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View Full Version : Dealer has question for Commercial cutters about equipment purchasing..


tallimeca
07-11-2006, 08:01 PM
A couple posts I have read lately have led me to ask you guys some questions and get some feedback.

I see guys saying.....oh, that is a bad price, it's almost retail.

My question is, with the dealers you buy from , how do they advertise their equipment as far as price goes?

Most manufacturers have a Suggested List, a Promo, or "Sale Price". Then there is a "Dealer has been sitting on this product and needs to move it price"

Example. Exmark 36 Metro with 15hp Kai Kawi engine and ECS handles.

Suggested List $2899.99

Promo Price $2799.99

We put everyone the sales floor at Promo Price and hold it there. It makes it easier rather than putting it at Suggest List, and playing the used car lot game, and I end up selling it for Promo anyway.

Do you guys feel more comfortable walking in a paying a manufacturer's advertised sale price, or if you didn't know what it was, would you walk out the door feeling better that i was selling it for 2899.99, and you "got me down" to say 2829.99?

Also, how much of a markup would you think dealers make on a piece of equipment. Let's use the above example. What percentage do you think a dealer makes on that unit?

This is 100% serious question and something I often wonder.

I must admit, that with more expensive units....Lazers, Navigators, depending on the customer, I might sell the unit lower than even promo, where I might make a higher dollar profit, but not a higher percentage.

I have customers that will come in that i've never dealt with before.....and want me to sell them a 2800 dollar walk behind and throw in a 300 dollar bag for nothing.

Factoring in freight it cost the unit to get there, labor of uncrating and assembling the unit, time of selling and doing paperwork if financing, the 1-2 percent charge if using a credit card or finance program ( $50 on an average walk behind sale) and instructing customer.....this unit just cost me money to sell.

In comparison, it's like you guys charging a customer $60 dollars, to go pick up 2 yards of Mulch that cost you 26 dollars a yard, delivering it to their house, and spreading it for nothing. Yeah, you gained a customer who might sign a maintanence contract with you or call you back for other work, but it's not guaranteed and it just cost you money. I have guys bring me equipment they bought brand new somewhere else to save money, but their service dept is slower or more expensive.

Let me know how you feel.

topsites
07-11-2006, 08:13 PM
Sir, I really don't give a rat as to how much my mower costs or how much the dealer makes because that is not my problem. For this I need a dealer I can trust, because I know I don't care for it when one of my customers puts me through the 'omg it's too high' nonsense so I spare my dealer this bs as well. As for list and retail and msrp, you're better off quoting me the price straight, I'll pay whatever you say it costs, no games, just the price.

What gets me is parts... For example:
The rubber grommets on the side of the T-bar first cost over a dollar each at the dealer, and I break one of these at least weekly and it's something I am anal about and I HATE having to drive by the store every single time I need several more, I like having about 40 or 50 of them. But everytime I walk in they never understand why anybody would want more than 2-3 of these grommets and I went through this time and again until one day I had enough.
There are many more parts are not just over-priced for one, but every time I need it, they have to order it and then it's 2-3 weeks before it comes in and sometimes they get it wrong and OMG it's just a good thing I have a spare mower because one thing's for sure: I stock up on parts anymore and I can and will go through the trouble of finding suppliers that sell what I need, whether it has the Toro stamp on it, or not.

Now I order my grommets from a rubber supply company, they send me 100 at a time and the cost is 43 dollars shipping included, so 43 cents each and I have my 4+ year supply. BLAM, no more running by the dealer, and anytime one breaks, I got another one ready to replace it (and yes, I carry several in the truck).

So there you have it, you can charge what you want for the mower but the bs with the parts, I will not stand for it.

dvmcmrhp52
07-11-2006, 08:24 PM
2899 list, your willing to sell at 2799?
I'm not buying.

Dealers with larger volume get better pricing.

Freddy_Kruger
07-11-2006, 08:29 PM
Now I order my grommets from a rubber supply company, they send me 100 at a time and the cost is 43 dollars shipping included, so 43 cents each and I have my 4+ year supply. Thats exactly what I wish I do with equipment, buy directly from the manufacturer.
I'll be buying a Billy Goat lawn vac and a 9-10 HP blower this fall (maybe two of which ever one works the best) and the best I can do now is shop around by phone asking dealers for prices.
BUT! there is no dealer for Daniels Pull Back Plow so I phoned the guy up in chicago and they will ship it to me but I have to pay shipping. The only thing I ever odered online was a Dell axim v51 and it was shipped from texas but I'm not sure how much 300lbs plow will cost but I would do this with all mowers and such equipment. I hate negotiating and I'm very aware of the "OMG thats a lot of money" thing you mentioned. BUT OMG I paid a lot for my raker and powerbroom:rolleyes:
THey already hit me with the "YOUR price is..." bs as if they are already giving me a great deal but I found some other dealer over the phone selling me same thing for a couple hundred less. LIke 15% less.
Same with Kohler Oil filters. 10 bucks each, gimme a break, I get mine now from Auto Parts stores, it's a storebrand filter and it has that duragrip surface and it is red and looks very nice, $3 each. How about the stupid deck bolts that hold the deck down and are made of plastic holding a metal nut? Yeah, 2-3 dollars each and they break all the time, too... Forget it, Home Depot sells washers and wing nuts a dime a dozen.
.
Exact same thing with oil filters for me it was $19 bucks at the dealer and $4.5 at canadian tire. Plus, in the dealer you can wait for a very uncomfortable 1/2 hour till you get served.

