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View Full Version : why all the complaining about dealers


kkat
05-20-2005, 10:20 AM
First off let me say that Im a dealer, I have been on this site for a while and have been reading the threads with interest, I have noticed that a high percentage of lco,s really diss the dealers, Im not talking about bad experience's with repair work or long turn around times, I can understand your anger when it comes to bad repairs, turn around times etc, and its understandable,What I want to know is why you guys go in into a dealers shop/store to purchase whatever it is, be it a new Z turn or WB or blades or ??? and all you guys do is try to get the price down and if you dont, then all of a sudden the dealer is no good, I read these threads all the time and you guys are always writing about how this custermer wants this and this done for nothing or thrown in for the price you already gave them and 95% of you guys wont do it and call the custermer a cheap so and so and what do they think I work for nothing etc,etc,etc and so on and so on, Whats up guys? you want a dealer to give you deals your not willing to give your own custermers, How come?

Oldtimer
05-22-2005, 12:04 AM
Amen!

Ever notice how the people who have problems with dealers are usually solo operators who brag about shopping. The shoppers will never be considered to be "A" customers. The dealers don't have time to give the max to a customer who is just a price buyer for 1 piece of equipment and then shops everywhere else for expendables.

There are posters who think a dealer should let them take a demo for a couple of days don't go out and mow a property for free just to see if the customer wants to hire them. If anyone thinks they can take a 10K mower from our store for a couple of days had better think again. We have a great customer base of professional cutters who are loyal to us and they receive the best service we can possibly deliver.

Oldtimer
www.sevillelawn.com

Tider6972
05-22-2005, 02:44 AM
Do you have a demo policy, Oldtimer? Or do your customers buy those "$10,000" mowers without knowing how they cut, drive and perform? What's fair to both?

Oldtimer
05-22-2005, 01:32 PM
TIDER6972,

My approach to selling mowers may be costing sales so how about some info. I am not trying to make jokes, rather, I am asking for feedback about what LCOs expect from dealers. Please answer the following questions as fairly and honestly as possible.

How do you decide which mower to buy and how many commercial mowers have you purchased?

How many different dealers do you currently shop at?

What do you think a mower demo should consist of?

Are you willing to pay to demo a mower? This would consist of blades, fuel and returning the mower completely cleaned and serviced.

Should a dealer allow you to demo several different mowers for more than one day at a time at no charge and with no commitment from you?

If a dealer allowed you to demo a mower what would you be looking for?

Do you pay cash or finance your mowers? By cash, I mean off the hip, not borrowed from a bank or credit union.

Have you ever relied on a dealer to arrange a purchase or lease financial package?

If you financed, what is the maximum amount of interest you would pay to purchase or lease a mower? The definition of a lease is never planning to own the equipment and it is leased with a residual value, usually 10 - 20%.

Would you mow my yard for free to let me see if I like your work?

Oldtimer
www.sevillelawn.com

stumper1620
05-22-2005, 04:39 PM
TIDER6972,

My approach to selling mowers may be costing sales so how about some info. I am not trying to make jokes, rather, I am asking for feedback about what LCOs expect from dealers. Please answer the following questions as fairly and honestly as possible.

How do you decide which mower to buy and how many commercial mowers have you purchased?
dealer's attitude toward me, is my 10k purchase worth your time? I may be solo but I still want up to date equipment.

How many different dealers do you currently shop at?
2 only because my primary equip. dealer does not have all the accessories I want.

What do you think a mower demo should consist of?
I would like to try it on the 1 lawn that is driving the purchase.


Are you willing to pay to demo a mower? This would consist of blades, fuel and returning the mower completely cleaned and serviced.
not if I buy one. to use and decline purchase maybe a deposit, To cover possible blade damage or such other as may be caused by my use.
Should a dealer allow you to demo several different mowers for more than one day at a time at no charge and with no commitment from you?
I would not expect that, but I'm a small timer.
If a dealer allowed you to demo a mower what would you be looking for?
all around performance, stripe, cut, performance & ride quality& overall perfomance.

Do you pay cash or finance your mowers? By cash, I mean off the hip, not borrowed from a bank or credit union.
finance. even if cash is available

Have you ever relied on a dealer to arrange a purchase or lease financial package?
yes, arranged thru JD credit, future purchases made easy.

