DONNA HARRIS

People make menu sales click

Donna Harris covers automotive retailing for Automotive News

People do their banking online. Some may even arrange auto financing online. But so far vendors and dealers alike say aftermarket service plans and other products don't sell well through the Internet channel.

Increasing numbers of dealers are promoting F&I products on their Web sites. Some are using video testimonials. That's all well and good.

But from what I'm hearing, the most interactive Web site doesn't sell product.

Customers need to be walked through the value of purchasing aftermarket products. They need a skilled finance professional guiding them through a menu.

Even if customers are presented with a menu online, they're likely to just click on past it, top vendors tell me

Dealers still need bricks and mortar — or maybe I should say flesh and blood? — to sell a menu of F&I products.

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