lawnmaniac883
07-11-2006, 08:31 PM
Im with topsites to a degree. Tell me what it costs and I will pay it. There is no cense at all in driving 50+ miles to the next dealer to save 5 bucks. I will not haggle and play the used car game with my dealer. They need theirs too ya know? Everyone needs to make money and I understand that. That said, if my dealer EVER knowingly overprices a piece of equipment and sells it to me at the ridiculously high price, and I find out what it was really worth next week month or year, they will no longer be my dealer as I cannot stand being ripped off or taken.

The dealer that I buy everything from has three prices on each piece of equipment. Suggested list, Sale price, and price on account. Yes, they are big enough to where you can open an account with them and order parts without needing to prepay, they will put it on the accnt, etc for a fee which is usually a percentage of the price of whatever they are selling. Nice program they have there.

tallimeca
07-11-2006, 08:32 PM
2899 list, your willing to sell at 2799?
I'm not buying.

Dealers with larger volume get better pricing.

The example is this.

Manufactured suggested retail is 2899. Like MSRP on a vehicle. But this manufacturer is encouraging their dealers to sell it at the promo price, or sale price of 2799.

Some dealers will price the machines higher in order for their salesman to "sell" the unit, and make more of a commision off it.

Yes, larger volume dealers to recieve better pricing. This is true with just about anything.

If you are buying mulch by the yard at the local nursery for 28 dollars a yard, or you have a lot where you can buy a truckload at 20 dollars a yard.

Do you sell your mulch to your customer 8 bucks cheaper then everyone else, or put an extra 8 bucks per yard in your pocket. Depends on the company and what they want to do.

Howie's Lawn Care
07-11-2006, 08:36 PM
My dealer sells hsutler and his prices are usually around 17% less than MSRP.

tallimeca
07-11-2006, 08:37 PM
[That said, if my dealer EVER knowingly overprices a piece of equipment and sells it to me at the ridiculously high price, and I find out what it was really worth next week month or year, they will no longer be my dealer as I cannot stand being ripped off or taken.


Great Point and partly the reason I asked the question. If i sell everything the same to everyone as on the sale for......Landscaper A pays what it's priced......Landscaper B pays what it's priced. All is well.

If Landscaper A payed Sugg retail, and Landscaper B came in and paid promo.........they both start shooting the bull at lunch at the local sandwhich shop........

Landscaper A will probably no longer be my customer.

The reason why I asked about markup is because some customers come in and think the 200 dollar trimmer they just bought........I made 100 bucks on it. When in reality, i made 40 if i'm lucky.

dcondon
07-11-2006, 08:48 PM
Give me your best price and I will buy it. I WILL not talk with a salesman and go back and forth on a price for anything., Service plays one of the most important parts of the business!!!! Yes I will check a few places and request there best price also.:)

tallimeca
07-11-2006, 08:49 PM
What gets me is parts... For example:
The rubber grommets on the side of the T-bar first cost over a dollar each at the dealer, and I break one of these at least weekly and it's something I am anal about and I HATE having to drive by the store every single time I need several more, I like having about 40 or 50 of them. But everytime I walk in they never understand why anybody would want more than 2-3 of these grommets and I went through this time and again until one day I had enough.
There are many more parts are not just over-priced for one, but every time I need it, they have to order it and then it's 2-3 weeks before it comes in and sometimes they get it wrong and OMG it's just a good thing I have a spare mower because one thing's for sure: I stock up on parts anymore and I can and will go through the trouble of finding suppliers that sell what I need, whether it has the Toro stamp on it, or not.

Now I order my grommets from a rubber supply company, they send me 100 at a time and the cost is 43 dollars shipping included, so 43 cents each and I have my 4+ year supply. BLAM, no more running by the dealer, and anytime one breaks, I got another one ready to replace it (and yes, I carry several in the truck).

So there you have it, you can charge what you want for the mower but the bs with the parts, I will not stand for it.


Sorry for your troubles. My first question would be why the hell are some many of the grommets breaking? Poor design? Could you used a bronze or metal in it's place to last longer?

I can underdtand your frustration, but understand the dealers too. If you are the only guy they deal with that uses 206 of these a week, it's hard for the dealer to stock because if you sell the machine or move, or go out of buiness, they aren't moving enough of them, beside you to keep them in stock and they will be stuck with them.

If you were my customer, i would recommend you ordering them in LARGE quantities and i would have offered you a substantial discount, just so i didn't have to stock them.

I have some customers who come in and ask for large quantities of the oddest parts that I never sell and get upset that I don't have them.......but the fact remains that most dealers carry the fastest moving parts and have computer systems to track what they sell. Their isn't anything you can't get overnight if you needed it bad enough. In your case, if you knew you go through them like you do, you did the best thing, by stocking up on them.

