Many private academies and sales and consulting firms specialize in auto sales training and education. These firms often present their classes at the dealership, although an occasional program is offered online. While it is rare, community colleges sometimes offer auto sales training programs.
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Auto Sales Training
There are no educational prerequisites for auto sales training programs, yet many employers prefer a high school diploma or its equivalent, at the very least. These programs are often conducted in the form of workshops that take one or two days to complete. Most emphasize getting and retaining customers as well as improving efficiency. These training programs often combine role-playing with academic work to prepare students to interact with customers. Courses are very different from college courses and might include topics such as:
- Overview of the automobile market
- Basic themes for selling cars
- Self-esteem and selling yourself
- How to get, keep, and build rapport with customers
- Conducting trade evaluations
- Paperwork and auto delivery
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) estimates that employment opportunities for retail sales workers, including those who sell automobiles, will increase by 7% from 2014-2024. In May 2015, the BLS reported that retail salespeople working for automobile dealers made average annual salaries of $45,280; this placed them as the third-highest paid workers in the retail sales field.
Continuing Education Information
Auto sales training is not just about 'how to,' but also about motivation. A dealership will often have a plan for motivating their employees. However, individuals may also seek out both informational and motivational continuing education on their own. Even though most of the auto sales training available through private agencies is done only through the dealership, there are CD programs the individual can purchase. There are also a few online programs.
In addition, there are motivational CDs and online help for salespeople that are not geared specifically toward auto sales, but that have principles that can easily be adapted. There are also many continuing education classes in generic selling that have adaptable information and are often available through community colleges. Some courses offer sales training certificates. Auto salespersons who want to get into supervisory roles or own their own business might consider getting an associate's or bachelor's degree in management.
College training for auto sales representatives is rare. Most auto sales training is done through one- to two-day workshops that take place on the job.