People are interested in knowing what their vehicle is worth, and Kelley Blue Book is smart enough to have teamed with dealers to deliver their KBB Instant Cash Offer leads. Roughly half of all our DealerKnows’ clients are either a KBB ICO Buying Center or Trade-in Center. You must first recognize that this is a vehicle acquisition play and NOT a sales strategy.
If consumers are seeking info on the value of their current vehicle, then somewhere in the back of their mind, they’re considering selling it or trading it in. Understand, the first thing we need to discuss with them with a KBB Instant Cash Offer lead hits your CRM is their trade, not what new or used vehicle they want to trade it in for. That can come later. Far later. You mustn’t look at the closing ratio of your KBB ICO leads and think it is underperforming. It is about how many cars, trucks, and SUVs you purchase through these leads.
However, engagement rates typically are lower on Buying Center leads (customers that have submitted their info in your area on Kelley Blue Book) vs Trade-in Center leads (customers that have submitted their info on the KBB Instant Cash Offer tool on your dealership website). Moreover, Buying Center lead volume, if in a largely populated area, can drown a BDC in opportunities or kill the productivity of lead handlers. They must be managed wholly different than a typical Internet sales lead.
The 4 ways you can win over KBB Instant Cash Offer prospects
- Buying Outright
When a KBB ICO Buying Center shopper submits their contact info on for a KBB instant cash offer to see their vehicle’s value, they don’t always expect to hear from a dealership immediately. Make it clear that you are first and foremost interested in buying their vehicle and are more than willing to buy it outright. If they don’t desire a vehicle on your lot, they don’t have to trade it in. You’ll purchase it outright. You can always offer the test drive when they get there. (So many shoppers don’t realize this.)
- Speed of Process
They need to understand that the information they submitted online will speed up their time in the store (where they are hesitant to go already). Make it clear that the entire appraisal (or “condition check” as we refer to it in DealerKnows sales training) will take no longer than 15-20 minutes tops. If you can’t appraise and put a buy/trade figure on a vehicle in that time, fix your process to do so.
Knowing that these prospects are reluctant to come into a dealership, they need to know why we must see their vehicles. Simply put, beyond the condition check I noted above, “we just need to confirm the quality and drivability of your vehicle.” It makes sense. They drive ours before they buy it (usually), and we prefer to drive theirs. (That is if your goal is to set an appraisal and acquisition appointment with KBB ICO leads. Otherwise… see #4)
- Sight Unseen
Dealers who have created a dedicated and structured process around delivering sight-unseen, realistic appraisals are winning sellers over. Adding in the ability to offer vehicle pick-up and check drop-off services makes it even more convenient for the seller. Requesting pics of their vehicles, signing “Statement of Fact” and “VIN Verification forms”, and checking the vehicle history report (along with vAuto) should give any dealer ample confidence to put sight-unseen buy/trade figures on any vehicle.
Provide a better consumer experience
Whether the goal is for the appraisal appointment or for the acquisition, our goal aligns with the Kelley Blue Book customer. As dealers, we simply need to understand their motivation, use the proper sales techniques, embrace the correct messaging, have the right team in place, and build the process around the outcome. Do this, and KBB Instant Cash Offer leads are a valuable source to add quality vehicles to your used car inventory. If you don’t have the messaging or structure in place, this source of vehicle acquisition leads could waste valuable time and resources. You decide.