As far as parts prices go, dealers don't make the prices on suggest retail of parts. Most dealers mark parts up above suggested retail because the margins are terrible. I sell both OEM , and aftermarket parts. I can tell you there is definetely a difference between aftermarket parts and OEM. Not all of them, but some of the filters and oil filters, there is a reason why they are so cheep. We took a 14hp Kawasaki FC420V motor, put a brand new OEM filter on it and cut half the lawn/weeds on the side of the building. Took the filter off and looked down in the throad of the intake. Took a brand new brand x filter and repeated the other half. The amount of dirt in the intake was AMAZING. I was even surprised.

Some of the aftermarket oil filters are pisser too. You go to take it off the casing and filter comes off, but the base is still screwed to the engine. Be carefull what you buy!!! I can tell you we've had real good luck with the Oregon and Stens aftermarket stuff. Some of their stuff is better then OEM.

Just like you, if the dealer doesn't make enough money to pay their bills, they won't be in buisness. Granted, some places are just robbing people blind in sure, like in any buisness. There's a local place here that is as expensive as they come. They have been in buisness for ever and are known to be rediculously overpriced, yet they have customers lined up at the door. I guess they are doing enough buisness to not notice the customers who abandoned ship. Must be nice to be making that kind of cash:dizzy:

HOOLIE
07-11-2006, 08:54 PM
I never see any prices...the dealer just starts tinkering around on his computer and after a minute says "I can get it for you for $xxxxxx"

tacoma200
07-11-2006, 09:06 PM
I call several dealers and see what the going price is and then factor dealer support into my decision. It's called competition and LCO's and dealers both have to deal with it. I have been researching for a couple of months on which mower to buy and do my homework. Alot of people especially home owners pay the price marked. My bottom line says I have to do a little extra work to find the best deals or I wont make it in the super competitive mowing business.

Freddy_Kruger
07-11-2006, 09:10 PM
Give me your best price and I will buy it. I WILL not talk with a salesman and go back and forth on a price for anything., Service plays one of the most important parts of the business!!!! Yes I will check a few places and request there best price also.:)
You summed up my thoughts better than I ever could.

Freddy_Kruger
07-11-2006, 09:13 PM
There was this one dealer I was talking to, I guess he was feeling really busy and one of the times I was there he answered the phone, "could you hold on a minute" then dropped the phone reciever about "12 onto the counter, in front of everybody. Anyway, at the time, that and his demenor to me caused me to go drop $4000 at his competition and now I'm not so hot about them either.

parkeeee
07-11-2006, 09:21 PM
I do research on equipment and will shop by phone and internet for the best deal. I will re-call local dealers to attempt to keep my purchases local.

Once the deal is done, the responsiveness of service needs is what will buy my loyalty.

mowerman90
07-11-2006, 09:38 PM
Reading some of these posts makes me really thankful for the dealer I use.
When it comes time to purchase mowers and handheld equipment we engage in a little friendly haggleing and I get what I feel is the best price I can get. Apparently my dealer is happy with the price or else he wouldn't sell it to me. When I need parts I pay whatever his price is (retail, I'm sure) but if he doesn't have it it will be there by the next day unless it's backordered. If it's a small part that's causing my machine to be out of service and is backordered he will sometimes take a part off of a machine on the showroom floor to get me back in business. If I want a part that he doesn't stock he makes note of that and will then stock that part, knowing that I, or another cutter will need it again. Of course I'm good to my dealer also. When anyone askes me where to get the best deal or the best repairs I always refer them to him. I've actually helped sell mowers when he has been busy with another customer and someone needs questions answered about a model on the showroom floor. I guess what I'm trying to say is that you have to build a relationship with your dealer in which you both have mutual respect for each other.

AAELI
07-11-2006, 09:43 PM
Good thread! Good dealers need to earn your business just like LCO's need to earn their long term contracts.

Service has always been our biggest attraction. I am higher priced for similar products over my competitors. I also deliver the best service. I cannot stock everything so I do make the effort to maintain good inventories of fast movers. At over 6000 miles from our suppliers our orders will take 3-5 days to arrive via Express mail (USPS) or 4-5 days FedEx. Priority a little longer. That will also be dependant upon the part being available from the dist/manufacturer. This has been a common factor according to other posts in this and other threads.

If you only shop price you will eventually be like the lowball LCO..broke and unsupported. I do not advocate dealers ripping off customers, even irate pita's. My grounds maintenance contracting business grew out of a commitment to service just as my equipment dealership has grown. I became frustrated with poor service so I went to Expo to locate and develop relationships with dist/manufacturers of the equipment I wanted to sell & support.

I appreciate the lco who considers our shop for his service. I hold service seminars for them to assist them in maintaining their equipment in order to keep my shop uncluttered and their operations profitable. We both win in that condition.

Steppenwolf
07-11-2006, 09:43 PM
Well the way I deal with my dealer is,last december I said I need two blah walkbehinds with blah velkies and a blah blower,bill it in december for tax purposes. It was taken care of, I got a good price,bill is always paid on time.
The people behind the counter are your best friends,they know how to get parts(sorta like Radar from MASH). The dealer can be your best friend if you treat him/her like a customer, a long term relationship is your best bet.

tacoma200
07-11-2006, 10:01 PM
I do research on equipment and will shop by phone and internet for the best deal. I will re-call local dealers to attempt to keep my purchases local.

