F&I and Showroom, the industry's leading source for F&I, sales and technology
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VALUE STATEMENT 14 unconventional at the time. "The whole team that came in and met with us was really bright," Welch says. "Everyone was really smart. They were able to look at each kind of deal that we have, whether it's a vehicle we ship, whether it's one we do in person, whether it's one we're fnancing." Ally also stepped up when Williams and Welch needed an additional 300,000-square-foot, tilt- wall facility to fuel their growth plan, which called for monthly sales to increase from 1,500 units to 2,000 units. "They were there immediately," Welch says. "They wanted to go on tour, wanted to see the facility and wanted to talk about what our needs were going to be so they could marry that up and help us grow our business. "We trust them to do what they say they're going to do," Welch adds. "We trust them to be there tomorrow." Williams adds: "Being able to talk to a fnance provider, having them understand your needs from a business perspective and backing that up with action — that's important." Fueling Growth West Loop Mitsubishi's Day, who also owns Lone Star Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Lone Star Finding the Secret Sauce Bill Smith, dealer principal for Bill Smith Buick GMC in Cullman, Ala., says he's discovered why Ally really does have the "secret sauce" for F&I sales improvement. But he admits he wasn't always a believer. Smith's realization came after signing up for Ally's Blueprint for Dealer Growth program. The Ally account executive assigned to his operation, Stephen Pate, had to do some convincing before he agreed to sell the GM Protection Plan vs. the third-party product already on his store's F&I menu. Even his F&I managers were leery of the change, but their skepticism melted away once they saw how customers responded to Ally Auto Dealer Products and Services' service contract offering. "Our service contract penetration and average proﬁt per service contract rose together when we switched to GMPP," Smith says. "With our former provider we had a 27 percent penetration with an average proﬁt per contract of $401. Today, with GMPP, we have 45 percent penetration with an average proﬁt of $977. That's enough for an additional $30,000 to $40,000 per month." Smith says his F&I managers are also staunch supporters of GMPP. They also understand the value of Ally's Dealer Rewards program, which rewards dealers the more they use Ally's products and services. And they especially appreciate that their dealership is a member of Ally's Champions Club, an exclusive group of top-performing dealers who retain wholesale ﬂoorplans with Ally. "Their income went way up, as did the dealership's," Smith notes. "Customers are happier, employees are happier, and we are more proﬁtable." Smith's father launched the company in 1956, and Smith bought the family business in 2007 — just before the economic meltdown took hold. It was a struggle, Smith admits. But he says he learned more in that period of time than he did in the 20 years he's spent in the car business. "The store is very proﬁtable, and we're proud of all of our peer groups and CSI — that's probably our No. 1 achievement," he says, adding that his dealership runs at a retail sales index of 200 percent. "In the state we're ranked between No. 1 and No. 2 in GMC-Buick dealer sales."