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Woman Car Buyer Speaks!

Published Nov 6th 2006, 8:49pm by Patty Streeter in Featured Articles

WomankeyThis weekend I went car shopping and experienced the quintessential difference between what is an good car sales person and a poor one - on the same lot within 5 minutes.

I've already decided that I'll be going back to Toyota after a 10 year fling with GM; at 100,000 miles my Grand Am is breaking down with new ailments each week. The Corolla I had prior to that, however, went for 135,000 with not a hint of personal issues. Add the new hybrid mystic to the mix, and I'm ready to take the plunge again.

After much searching on the web and talking to friends, I settled on several smaller SUVs and of course the Prius. All offered high mileage and adequate space for storage. The only issue was, would my 6'3" husband fit in the smaller options, and timing... I was pushed into buying my last car and wanted to take my time on this one.

Sales person #1 was perfect. Low key, talked to both of us did some fact finding to learn where we were in the process and what functions I wanted. When he learned that I was the primary driver, he focused in on what differences I liked and didn't like. I felt "part" of the transaction, not some object off to the side.

Sales person #1 went inside to get us more material. That's when sales person #2 went for the wallet. He cornered us wandering around and immediately talked to my husband, pointed out the shiny things on the wheels and was ready to cut a deal on the spot. My husband informed him that he was "just bling" and wasn't the buyer. To which he then turned his hard close sales techniques on me. No doubt they worked for him in the past, but not this time - or ever - and that's the point.

When I'm ready, sales person #1 will get my business. I will search him out and let him find the perfect fit. He took the time to learn my needs and help me weigh the pros and cons, but most of all, he was respectful of my age group and my gender. That made a difference to me, and eventually it'll make a difference in his commission check.

Facts:
• Women now buy 51% of all cars1

Women purchase 48% of all used vehicles2
Females influence the purchase more than 80% of cars3
39% of women would rather deal with women in the car showroom4
Women make up 65% of the customer base for service centers and 85% are not satisfied with the service and repairs they receive5

Resources:

Women in Automotive Journalism - www.WomenOf.com

Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association - www.aftermarket.org

National Automobile Dealers Association - www.nada.org

Sources:
1,2,3,5 - CNW Research
3 - Microsoft MSN CarPoint study


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