Once the deal is done, the responsiveness of service needs is what will buy my loyalty.
That works for me!

kmann
07-11-2006, 10:50 PM
Reading some of these posts makes me really thankful for the dealer I use.
When it comes time to purchase mowers and handheld equipment we engage in a little friendly haggleing and I get what I feel is the best price I can get. Apparently my dealer is happy with the price or else he wouldn't sell it to me. When I need parts I pay whatever his price is (retail, I'm sure) but if he doesn't have it it will be there by the next day unless it's backordered. If it's a small part that's causing my machine to be out of service and is backordered he will sometimes take a part off of a machine on the showroom floor to get me back in business. If I want a part that he doesn't stock he makes note of that and will then stock that part, knowing that I, or another cutter will need it again. Of course I'm good to my dealer also. When anyone askes me where to get the best deal or the best repairs I always refer them to him. I've actually helped sell mowers when he has been busy with another customer and someone needs questions answered about a model on the showroom floor. I guess what I'm trying to say is that you have to build a relationship with your dealer in which you both have mutual respect for each other.
The beauty of Fl. if one dealer can't do it, drive 5 miles more and find the one who will.

dvmcmrhp52
07-11-2006, 11:04 PM
The example is this.

Manufactured suggested retail is 2899. Like MSRP on a vehicle. But this manufacturer is encouraging their dealers to sell it at the promo price, or sale price of 2799.

Some dealers will price the machines higher in order for their salesman to "sell" the unit, and make more of a commision off it.

Yes, larger volume dealers to recieve better pricing. This is true with just about anything.

If you are buying mulch by the yard at the local nursery for 28 dollars a yard, or you have a lot where you can buy a truckload at 20 dollars a yard.

Do you sell your mulch to your customer 8 bucks cheaper then everyone else, or put an extra 8 bucks per yard in your pocket. Depends on the company and what they want to do.




Nobody buys at MSRP when it comes to vehicles or equipment. MSRP is a pie in the sky number attached to something to try to get the consumer to believe they are getting a "deal" if they buy below that price.
Stihl equipment has a 20% dealer markup for the most part........fine, I won't quibble, however we aren't talking $10,000 either.

I really don't deal with "salesmen" for buying equipment, equipment dealers for the most part are not much different from used car dealers,it's all the same game...........


Yes, we do buy mulch at wholesale pricing.........because we too deal in volume and are once again selling it just the same as you are doing with equipment...........do dealers buy equipment at retail pricing?
The equipment we buy is not being re-sold, so I'm not sure your example strikes where you wanted it to, but I do understand where you are trying to go with it. At times we do sell mulch and other items at a lower price for those customers that give repeat business........it's a "business" relationship.

Bottom line........
Why will I give you $2800 for a 36" mower that I can buy for $2500?
Why will I buy a set of gator blades from my dealer for $50 when I can have them shipped to the door without having to pick them up for 30% less?
Are the online companies selling them at a loss? I don't think so.........
There are very few dealerships that have what it takes to support "real" commercial clientele,sad but true........poor workmanship on repairs,increased pricing,lack of in house parts inventory,etc., etc.
I deal with dealers less and less because I can be profitable more and more without them. Once again, sad but true. We have and will continue to have excess equipment so dealer support is less of an issue because dealer support exists less and less as each year goes by.

Just some of my thoughts. I'd be happy to hear your response.......

tallimeca
07-11-2006, 11:49 PM
I really don't deal with "salesmen" for buying equipment, equipment dealers for the most part are not much different from used car dealers,it's all the same game...........

Couldn't be further from the truth. You must deal with larger chain store dealers who employ salesman who work on commisson. If you re-read my original post, the equipment we sell is priced at sale price. So the price is right there, no one is selling it to them.

The equipment we buy is not being re-sold, so I'm not sure your example strikes where you wanted it to, but I do understand where you are trying to go with it.

You must have missed the comment about how dealers who move more volume get better prices. Just because I got better prices on equipment because I bought 2 dozen , rather than 1 dozen, doesn't mean I'm going to sell them cheaper then I normally would. Just like if you bought mulch at volume, you wouldn't normally sell it cheaper then your normally would because the money you saved goes right to your bottom line. It's called profit and profit is hard to come by these days. Granted, there are situations where you may sell it for cheaper because you have room do to it now, but not as a rule of thumb. I think you would agree with that.

Why will I give you $2800 for a 36" mower that I can buy for $2500?
Why will I buy a set of gator blades from my dealer for $50 when I can have them shipped to the door without having to pick them up for 30% less?
Are the online companies selling them at a loss? I don't think so.........
There are very few dealerships that have what it takes to support "real" commercial clientele,sad but true........poor workmanship on repairs,increased pricing,lack of in house parts inventory,etc., etc.
I deal with dealers less and less because I can be profitable more and more without them. Once again, sad but true. We have and will continue to have excess equipment so dealer support is less of an issue because dealer support exists less and less as each year goes by.

If you can buy the same machine for 300 hundred dollars less, it's 300 in your pocket. However, equipment bought from my dealership is priority in the service department, so if you traveled 50 miles to save the 300 bucks, is it worth the drive to get something fixed quicker then if you had paid the advertised sale price, no more, no less........that I am selling it for, and because it was bought from me, the machine was in in the morning and out in the afternoon?

