Selling cars is the entertainment business and car dealers should do their best to bring customers joy – Car Dealer Podcast

  • This week Paul Hendy joins Batch and Rebecca on the Car Dealer Podcast
  • He talks about online car sales, profitability and what customers want when buying a car
  • Listen now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and more

Time 6:30 am, May 22, 2022

Selling cars is working in the ‘entertainment business’, says one dealer group boss who believes bringing joy to customers and a special showroom experience is still vital.

Hendy Group chief executive Paul Hendy appeared on the Car Dealer Podcast this week and shared his views on what customers really want when buying a car.

‘We provide joy. This is a wonderful experience and people are spending lots of money, so let’s make sure that’s something they come away from feeling great about,’ he said.

When asked about the future of online car sales, he said: ‘We will see a blended approach, absolutely we will. My personal opinion is that there will still be in the totality of the market, the minority will want to transact completely online.

‘At the moment, people will still want to do their researching, shopping, forensic work online but we still see a significant population of our customer base who enjoy the process of coming in, talking to the sales executive who they may already have a historic relationship with because we are part of the community.

‘They are spending significant sums of money so they want to spend time on the process and get it right. Our job is to facilitate that.’

In the wide ranging discussion with the Hendy boss, he talked about how Mokes are selling across the country, whether dealers should be selling Range Rovers for over list price and what opening the Tesla Supercharger network will mean for EV sales.

Following successful and profitable years for many dealers, Hendy commented on whether we’ll ever see results as we have recently.

‘I think we’d all like to aspire to that level of profitability. Why not? We work hard and we want a good return on our investments but will we see appreciating used car values again? Probably not,’ he said.

‘I think that was absolutely extraordinary and not something that the industry has ever seen before. I think there are certain dynamics we won’t see again and the government support was obviously extremely helpful.

‘However, I think as everyone’s business evolves, matures, as and when you buy businesses and they improve, that’s where we’re hoping to maintain our level of profitability rather than some of those very unusual but welcome tailwinds last year.’

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Rebecca Chaplin's avatar

Rebecca has been a motoring and business journalist since 2014, previously writing and presenting for titles such as the Press Association, Auto Express and Car Buyer. She has worked in many roles for Car Dealer Magazine’s publisher Blackball Media including head of editorial.

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