Reading body language: Car salespeople almost invoke the same amount of fear into people as IRS agents. Being able to read the body language or non-verbal communication of car salesmen may just take away some of the fear before you walk on the lot.
Before you read the body language of a car salesman it is important to know what your body language is doing or what your communication is doing nonverbally. If you are uncertain of anything your nonverbal communication will show this.
Now there are times to be scared but dealing with salespeople is just like dealing with anyone else. Time will be what is on your side or what is against you. Your body language will show hungry or tired so the best game plan of going into a dealership means that you have enough sleep. When you get hungry your defenses go down and you will make decisions that you may not have wanted to previously. You will have issues of buying if you are tired.
For you have the best chances of getting what you want it is a good idea to eat before you go to a car lot and to also bring some food and drinks with you. Now besides getting your loan from a bank or credit union before you show up on the car lot food, drinks and a calculator are the best things to have in your arsenal.
On your end while buying a car your body language can give up your position or your beliefs. The best thing for you to remember on your side is to not give up too much reaction or too much emotion. Be careful to not show:
- · Fear
- · Anger
- · Frustration
- · Excitement at some stages
Now as you enter a car lot there are things that you should know. On any lot there are behind the scene games going on and you enter the game without even knowing. As you drive up there is a “fight” between salesmen as to who is going to get to talk to you. In some instances it is up to who is selling or who is not.
As you get out of your car you may be given up on by the salesman who wanted you as a “client” previously because the way that you look or the clothes that you are wearing.
You will be approached by a rogue salesperson who may ask if they can help you. For some dealerships this may not be able to happen until you put your hands in your pockets or look tawards the front of the building. If hand in the pockets are needed of or the look to the building is required the people who are the spotters will signal the salespeople to meet with you.
Your first salesperson is there to read your body language and get some information from you to see if you are a good potential client for the sales team. If you are a difficult buyer and the salesmen is experienced he will signal the people in the tower who are watching to send over a new salesperson in a few minutes.
This signal that he uses will seem like normal body language, he may straighten his, run his hands through his hair, adjust his jacket or even actually signal with his hands in a way that you just think that he is using nonverbal communication.
The salesman is reading everything about you, he has more than likely done this before and you are not the first person that he has “sold” something to. He or she will be able to tell more about you than you think just from a few minutes, yes you are being judged and it may not be fair to you but that is how it works.
Once you decide you want to take the car for a test drive you enter into a sales funnel and everything has been engineered for you to buy something.
- · The test drive is meant for you to take ownership and get used to being behind the wheel.
- · Part of the test drive should be on the freeway to get the feel of what it is like to go to work
- · Driving on the side streets is to get the feel of what it is like to drive to the store
- · If you are married or in a relationship it is now time to switch seats and get the other person to drive.
You look at the other person and give the “nod” or “wink” and the salesperson reads your body language and know that it is time to go deeper into the funnel.
You go back to the dealership and go from a large lot to a big office and then into a smaller cubicle. There are signs everywhere that are meant to prime you with numbers to get you used to seeing dollar amounts as high or higher than monthly payments or even as much as the car. The signs around the area will have people smiling or families together once again more primes.
You then sit at a round table and you are sat together so that the salesman can watch the both of you being separated is a difficult thing to deal with because the salesman cannot see you make signals or winks. Know that in some places there may be cameras to look for your nonverbal communication and to look for your readiness to move forward.
Being brought to a smaller area is done on purpose to make you feel tighter, closer but also to control you more.
The car salesman may give off more covert signals to his helpers once again along the lines of a hand sign, moving a tie, tying a shoe or just about a million other nonverbal communications to signal where the sales call is going.
Know that the more that you are consumed with information the more difficult it may be to keep up so that small items are slipped in. Using a 4 square sales process is a way that the information difficult to keep up with.
The salesman is looking at your body language bit also listening to phrases you say like: “When we get this car home” or even “I can’t wait to take this car to….” Your words are signs that you desire ownership.
At this point whatever “deal” you came up with will fall through and the salesperson may get disappointed and show signs of stress with his body language. The salesman may rub his head, his chin or the back of his neck. He may say things like: I cant believe this has happened” or “let me go talk to my manager”. This is all done on purpose to give you and the other person with you time to talk and get your game plan together. No in some places the sales floor may have a microphone on it and what you are saying may be head, in some places you may be on video and your nonverbal communication is being watched.
The salesguy or girl will come back with a counter offer and get excited for what he or she came up with. The deal that he or she has will be slightly more than what you wanted but you will be asked to see if you can make the payment or take a car with fewer options for the same amount as the car that you were shown.
Once again your body language will be watched for your buying signs and or signals. The phone may ring with a last minute offer and the call is scripted and in some instances there may be tones in the phone that tell the salesman what type of credit you have. His body language has been scripted and he or she has been coached as to what to do exactly, it is no mistake.
From here you either make the deal or you do not. Know that you becoming tired and putting time into the situation are done on purpose because once people have invested significant time into something they typically will not walk away. Know that if you are slightly tired or hungry it is easier to get to yes and a sale.
A little of this information will go past body language but it is good to know what you will do and pay before you go to the car lot. Having your budget set and knowledge of your credit helps you more than you would know. Having financing before you go to the car lot will give you an upper hand with negotiating but remember reading body language for you and the salesperson has a great deal to do with reactions.
Know that there are many great salespeople who will do the right thing for you in most situations and just like everything else there will be those few who ruin it for the “good guys”. As a side note not all car lots are bad or use deceptive behavior but it is good to know what to look for when there are the ones who bend the rules of ethics.
As always I would like to thank you in advance for your comments and or questions about body language.
Now go implement!
Scott Sylvan Bell