If you financed, what is the maximum amount of interest you would pay to purchase or lease a mower? The definition of a lease is never planning to own the equipment and it is leased with a residual value, usually 10 - 20%.
never lease, lowest possible charges
Would you mow my yard for free to let me see if I like your work?
no, are you going to give me 10K if you do??

Oldtimer
www.sevillelawn.com
sorry I haven't figured out the line by line reply yet so its all in your quote area.
hope this helps in your researching, I buy from the small dealer always, negotiating price is not something I make a habit of, I like my sales people & the service is the best, I really hate to say this but, I hope they don't grow too much, I like dealing with them at the current size of the dealership, I think as they grow they would be better off with several smaller operations rather than 1 large op. just seems to give more of a personal level to all deals.
do I pass ?

PROCUT1
05-23-2005, 08:41 AM
I buy the equipment from the local dealer but as far as parts and maintenance supplies I try to avoid the dealer whenever possible..

Pricing difference between the dealer and a wholesaler is HUGE
DOUBLE or MORE in many cases

Its nice to give the dealer some business and easy if you only have a couple of pieces of equipment but when you have to replace 20 oil filters every week or 60 blades a month then the difference adds up

Filter at dealer 8.50
"" " wholesaler 2.50 bought by case

Blade at dealer 14.00
wholesaler 7.25

Dealers should think about having different price levels for different clients...
I dont like that I pay the same as a homeowner for a part. Im spending tens of thousands per year and theyre spending peanuts..

Auto parts stores do it...... A garage pays less for a part than Mr. Homeowner

Magna-Matic
05-23-2005, 10:28 AM
Hello All,

I'm not sure on how to respond, but it seems like this thread may be in the wrong place. I read through the posts, and could not find a question directed at MAGNA-MATIC.

Let me know if i missed it, or if you have any other questions.

Thank you,

Tider6972
05-23-2005, 12:12 PM
Thanks for the responce, Oldtimer. As you know, I respect your expertise and opinions! I have been in your dealership, and you have a very impressive operation.

In the same spirit as you posed the questions, to better dealer/lco relations, please allow me to offer my input:

...."How do you decide which mower to buy and how many commercial mowers have you purchased?"
...I first research specs, others' opinions, <i>service and parts departments and personnel </I>, then I demo on a property with which I am familiar. I have owned an Exmark Lazer 52", 27 Kohler, currently own a Hustler SuperZ 28EFI 60", a Gravely PM34Z, and four Toro Proline 21s. The Prolines are the only mowers I have bought without a dealer demo, but truth is I have owned them for ~25 years for personal use!


...How many different dealers do you currently shop at? "
....Two dealerships, one sells Gravely, Exmark (get Toro items here), JD, and one for Hustler and Redmax. I buy OEM blades and parts, except for filters, I use Wix/NAPA, though I do use <i>some</i> OEM filters from the dealers.

...What do you think a mower demo should consist of?"
....Mowing a property with which I am familiar. I have one which is just over an acre, with Zoysia in front, St. Augustine close to the house in the back, followed by Bermuda Grass, then on a berm with about a 20 degree slope some random Bahai and Dallis grass; the perfect demo prop !


..."Are you willing to pay to demo a mower? This would consist of blades, fuel and returning the mower completely cleaned and serviced."
...Having been an auto dealer, and (for a short nightmare) a boat dealer, I consider demos a sales expense, and should be built in the selling price of the equipment. Don't mowers manufacturers have demo incentives/programs?

..."Should a dealer allow you to demo several different mowers for more than one day at a time at no charge and with no commitment from you?"
....No. I have had offers of that nature, however.
My Hustler dealer left a mower with me overnight more as a convience to him, I cut only one property with it even though he didn't mind how much I used it.
My Gravely (and Exmark) dealer brought a LazerZ 27/60 and a Gravely PM260Z with him when I was demoing the PM34Z, to my surprise.

..."Do you pay cash or finance your mowers? By cash, I mean off the hip, not borrowed from a bank or credit union."
...I've done both. I am aware that dealers who offer financing through Sheffield, for example, incur costs, and understand that must be built in their price for the equipment.

..."Have you ever relied on a dealer to arrange a purchase or lease financial package?

If you financed, what is the maximum amount of interest you would pay to purchase or lease a mower? The definition of a lease is never planning to own the equipment and it is leased with a residual value, usually 10 - 20%"
...Yes, I took advantage of a "O%" interest loan, but haven't leased any equipment. I understand this impacts a dealer's sales and administrative costs, a part of any business' overhead which must be recovered.


