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The value of an appointment

Do you know the true value of an appointment? What are you doing to ensure you’re setting quality appointments? Without an in-depth business development plan, you’re wasting time and money and your customers are seeking out more personalized showroom experiences elsewhere.

Luckily, we’ve made the mistakes for you, and have come up with a solution to maximize show rates, close rates, and customer satisfaction. After all, the purpose of a BDC is to create quality showroom traffic through daily appointment-setting practices. 

An appointment-based business is the result of process. A process that helps associates set firm appointments that show. 

Sales appointments are the highest quality leads. Sales managers should focus on appointments set by their salespeople and BDC team. Daily targets for appointments are a non-negotiable topic. It is, or at least should be, part of the salesperson and BDC’s job description and compensation plan. 

Don’t put all your focus on kept appointments though. Each step of the process requires management oversite and adherence to the process. 

Each step of the process has a definite value. In this example, the act of setting an appointment has a value of $1260. 

Average Gross Show APT Close Rate 60% Set APT show rate 70% 
$3000 $1800 $1260 

There are a few common practices that nearly everyone does to set appointments, such as selecting a specific day and time or sending appointment confirmation emails. We have a few additional tips you may not be implementing in your store, which could lead to a higher close rate and increase customer satisfaction.

The Process

  • Schedule apt for a specific date and time. Explain preparation and reception process.
  • Schedule or confirm appointments within 24 hours of the appointment time for an 80% show rate or higher.
  • Prepare. Have the car ready for a test drive. Start a deal jacket with the customers name on it and as much paperwork as possible.
  • Display your appointments in the showroom. Make your customers feel special! 
  • When possible, a manager should be a part of the reception process. 
  • Update your CRM when appointments arrive. Track your show and close rate and follow up with missed appointments. 

Best Practices

Scheduling and Confirmation:
  • Set appointments at east west times. i.e., :15 and :45 minutes past the hour. 
  • Send a confirmation email immediately with a confirmation number, date and time, and the person they should ask for when they arrive. 
  • Confirm appointment by phone or text within 24 hours of the scheduled time. 
    • Gather as much information as possible. Trade-in details, payoff, verify insurance and all customer contact info inputted to CRM.  
    • Make sure the vehicle is clean, and ready for a test drive. 
    • Prepare a delivery jacket with the customer’s name on it. 
    • A Manager should be a part of the reception process. 
    • Display your appointments on a welcome screen. 
    • Assume the close! 


If you find yourself falling short of your goals, dive deep into your appointment process and identify what isn’t working and what is. Setting an appointment is much more than just reserving a day and time for a test drive, each step has tremendous value and payoff when done correctly. We tend to pay more attention to the process when we understand the complexity and importance of every single step. 



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