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Tire Kickers And Their Negative Implication In Sales

Tire Kickers And Their Negative Implication In Sales

September 2, 2021

The tire kicker is a term that hardly anyone will ever try to associate with it in the world of sales. A tire-kicker is the worst nightmare of a salesperson. They will continue the talks and discuss the possibilities of buying from you but will never actually get to a point where the deal can be closed. Tire kickers can be a huge liability for your time and energy and can slow down your pace with their unfruitful approach towards closing the deal. 

Origin of The Term

The origin of the term is the car sales industry. A car salesperson usually ends up spending a lot of their valuable work hours dealing with people who come in as prospective buyers, take test drives, “Kicks the tire” and then don’t actually buy anything. It has been a part and parcel of car sales and salespeople expect handling tire kickers as a part of their jobs. But it becomes a huge time sucker and can be mentally draining as they will instill you with false hope of purchase and then proceed to leave. 

A Deceitful Distraction For Sales Employees

Tire kickers are usually very skilled at the art of deceiving a person into thinking that they are indeed very invested in the idea of buying. They will ask a ton of questions and they will look to argue with you as well if it suits the flow of the conversation. It is important for a salesperson to know when to further engage in negotiation and when to give up as it will save them from the verbal traps of tire kickers.

Tell-Tale Signs If A Person Is A Tire Kicker

Now moving on from a discussion of what a tire kicker is or what they may do, let’s take a closer look at what are the telltale signs that can help salespeople identify a tire kicker. Tire kickers are generally broke. It is not very difficult for salespeople to determine if a person is broke or not as there is a lot of verbal communication that is going on during a sales deal. When the person is looking to delay the deal towards a day when his monthly salary might arrive, it can be assumed as a red signal. This may indicate they are living on a month-to-month basis with a limited amount of savings. Also, when a person comes as a representative of a company and is supposed to make the deal on their behalf, it is highly likely that they will rarely end up pushing the deal further.  One of the smartest ways to deal with this is to ask about their budget. Doing so provides an understanding of what they might actually be looking for apart from what they say. It becomes very easy to spot a tire kicker in these situations as they often end up mixing up their budget and the car they say they are looking for. Once you can clearly spot an imbalance between the both, you can move on to stop the negotiation gradually from thereon. 

Unending Conversations

Another annoying habit that tire kickers indulge in is the habit of stalling as much as they can. They will take a thorough look at the product and will throw every possible question they can in your direction about the tiniest of details. On top of that, they will also ask questions about you, your personal life, and everything that the imagination can manifest. It becomes easy to spot these tire kickers as the salesperson will soon start to notice the constant to and fro of questions and answers without any progress in the deal. The only way to handle this kind of situation is to stay firmly grounded on the thing that matters and don’t let yourself or your client get carried away with talking about things that will do nothing to progress the deal. You should actively try to deflect any question that is not related to the sale of your product and try to bring the customer’s attention to their decision of making a purchase. 

Uninterested In Any Kind Of Progress

One thing that sales teach people is that people who are genuinely trying to indulge in a deal that requires buying or selling, they will be serious about it and get to the point as soon as they can. Tire kickers tend to have a lot of time on their hands and they show complete disregard for someone who may have targets to fulfill and deadlines to meet. Salespeople may lose a huge chunk of their work hours to these time-sucking vampires which may prevent them from meeting their job expectations. In order to get themselves out of the traps of time-consuming tire kickers, the salesperson should analyze the person for his preparedness for buying. They should be asked questions about their preferences as well as other products they have considered for buying. Listening to their responses will help you know whether the person is invested in the idea of buying or not. They should be aware of some options which an interested buyer generally researches before making up their mind to proceed with negotiating. If they seem to be clueless then it’s a telltale sign that they might be tire kickers. 

Dealing With Tire Kicker As A New Sales Employee

Tire kickers are in general very easy to spot sometimes as the way they initiate and progress with the deal gives away a lot of signs that indicate towards someone who does not fit your buyer profile. Their answers to standard template questions are a great place to look at as tire kickers generally do not value such paperwork and tend to write rubbish. Social media can also be of help as profiles that are non-existent or details about the person’s social life may make it easy to determine whom we are dealing with. But the job of identifying and getting rid of them is still a very troublesome part of a salesperson’s duties. However, with a little experience on the field, salespeople can easily develop a knack for identifying as well as getting rid of tire kickers whenever one is encountered. 

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