..."Would you mow my yard for free to let me see if I like your work?"
...I never have, but under the right circumstances, I might!
As you know, that is really an apples to oranges comparison, though. Selling equipment, cars, boats, or the like means you'll have sales costs, such as demonstrations.

Thanks, and I hope this formatting works!

Grassmechanic
05-23-2005, 12:23 PM
Back in the day, I was responsible for purchasing $50k -$100k in mowing and related equipment each year. If I wasn't familiar with the brand or equipment, it would never be considered without a demo. The dealers that we dealt with were very willing to allow equipment to be demoed i.e. free drop off/pickup, let us keep for a few days at a time, etc. The other dealers? Well, we didn't so much as buy a blade from them....

Tider6972
05-23-2005, 12:41 PM
Seems I missed this question:

..."If a dealer allowed you to demo a mower what would you be looking for?"

...Quality of cut on the types of grasses I mow, mulching only. General characteristics of the mower: handling, ride, ease of adjustments, ease of maintenanc, "weak" points, strengths, hill holding ability, manueverability, response on different terrain. There have been on every demo I've taken, surprises! There is NO perfect mower, there are only compromises. Therefore, one must seek the mower with the fewest "weaknesses" and most "strengths", <i> in your environment and under <b>your</b> conditions</i> !!

Oldtimer
05-25-2005, 08:07 PM
Just about everyone who posts on this site could learn a lot just listening to Tider6972. He has the right approach to evaluating and purchasing equipment and expendables.

If all LCOs understood their business as well as Tider6972 they would have better relationships with their dealers and probably make a lot more money. Tider6972 understands that his dealers are his partners and works with them.

Oldtimer

dvmcmrhp52
05-25-2005, 08:49 PM
Hello All,

I'm not sure on how to respond, but it seems like this thread may be in the wrong place. I read through the posts, and could not find a question directed at MAGNA-MATIC.

Let me know if i missed it, or if you have any other questions.

Thank you,



No, you didn't miss anything..............lol.

dvmcmrhp52
05-25-2005, 09:20 PM
TIDER6972,

My approach to selling mowers may be costing sales so how about some info. I am not trying to make jokes, rather, I am asking for feedback about what LCOs expect from dealers. Please answer the following questions as fairly and honestly as possible.

How do you decide which mower to buy and how many commercial mowers have you purchased?

1)The decision is based on Quality of cut, "available" or "useful" horsepower, general quality of build and engineering, standard equipment versus optional, operator comfort,ease of maintenance, to name a few.number of mowers? enough. (really not being a smartazz, just don't give that info out.)

How many different dealers do you currently shop at?

2) only one dealer, although three are in the area.

What do you think a mower demo should consist of?

3) It depends, weve done three demos total in the past three years,(two being last year) first demo was taken out from the dealer by us and returned the same day (same dealer we currently work with) The second demo was the same, (different dealer, different manufacturer) the third and best was the latest where the distributor brought the machine to the site along with a dealer rep (knowledgable in the industry, not just a salesman) we ran the machine on the aprox 1 acre lot, and questioned them afterwards. No real selling, no hard sales tactics, just good honest info for us to make a decision with.

Are you willing to pay to demo a mower? This would consist of blades, fuel and returning the mower completely cleaned and serviced.

4) No I am not willing to pay for a demo.

Should a dealer allow you to demo several different mowers for more than one day at a time at no charge and with no commitment from you?

5)No I don't believe that's required or reasonable.

If a dealer allowed you to demo a mower what would you be looking for?

6) Again, knowledgeable people that know the needs of the industry without pressure sales tactics. If I'm looking for a demo, my choices have already been narrowed down and the decision is based on the merits of the machine and it's support, although obviously some will just be kicking the tires.

Do you pay cash or finance your mowers? By cash, I mean off the hip, not borrowed from a bank or credit union.

7) We've done both.

Have you ever relied on a dealer to arrange a purchase or lease financial package?

8) yes.

If you financed, what is the maximum amount of interest you would pay to purchase or lease a mower? The definition of a lease is never planning to own the equipment and it is leased with a residual value, usually 10 - 20%.

9) Rates vary substantially by the market, but give me an interest free year to pay off and I'm happy.....LOL.

Would you mow my yard for free to let me see if I like your work?

10) No. Cutting your lawn is not a $10,000 investment.

Oldtimer
www.sevillelawn.com





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