How to run a successful auto dealership

If you are floating the idea of opening an auto dealership, congratulations on daring to dream bigger with respect to your life situation.

While it may not be easy to launch and grow this sort of enterprise, people do it everyday by following a certain set of routines.

If you want to be as successful as Robert Bassam, be sure to follow the tips that we will discuss in the paragraphs below…


1) Strongly consider franchising over building from scratch

While many entrepreneurs fall in love with the idea of owning their own dealership, building a business from the ground up is hard work and fraught with risk.

The latter point is especially true in the capital-intensive car industry, where a lull in demand can leave you stranded with pricey merchandise and a pile of bills to pay.

By investing in a franchise, you will be granted a playbook that will allow you to follow a formula that has worked for countless franchisees before you.

While you won’t have 100% control over the business, it will pay for itself by relieving a lot of the stress that goes with calling all of the shots yourself.

2) Always be promoting 

In many areas, there will be plenty of auto dealerships competing for the business of consumers. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get involved, as if there is a gap in the market that you know that you can fill, it would be a crime if you didn’t.

But with the established players already occupying a prime position in the minds of area residents, you will need to sell yourself effectively if you want to exit your first year in good shape.

Using traditional and social media, introduce yourself to your target market with an offer that many will find hard to refuse.

Executed with a good balance of hype and value, you will soon find your dealership finding your way into the conversations of people that are looking to purchase a new or used vehicle in the near future.

3) Hire the right people

Running an auto dealership is a lot of work, so it goes without saying that you’ll need to hire employees to make sure everything runs the way it should.

As such, the people that you end up hiring will go a long way towards determining whether or not your business will be a success in the long term.

Hiring salespeople that are effective but have a concept of ethics (focusing on short-term results at the expense of building a dedicated clientele is a sure way to sink your dealership) is vitally important, so be sure to adequately vet each and every one of your hires.

4) Offer a wide variety of new and used models

While the cars that you will stock will depend greatly on what your target market looks like, having a limited selection of vehicles will limit your success. If the customer can’t find what they are looking for at your dealership, they will find it at a competitors.

Having a variety of solutions for a range of budgets, demographics, and occupations means that when a prospective customer is not satisfied with the first vehicle that is suggested to them, you will have a fallback that they might like better.