One of the major problems in the outdoor power equipment is a shortage of technicians. That's no secret. Competition from internet vendors selling parts and equipment has affected dealerships. Once of the major affects is cause shop labor to rise to make up for the lack of profit in equipment and parts sales. This also cuts down on what a dealer can afford to pay QUALITY technicians......and that's if can find them. I agree that there is some shotty work going on out there. I have equipment come in my shop that I can't believe some of the stuff we see. Granted, my guys aren't perfect and mistakes happen from time to time.

As far as dealer support goes, it's hard to say you rely on it less and less. That may be the case, but I can tell you that manufacturers are pushing issue that make dealer support a must. Changing parts is one thing. Diagnosing and repairing issues is another.

The belt broke. Ok. Put a new one on and adjust it. Simple. Right??

26hp EFI cranks but won't start. Has out of sync code regestered in the ECU. Engine has fuel, has spark, still won't start. What's is wrong??? There isn't a Landscaper out there that can answer that question without having some sort of formal training from Kohler, and familiar with using the bosch EFI diagnostic software. There are talks of having to have emissions compliant equipment, where you will have to have it tested and registered , almost like a car!!!! From what I hear, it's already bad enough out in Cali.


I really appreciate the replies guys. The feedback is great.

Brianslawn
07-11-2006, 11:54 PM
my dealer treats me pretty good. i get stihl equipment for $10 above costs. parts 10% off. the occasional repair slip is misplaced. lunch every now and then.

but then i spend more a month than most of you do in a year.


30% is a common mark-up. some brands set the price and dealer might only get a 10% mark up. most $10k mowers the dealer makes $1500-$2000 on. almost makes me want to reopen our old one.

J&R Landscaping
07-11-2006, 11:55 PM
Great Point and partly the reason I asked the question. If i sell everything the same to everyone as on the sale for......Landscaper A pays what it's priced......Landscaper B pays what it's priced. All is well.

If Landscaper A payed Sugg retail, and Landscaper B came in and paid promo.........they both start shooting the bull at lunch at the local sandwhich shop........

Landscaper A will probably no longer be my customer.

The reason why I asked about markup is because some customers come in and think the 200 dollar trimmer they just bought........I made 100 bucks on it. When in reality, i made 40 if i'm lucky.

It depends when you buy the unit. If my dealer gets a machine from spring order, it will be cheaper than if he has to order it in special in the middle of July. I've worked at a few OPE dealerships and know somewhat about how the pricing game goes.

Brianslawn
07-11-2006, 11:59 PM
Couldn't be further from the truth. You must deal with larger chain store dealers who employ salesman who work on commisson. If you re-read my original post, the equipment we sell is priced at sale price. So the price is right there, no one is selling it to them.



You must have missed the comment about how dealers who move more volume get better prices. Just because I got better prices on equipment because I bought 2 dozen , rather than 1 dozen, doesn't mean I'm going to sell them cheaper then I normally would. Just like if you bought mulch at volume, you wouldn't normally sell it cheaper then your normally would because the money you saved goes right to your bottom line. It's called profit and profit is hard to come by these days. Granted, there are situations where you may sell it for cheaper because you have room do to it now, but not as a rule of thumb. I think you would agree with that.



If you can buy the same machine for 300 hundred dollars less, it's 300 in your pocket. However, equipment bought from my dealership is priority in the service department, so if you traveled 50 miles to save the 300 bucks, is it worth the drive to get something fixed quicker then if you had paid the advertised sale price, no more, no less........that I am selling it for, and because it was bought from me, the machine was in in the morning and out in the afternoon?

One of the major problems in the outdoor power equipment is a shortage of technicians. That's no secret. Competition from internet vendors selling parts and equipment has affected dealerships. Once of the major affects is cause shop labor to rise to make up for the lack of profit in equipment and parts sales. This also cuts down on what a dealer can afford to pay QUALITY technicians......and that's if can find them. I agree that there is some shotty work going on out there. I have equipment come in my shop that I can't believe some of the stuff we see. Granted, my guys aren't perfect and mistakes happen from time to time.

As far as dealer support goes, it's hard to say you rely on it less and less. That may be the case, but I can tell you that manufacturers are pushing issue that make dealer support a must. Changing parts is one thing. Diagnosing and repairing issues is another.

The belt broke. Ok. Put a new one on and adjust it. Simple. Right??

26hp EFI cranks but won't start. Has out of sync code regestered in the ECU. Engine has fuel, has spark, still won't start. What's is wrong??? There isn't a Landscaper out there that can answer that question without having some sort of formal training from Kohler, and familiar with using the bosch EFI diagnostic software. There are talks of having to have emissions compliant equipment, where you will have to have it tested and registered , almost like a car!!!! From what I hear, it's already bad enough out in Cali.


