January is not the time for your dealership to take a break

The holidays have arrived.

The month, quarter and year are nearly over. Then you can take a break, right?

Well, not unless you want your competitors to gain an edge going into tax season. Tax season, you reply, that’s still a couple months away.

But, no, tax season starts right … about … now.


121818 IL Now is not the time for your dealership to take a break


Despite the anxiety most people feel about tax season, it’s also a good time to sell cars. There is no other time of the year many shoppers have an extra $3,000 or so to put down on a new or used vehicle.

The reality is that many consumers will be shopping in anticipation of refunds.

That typically makes March one of the top three sales months. In fact, March is the top month of 2018, pending results for December, with nearly 1.7 million units sold. Almost 9 percent of 2017 sales occurred in March, the month before tax season ends!

That also means January and February are two of the most important months of the year, because that’s when dealerships will need to prepare for the tax rush coming our way.

To make the most of tax season, as we suggested in our series, The Road Ahead, you are going to need an auto lender such as Santander Consumer USA that is:

  • Committed to helping your dealership succeed this tax season and beyond.
  • Confident that our updated program will enable you to make more money.
  • Compelled to do what is best for our dealer-partners’ businesses.
  • Commended by dealerships who already work with us – some of them for many years.

Being commended by dealerships that work with us is the best measure of our success.

Jim Lopez, general manager of Del Toyota in Thorndale, PA, which sells about 3,100 vehicles a year, gave four reasons the dealership has been working with SC for more than 10 years:

  • Fast response time on applications. Knowing we have a quick approval helps us make deals with our customers faster, and we don’t have to keep them waiting.
  • The Dealer Extranet – We are big fans of the rehash tool. It gives us flexibility to rehash multiple vehicles in minutes without having to pick up the phone.
  • Funding experience. We have had great experiences with the funding department. It is fast and painless, which keeps us wanting to work with Santander.
  • Our relationship with our Santander rep adds the perfect personal touch. In a time where instantaneous accessibility is vital, she is always a phone call away.

And then there’s Darryl Morgan, general sales manager at The Sharpest Rides, a dealership in Englewood, CO, which sells 6,000 units annually as one of the largest independents in the country.

“I love Santander for a couple simple reasons,” said Morgan. “One, they are one of my only lenders that understands what we need from them – approvals. They make this happen more than others on the largest set of customers … Secondly, they’re a value bank, meaning they bring value to the relationship. My [Dealer Relationship Manager] is a partner at our dealership.”

Chances are you won’t have to go looking for your DRM – he or she probably will find you. But if you don’t hear from us soon, you can contact SC online for quick attention.

The coming months may be taxing – and what a great way to start 2019.

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