intice Tip of the Week:  Get More Trade-In Appraisal Appointments Now!

by David Farmer on May 25, 2017

As a car dealership, how can I get more trade-in appraisal appointments?


Trade Appraisal Appointment is a great way for dealers to increase showroom traffic.  When designing your dealership's process for Trade Appraisals here are some things to keep in mind.

1.) Make the appraisal process easy for the customer.

2.) Do the appraisal early in the sales process.

3.) Use an appraisal tool on your website that is fast and easy.

4.) Allow the customer to schedule an appointment for Trade Appraisal online.

5.) Provide the customer an INCENTIVE for visiting the dealership for an appraisal.

*Watch this video to learn more about the intice® Trade tool that accomplishes all of these goals [click for video]


Additional tips on making a customer centric trade appraisal in your dealership:


The 4 Goals of an Appraisal Every Salesman Should Know

In a traditional sales process, the appraisal is done after the selection/demonstration and prior to the write up. In our sales process we want to do the appraisal prior to the selection.

Turn the Buyer into a Seller

By having the customer “sell” us their vehicle, their mood and personality will change. The customer will be excited to tell us about their vehicle and, they will be telling us all of the good points about it. Of course they will want us to pay top dollar for it, and they will act as such. Don’t de-value the vehicle, they know that the car has a dent on the rear and the tires need to be replaced… and after we walk around with them – they will know that we know!! By pointing out the flaws in their vehicle, it will only reduce the amount of excitement they have. Let them be emotional – people buy vehicles based on emotion!

The Trade holds Clues

When we do our walk around with the customer we will find out what is important to the buyer. You will notice that they have a bunch of CD’s, or that they have a car seat in the back, you may notice that they have Chrome Rims and low profile tires… all of these things will tell you something about the buyer.

Speed up the process

When you do the Appraisal prior to Selection, the Appraisal can be taking place while you and your customer are going through Selection. The appraiser will be working on placing a value on the vehicle while you are with your customer and the Appraisal will be complete by the time you are done with your demonstration. In a traditional sales process the customer will be left alone while you get the trade appraised. This results in a diminished return on the time and energy you spent getting them excited about the purchase of their vehicle.

Ensure a Write-Up

Every time you get the Appraisal done prior to the Selection you are guaranteeing yourself a write-up with the buyer.

The customer will be eager to find out the value of his car, as that is the only number in the transaction that is “personal”. The manager who takes the Appraisal will explain to the customer that we will share with them estimates on down payments, monthly payments and figures on their car. They will be setting the path for success.


Things NOT to do while doing an Appraisal

Don’t De-Value the vehicle in the customer’s mind

Don’t wait until after the selection/demonstration

Don’t Leave the Buyer while during the Appraisal

Things to DO during the Appraisal

Ask the Buyer about his/her car, allow them to be excited

Walk around the vehicle with the Buyer

Drive the vehicle off in the Appraisal Area with the buyer

Drop the keys to the Manager and introduce to the Buyer


Key Guest Benefits of an Early Appraisal

Saves Time

While you are selecting a vehicle with your customer, the appraiser will be conducting the professional appraisal on the vehicle and will shorten the customer’s time in the dealership.

Involvement in Appraisal

Research shows that customers do not like the traditional appraisal process. They feel that they are not involved with the appraisal process and do not receive a logical explanation of how the appraised value is determined. In order to avoid these pitfalls, our Sales Process will involve the customer in the determination of the value of their vehicle.


There have been many studies into the purchase experience in car dealerships. And there is one thing that will almost always top the list of negative experiences. That is: “It just took way too long to buy a car.” One way to add value to our Sales Process is to reduce the amount of time that the buyer has to spend in the dealership. One of the ways we do that is to have their vehicle appraised at the same time that they is selecting a vehicle. We call this the Early Appraisal.

One of the other things that buyers wish was different in the purchase experience is being involved in determining the value of their trade vehicle. By utilizing the Early Appraisal, building a profile around the buyer’s present vehicle and introducing the buyer to the manager, the buyer will be involved with the appraisal process. We will have more credibility in the eyes of the buyer and will move closer to a purchase decision.

One myth in the car business is that you want to do a “silent” walk-around of their vehicle and silently point out flaws in their vehicle. The thought is that this will devalue the vehicle in the buyer’s mind. The problem with that practice is that, in addition to de-valuing the vehicle, it also deflates the buyer’s attitude. With any purchase, the decision is made based on emotions and justified logically. So we need to ensure that we have processes built-in to the sales experience that will not contaminate the buyer’s attitude and emotional state. The most valuable asset you have is your attitude, and the most valued item that you can build in your buyer is their attitude! That must be protected at all times.

Rather than walking around and silently pointing out flaws, take the time to gather all the pertinent information about the vehicle and ask them about the vehicle. Items such as Additional Equipment added to enhance the vehicle’s value, Warranties that may still apply, any recent repairs that have been made to the vehicle. Doing this will turn the buyer into a seller. Turning the buyer into a seller will elevate their attitude and get their emotions involved. When a person has an attitude of SELLING he or she will be more involved and will be more eager to share information. Make sure that you are using your positive language… words like Great, Super, Excellent! Compliment them on their car by saying things like “Nice Car” and “I can tell you really have taken nice care of your car” – “I know my Used Car manager will love this car.” This will only get you closer to a car deal… we will justify the appraised value during the negotiations… no reason to bring up money at this point!





Topics: Automotive Digital Insights

David Farmer

Written by David Farmer

David Farmer is the Founder and CEO of intice, Inc., a technology company in the automotive digital marketing industry. An entrepreneur and pioneer at heart, David has a passion for the automotive industry, technology and marketing and has more than 20 years direct experience in automotive retail.