I really appreciate the replies guys. The feedback is great.



i can! but then again i got the computer program.



now if i bought the 2 dozen that you got a a discount... would i get a discount?

tacoma200
07-12-2006, 12:18 AM
I have found no relationship to price paid and dealer support. If anything the lower priced dealers tend to have a better staff and mechanics. I just bought a mower with a suggested retail of well over $10,000 for less than $8000. As to the quote "Example. Exmark 36 Metro with 15hp Kai Kawi engine and ECS handles.
Suggested List $2899.99
Promo Price $2799.99
A whole $100 dollars off suggested retail! wow! Not familiar with this equipment but $100 off retail has got to be a joke. If I saved WELL over $2000 dollars and the dealer made money that tells me a whole lot. I'm sure he didn't loose any. And I will remember this dealer and probably do business again.

dvmcmrhp52
07-12-2006, 12:29 AM
Couldn't be further from the truth. You must deal with larger chain store dealers who employ salesman who work on commisson. If you re-read my original post, the equipment we sell is priced at sale price. So the price is right there, no one is selling it to them.



You must have missed the comment about how dealers who move more volume get better prices. Just because I got better prices on equipment because I bought 2 dozen , rather than 1 dozen, doesn't mean I'm going to sell them cheaper then I normally would. Just like if you bought mulch at volume, you wouldn't normally sell it cheaper then your normally would because the money you saved goes right to your bottom line. It's called profit and profit is hard to come by these days. Granted, there are situations where you may sell it for cheaper because you have room do to it now, but not as a rule of thumb. I think you would agree with that.



If you can buy the same machine for 300 hundred dollars less, it's 300 in your pocket. However, equipment bought from my dealership is priority in the service department, so if you traveled 50 miles to save the 300 bucks, is it worth the drive to get something fixed quicker then if you had paid the advertised sale price, no more, no less........that I am selling it for, and because it was bought from me, the machine was in in the morning and out in the afternoon?

One of the major problems in the outdoor power equipment is a shortage of technicians. That's no secret. Competition from internet vendors selling parts and equipment has affected dealerships. Once of the major affects is cause shop labor to rise to make up for the lack of profit in equipment and parts sales. This also cuts down on what a dealer can afford to pay QUALITY technicians......and that's if can find them. I agree that there is some shotty work going on out there. I have equipment come in my shop that I can't believe some of the stuff we see. Granted, my guys aren't perfect and mistakes happen from time to time.

As far as dealer support goes, it's hard to say you rely on it less and less. That may be the case, but I can tell you that manufacturers are pushing issue that make dealer support a must. Changing parts is one thing. Diagnosing and repairing issues is another.

The belt broke. Ok. Put a new one on and adjust it. Simple. Right??

26hp EFI cranks but won't start. Has out of sync code regestered in the ECU. Engine has fuel, has spark, still won't start. What's is wrong??? There isn't a Landscaper out there that can answer that question without having some sort of formal training from Kohler, and familiar with using the bosch EFI diagnostic software. There are talks of having to have emissions compliant equipment, where you will have to have it tested and registered , almost like a car!!!! From what I hear, it's already bad enough out in Cali.


I really appreciate the replies guys. The feedback is great.





I deal with no chain stores. Period.
Your price on the floor is your price? You're quite unusual.
Sale price is not $100 below msrp. Just don't fly.

I don't have to drive 50 miles to another dealer, and we will continue to keep excess equipment on hand so "insatant" fixes aren't necessary because more and more it doesn't happen anyway. As you've said, there most certainly is a lack of talent in the equipment repair field.

If the "service" truly existed from most dealerships, I would agree with your line of thought, however it just isn't the case out there in that big old world..........."customer service" seems to have died............

Our vehicles don't go to the car dealership either.........I can get quicker, more reliable service from an independent, at lower cost as well as having "jim's small engine repair shop" fix that kohler EFI problem. I really don't see the difference between car dealerships and equipment dealers........help me understand if it exists.........

Luvs2Play
07-12-2006, 12:31 AM
We buy five mowers every two years, Joe homeowner buys one every ten years. I want a better price and deserve a better price. As far as service, I demand it from the dealer, LCO's are the bread and butter for them. I don't care that much about the purchase price, if the service is there for me. I am making my living with my equipment, mess with my living and your business will take an immediate hit in the pocket! Parts are parts, cost what they will, I need them tomorrow. If the dealer is not going to have them the next day, they had better not be availiable. I am not waiting on any dealer, they had better be waiting on me. We are at this time having a problem with a dealer and manufacturer, if this is ever solved, they will both be history for us. I am not at the mercy of any dealer, no matter what they think of themselves.

Audrey
07-12-2006, 01:11 AM
My question is, with the dealers you buy from , how do they advertise their equipment as far as price goes?

There's usually just a tag hanging there. Most of the dealers write a number there and that's that. It ends up being the "used car game". I despise it, but that's how it seems to be here. Cash is king. I would much prefer if they had a cash and credit card price on it, and in no way deviated from that number. Put your lowest possible number on there and leave it alone. I hate getting jerked around playing BS games.

********

Do you guys feel more comfortable walking in a paying a manufacturer's advertised sale price, or if you didn't know what it was, would you walk out the door feeling better that i was selling it for 2899.99, and you "got me down" to say 2829.99?


Everyone likes a deal. I exclusively dealt with a dealer for about 5 years. Dealt being past tense. I had walked in, paid what was on the tag, and left. I hate dickering for prices. My deal there was that he took care of me in other ways. Advice, parts diagrams, answered tech questions over the phone, etc...
From now on, to a point, I shop for price. I will not squabble for $5, but I darn sure will for $1000 net over a competitor's price on a 10K mower. I understand the dealer needs to make a buck to stay in business, but work with me. I'm loyal to a point. I would have gladly split the difference (500). He wasn't interested. And that's okay, it's his shop. He came down a little to where the difference was 1000, but that was it.

