Here are five things you can start doing now that will translate into immediate and substantial savings for your dealership:
1. Shop floor plan lenders. With so many national, regional and local lenders reducing their rates, chances are good that you can lower your inventory financing costs. Dealers are realizing tens of thousands of dollars in annual savings by actively managing this major expense item.
2. Eliminate paper printouts of your monthly financials. Most DMSs allow you to save ledgers and schedules in electronic formats, which are easier to work with and can be used in most communications, including with the IRS. The savings on paper, printing and equipment maintenance can be substantial.
3. Audit your advertising. Make sure you get all the rating points you’re paying for. Ask for ad flight reports to ensure minimum points were achieved, and if not, secure the discounts or credits.
4. Restructure your ad agency relationships. Many dealerships using agencies have reduced costs by replacing the traditional 15 percent agency commission with flat fees, or with payment based on performance, such as an uptick in sales, which allows advertising costs to rise and fall with sales activity.
5. Shop insurance providers. Insurance is complex, and dealers can be at a disadvantage negotiating premiums. Obtain quotes from multiple carriers and be sure you are comparing apples to apples in terms of coverage. Some carriers are hungry for business; you might find substantial premium savings at a company with a good rating. We have developed a sample insurance renewal letter that many of our dealer clients are using. You can request a copy by emailing me at RCollins@hbkcpa.com.
These are just a few quick and easy steps toward reducing your operating costs. Implement then now and start enjoying the savings.