The Secret Life of a “Car Salesman”


When you think car salesman you think….what?
My friend Joey did some research on the subject. Here’ s what he found:

“The average car buyer believes their salesperson is making thousands on a new car sale when in reality they are only making $100-$200. The thousands thought being paid out puts the consumer in the mind set that since their making all this money off of them, plus any referrals the customer gives the salesperson, then over the complete top VIP treatment is expected, ie free service, free oil changes, free after market. Or a negative review could be blasted against the salesperson let alone undesired CSI survey back to the OEM. And about the referral, if a customer thinks the new car salesperson made $2000-$3000 of their sale plus 2000/3000 off the 3 other people they referred then you’ve got a customer who thinks $8000-$12000 of that salespersons yearly income came from them. — true statements!” – Joey Little

Marketwatch reported in July a study which surveyed more than 3,000 people:

consumers think car dealers are raking in the dough — at their expense. The average car buyer believes that car dealers make about a 20% profit on the sale of a $30,000 car, but believe that a 10% to 12% profit is actually fair. But the reality of the situation is different. The average pretax profit margins for car dealerships was just 2.2% last year, down from 2.3% a year prior, according to the National Automobile Dealers Association 2013 report — and this year, that pretax profit margin is expected to remain at just 2.2%. And the net profit that dealers earned last year from each new vehicle was just $69 for new cars and $254 per used vehicle.

I googled “car salesman” the above photo represents most of the first two rows in images. That’s sad. I have heard some horror stories, don’t get me wrong, but it’s sad. I’m not going to lie I did have a little fear in me that I would find myself in a bad element when I took this job in the automotive industry. Good for me I have no problem giving anything a try & being ok with walking away if I don’t feel right about being there. I was worried, ok. I admit it. I went looking for a new job for one reason…the economy stole my old one. I met Renee via email. I answered an ad saying she was looking for someone to do social media. It just so happened I did the bulk of the social media work at the recording studio where I worked & I sent Renee the links. Long story short, I interviewed, talked to my dad (the former mechanic who assured me my negative perception was a bloated misperception), took the job, started working and within a few weeks I fell in love with this HRBG family. I love these people! They are great people who want to help the people of the River Valley. We sale new & used cars, service them, fix em when you have a wreck, we support the community, and (Scott’s motto) we do the right thing. My HRBG family is honest, they have integrity, they want every customer to be happy, they want to help you not “sell” you, they are awesome, some of them are hilarious, some of them are serious, some of them don’t drink a drop & some of them can drink you under the table. They do the “Kentucky fade” (I had to learn this one). They are fantasy football nerds, tennis players, hunters, lake bums, bicyclers, bunco players & book lovers (I’m in the book lovers group 🙂 ). They are competitive, they are incredibly hard working, they are parents & grandparents. They go to ballets, and choir concerts & basketball games & parent teacher conferences. They have spouses who miss them a lot because many of them work 8a-8p just to make sure every customer has the most convenient buying experience. They give a lot & I’m very impressed with them every day. I feel awful I ever believed (even a little) the myth, the nasty rumor about the “car salesman”. (We have sales consultants since we aren’t limited to sales staff of the male gender 😉 ) I get passionate about this subject because every day this staff goes above & beyond to do the right thing & they make me proud to be part of such an awesome staff.  I would say the story of the awesomeness that is this group of “car salesmen” is the reality behind the myth..this is the secret life of a car salesman.

car salesman

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7 thoughts on “The Secret Life of a “Car Salesman”

  1. I’ve recently been employed as a salesperson at a car company dealership, and I’ve been warned that if I don’t sell any cars, I will not receive any car salesman commission . Do salespeople get paid hourly and then commission, or might I be working days and getting nothing in return?

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