So, because the dealer took a hard stance on his price quote, he lost the sale. Now he made ZERO. Zero on the sale, zero on accessories, and zero dollars on servicing of that machine. And more than likely, because I'm piss** he did that, he will lose sales on a pole trimmer, pressure washer, and a blower. I will now also do my own blade sharpening.
Maybe the small engine trade is different from other markets selling service and commodities, but where I come from, a little piece of the pie is better than no pie at all. Even if he totaled $100 net profit after costs on the machine sale, isn't that better than $0 ? I was there for everything for 5 years. He would have continued to have that customer, and those subsuquent sales.

**********
Also, how much of a markup would you think dealers make on a piece of equipment. Let's use the above example. What percentage do you think a dealer makes on that unit?

10-18% on equipment. Much better on parts.




A

Audrey
07-12-2006, 01:18 AM
A whole $100 dollars off suggested retail! wow! Not familiar with this equipment but $100 off retail has got to be a joke.

I think he was just using this and these numbers for an example in his question. Not necessarily what he would sell a unit for.


A

tacoma200
07-12-2006, 01:43 AM
I think he was just using this and these numbers for an example in his question. Not necessarily what he would sell a unit for.


A

Maybe your right but when I have walked into a dealership and I have many. At the slightest hesitation they start cutting the price by several hundred dollars. And as your getting ready to go out the door saying you want to look around at a few more dealers before you make up your mind they pull out the big guns. It's almost comical. They longer you look and the harder you seem to be having making up your mind the more generous they seem to become. I'm sure the dealer that started this post wants some good honest answers and I think he's getting them. Mixed bag of opinions. I think they knocked $100 dollars off my back pack blower last time so it was odd that he was talking $100 dollars off list on a mower that expensive. Just take brand X ZTR that list for $10,500 that I've been looking at. No dealer has quoted it over $9000 even on the fist attempt. And I was able to get below $8000 before it was over. All I can do is tell others about my experiences. Just giving honest answers even if they hurt a little. Why lie to the dealer . He won't learn anything that way. He needs to know how rediculous $100 dollars off a $3000 dollar piece of equipment sounds. By the way I downloaded your pics of the Scag you took. As I said before very impressive photograhpy, Scag needs you on the payroll. Tacoma

Audrey
07-12-2006, 02:20 AM
HA! Thanks for the compliment Tacoma! :)

Hey, that's great! You saved over $1600 on a better riding machine that will cut just as nice. That's a lot of $40 lawns.

Yeah, I wasn't exactly glowing in my respose about my dealer. You're right, that's how one learns though.

Not to be political at all, but I really think the economy has a lot to with how dealers start hacking at the price like that. I guess (mine excluded) some dealers really need the sale. Comical yes, but in a way, kind of sad. They must be really hungry.
I have no qualms about beating a car salesman or a realtor into the dirt over things. Even trivial ones. I have a genuine dislike for those folks. Sometimes I do it for sport. I can't do it to another with grease under his nails and working for a living. It could just as easily be me on the other side of that counter. It was at one point, and may be again in the future.

A

AAELI
07-12-2006, 09:28 AM
I have read the thread and agree with much that has been said both for and against dealer pricing.

I have rarely sold anything at or below MSRP. If you value your work why undersell? You like the lowball down the street, then by all means use him. I deal with professional outdoor power equipment and do so in a professional manner. If you want junk or do not need or want advice to help you make money then please let me know I am wasting my time with you.

I have yet to find an lco who is not interested in no down time with equipment. I sell that as an add on. Not interested in making money, then what are you doing in the business??

I do not gouge, I deliver on my promises. I often tell the customer that I aim to please and have rarely missed my aim. I do not carry all parts but often do cannabalize new equipment to keep my customers mowing, lco or homeowner.

I have mowed upwards of 4500 acres of grass a month on 4 different military bases here for over 10 years. Contracting on this scale has given me good experience for dealing with equipment used on the job. I am the only dealer in the area of 10 dealers with any type of experience of this sort. It makes a difference in my sales pitch and ability to understand the lco and homeowner when it comes to their individual needs.

I have my share of pita customers that I work on to keep satisfied. I do not discount equipment and jeopardize my profitability. I use my profits to stock more parts and accesories. It has worked so far.

6 years ago in a business downturn I tried to move a couple of hundred thousand dollars of inventory at a sale price. Stupid move. Buyers do not materialize simply because of price, there must be need also. Selling at a discount simply made me lose profits quicker. I was once told by a good business friend that a 10% discount would require 60% more business in the same amount of time in order to stay profitable. I took his advice and raised prices and found that I was able to provide more value for the customers buck. Sales without service = no value. Sales with service=value.

Good thread with enough diverse comments to make any dealer and lco think carefully before spending / selling.

Good business to all of you.

tallimeca
07-12-2006, 09:55 AM
thanks again for the feedback guys!!

