything is Green to give them a “healthy report” or a “needs soon” list if there are Yellow or upcoming service requirements.
  • Explain the Estimate using the Prioritized Presentation Technique –

o   Start with the Prime Concern and RELATED to prime jobs

o   Compliment the condition of the vehicle when appropriate and review GREEN Tires, Brakes and Battery when they are green.

o   Move to IMMEDIATE NEEDS and related items (Sell a brake flush as RELATED to part of the brake service…. etc.)

o   Next explain the items that your customer needs to “catch up” or that are preventative maintenance or YELLOW

o   Give the GRAND TOTAL price as the FIRST PRICE GIVEN, ask for the sale and wait for your customers response

o   If not all accepted, be ready to explain ”What YOU would prioritize and why” offer your PLAN “B” and be silent again to hear your customers response.

o   If you are completely denied, leave the white copy of the MPI inspection form, sometimes people will change their mind

  • Set your customers next service appointment reminder by making a statement not asking a question “I set your next Service reminder for 6 months out and we will call you ahead to reschedule if needed, OK?
  • Impress on your customer through actions, mannerism and words that YOU WANT TO BE “Their Person” in the car business for ALL OF THEIR NEEDS. Invite them to bring cars that have never been to your store for a special discounted oil change.
  • MANAGERS: Spend time in the drive DAILY to make sure your players are executing and coach them if and when needed, set goals, post numbers and results and call people to action when DAILY when required.


Good luck and make it pay!



John actually has perfected a service department selling skills training program for Advisors, technicians and their managers. Let me tell you, if you follow it, it works!

~ Dealer Principal – Mid sized Honda Dealership Read more testimonials

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