Setting Realistic Sales Goals
Setting Realistic Sales Goals

Achieving sales volume goals is one of the biggest challenges any automotive salesperson or agent faces. This is a pretty straightforward industry. If you’re not making the cut, you can quickly find yourself cut from the team. There are so many factors that can affect that final number that you have to stay on top of every aspect of your sales activities and keep making client contacts.

If you aren’t truly excited about the product you are offering, it will show in your demeanor or in some little thing you say or do while with potential clients. They’ll sense it and little doubts and fears will arise in them about purchasing from you. So, first and foremost, in order to achieve anything in this business, you have to believe in your line of products, in the companies you represent and in your own ability to excite others about them.

Let’s assume for now, though, that you do have the knowledge, the belief and the right attitude in place. How do you set and achieve the sales goals? Start by setting a financial goal for yourself for the year. Break it down into quarters and months. Is the monthly goal realistic? If not, you either need to downsize your goal or super-size your skills. You decide.

Next, consider the average amount you earn on a typical sale. Divide that into your monthly earning goal to see how many products you need to sell and clients you need to sign up this month. Consider your gut reaction and first thoughts when you see that number. Is it one of “Hey, I can do that.” Or, is it, “Wow! How am I going to do that?”

If it seems easy, consider increasing your sales goal. If it seems like it will be a challenge, good. Your goal should be something that both excites you and makes you stretch a bit each month. When you’re in stretch-mode, you’ll be open to learning new ways of connecting with people. You’ll look forward to making follow up calls and contacting those who are referred to you. You’ll get out of bed in the morning with excitement to face the day and accomplish something positive.

This next step in achieving your goals is critical: Multiply your sales ratio by the number of products determined above to learn how many people you need to connect with this month. Do you typically sell every fourth dealership you meet with? If so, your ratio is 1:4. If you need to get people happily involved in 10 new products to achieve your earnings goal, you’ll need to meet 40 of them in order to do so. That’s when the law of averages is working with you.

Is it realistic for you to meet 40 people this month? If not, again, you either downsize your goals or learn new and better ways to meet people, put them at ease and get them to like you, trust you and want to listen to you.

That’s the bottom line of what selling is all about. People buy from people they like. If you’re not like-able, you’re out of luck. If you’re not knowledgeable, they won’t trust you. If you want people to listen to you and to take your advice, you have to learn to listen to them. If you ask questions and get them talking, they’ll tell you exactly what they need in terms of filling product holes and needs at their dealership.

So, in getting back to these 40 people you need to meet this month, where are you going to connect with them? Hopefully, you’re not one of those salespeople who waits in the lot, hoping the company advertising campaign will bring ‘em in droves. To achieve your automotive selling goals, you have to invest time in reaching out to people all on your own.

Call your past clients to see if they’re still happy with their products. These calls shouldn’t take more than two minutes each. It’s just a way of touching base, making them feel important and giving them an opportunity to tell you if they’re happy or if they still have issues to resolve. If they’re happy, you have the right to ask them for referral business. If they’re not, you need to know about it because their unhappiness can cost you a lot of future business.

Knowing your target for meeting people is the way to achieve the sales goals you’re reaching for.

About the author

Tom Hopkins


Tom Hopkins is world renowned for teaching practical, how-to selling strategies. His training increases competence and builds confidence when it comes to qualifying, presenting and closing sales. Or, Click Here to download a free e-book titled, “6 Practical Tips for Making More Automotive Sales.”

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