Fixing Fixed Absorption Finally — Say this 10 times real fast

Calculating fixed absorption is one of the most important business-strength measurements a serious dealership investor can make. In case you aren’t savvy on this, fixed absorption is a calculation of the gross profit generated in the “fix
May 24, 2010

Stop Using a Butter Knife in a Gun Fight

I have been thrashing The Garage drum (check out for a number of columns now. We and a hundred of our closest dealer friends have learned quite a bit this past year, both from victories and gaffes while implementing this un
Apr 16, 2010

Corina Diehl, Diehl Auto Group

Corina Diehl has been a dealer for three years, owner of the Diehl Auto Group in Butler, PA, a small town a few miles north of Pittsburgh. A devastating personal tragedy brought her into the business a year before the collapse of 2008 and 2009. Yet,
Apr 10, 2010

Take Video Off the ‘To Do’ List

For many dealers the message is becoming clear that it’s time to get video off the “to do” list and onto the Internet to capitalize on what customers have demonstrated is their preferred method of receiving information. A recent panel of automo
Apr 10, 2010

Selling Cars in the Post-Control World

The battle is over. The customer now controls the car-buying process, and it is up to the dealer to support, advise and encourage the customer along the way to the sale. Dealer actions that seek to control the process — such as hiding informati
Apr 10, 2010

Convert Used Car Buyers into Lifetime Service Customers

Less than 10% of used car buyers return to the dealership for customer-pay service work. But don’t take my word for it. Run the numbers and see for yourself. Run the VIN numbers for all the used vehicles you sold in 2009 and compare it to the VIN n
Apr 10, 2010

Where’s the Trust?

I had the pleasure of speaking at the AutoTeam America CFO Forum on Friday afternoon before the official opening of the NADA Convention.  The event is always well attended by dealers of all brands along with their financial personnel.  Based on the
Apr 10, 2010

Traits of a Strong Compliance Officer

I apologize up front if what I am about to write offends you. I am not a fan of country music. Even though my Dad dragged me out of bed when I was five years old every Sunday morning to listen to a four-hour concert of Flatt & Scriggs and Bill Mo
Apr 1, 2010

Driving Better Closing Results: Experts share their closing secrets

The close is the ultimate measurement of the effectiveness of a sales process.  Retailers around the world go through countless steps to drive interest in their product but it is wasted energy if it doesn’t translate into sales.  Really nice and
Apr 1, 2010