Maybe your right but when I have walked into a dealership and I have many. At the slightest hesitation they start cutting the price by several hundred dollars. And as your getting ready to go out the door saying you want to look around at a few more dealers before you make up your mind they pull out the big guns. It's almost comical.

If they start cutting the price by several hundred dollars, then they have it listed for SUGG retail, and not PROMO SALE. On PROMO price, if you started dropping the unit hundreds of dollars, you'd be giving it away. I won't do that. It's not worth it. If I can't make money on something, i'm not selling it. Would you cut someone's lawn for free all year just to get their fall clean up??? (well, if you work where there are leaves anyway)? If you would, you are a fool.

i can! but then again i got the computer program.

The computer program will point you in a direction, it will not tell you whats wrong. Just like on a car.

now if i bought the 2 dozen that you got a a discount... would i get a discount?

You would get a volume discount if you bought 2 dozen of anything, reguardless of what I paid. That's is an extreme situation. I've never had anyone come in and buy 24 36" walkbehinds.

Your price on the floor is your price? You're quite unusual.
Sale price is not $100 below msrp. Just don't fly.

On this unit, yes, sale is 100 below msrp. Dealers on average make about 15% profit selling anything at sale. That's doesn't factor in shipping and assembly, and delivery if it applies. By the time your done, most dealers are selling you equipment at about 5-8 percent profit margin. That's ok on large ZTR's. Not ok on small stuff. That's the way it goes.

Here's an example of a larger unit.

Exmark Lazer Z with 60" deck and 30hp Kohler. Popular seller.

SUGGESTED RETAIL is $10,877.00 PROMO SALE is $9,799.

You would walk in my store and see it stickered for 9,799. You may walk into another store and see it for 10,877. In the other store, you will haggle and get it for 10k even. Then you come into my store and see I had it stickered for $200 less then you paid for yours, even after you negotiated them down 900 dollars!!!

Now, on this unit, there is a higher DOLLAR markup. I may be willing to sell this unit as low as....say 9400 if it's a regular customer who asked if I could do a little better because it's a little over his budget.

The problem is you will get these "fly by night" guys who go where ever they get the best deal and try to get me down on the promo price. I've never seen these guys before, chances are, probably won't again, unless there is a warranty problem. Yeah I can sell it low ball, make a few bucks and move the equipment. What is a regular comes in and says I talked to Joe Schmo and you sold him a Lazer for 400 bucks less then you sold it to me and i've been doing buisness with you for 10 years!!! It's makes for a bad situation all around.

dvmcmrhp52
07-12-2006, 06:06 PM
I have read the thread and agree with much that has been said both for and against dealer pricing.

I have rarely sold anything at or below MSRP. If you value your work why undersell? You like the lowball down the street, then by all means use him. I deal with professional outdoor power equipment and do so in a professional manner. If you want junk or do not need or want advice to help you make money then please let me know I am wasting my time with you.

I have yet to find an lco who is not interested in no down time with equipment. I sell that as an add on. Not interested in making money, then what are you doing in the business??

I do not gouge, I deliver on my promises. I often tell the customer that I aim to please and have rarely missed my aim. I do not carry all parts but often do cannabalize new equipment to keep my customers mowing, lco or homeowner.

I have mowed upwards of 4500 acres of grass a month on 4 different military bases here for over 10 years. Contracting on this scale has given me good experience for dealing with equipment used on the job. I am the only dealer in the area of 10 dealers with any type of experience of this sort. It makes a difference in my sales pitch and ability to understand the lco and homeowner when it comes to their individual needs.

I have my share of pita customers that I work on to keep satisfied. I do not discount equipment and jeopardize my profitability. I use my profits to stock more parts and accesories. It has worked so far.

6 years ago in a business downturn I tried to move a couple of hundred thousand dollars of inventory at a sale price. Stupid move. Buyers do not materialize simply because of price, there must be need also. Selling at a discount simply made me lose profits quicker. I was once told by a good business friend that a 10% discount would require 60% more business in the same amount of time in order to stay profitable. I took his advice and raised prices and found that I was able to provide more value for the customers buck. Sales without service = no value. Sales with service=value.

Good thread with enough diverse comments to make any dealer and lco think carefully before spending / selling.

Good business to all of you.




Selling equipment in Guam is a bit different from selling here in the states. If you were to try to sell equipment at MSRP or above and never move on that pricing structure you would no longer be in business. That's just reality.

How many people do you know that pay sticker price for a car or truck? (none)

jazak
07-12-2006, 07:15 PM
Some dealers around here mark up there mowers $500+. Wright 32" Stander dealer 1 $4688
dealer 2 $5300. No one ever buys the MSRP price though so the mower just sits. :laugh: :hammerhead:

tacoma200
07-12-2006, 07:33 PM
Quote "Here's an example of a larger unit.

Exmark Lazer Z with 60" deck and 30hp Kohler. Popular seller.

SUGGESTED RETAIL is $10,877.00 PROMO SALE is $9,799."

I paid $8200 last year for that unit with the 27 hp Lazer Zand had offers of $8000 if I would drive a few miles. I know that was an 05 but it was still $2000 or so below suggested retail. No trouble with service after the sale. Ask a different dealer this week about the same unit in an 06 model (Lazer Z 27/60"triton) and he came down to $8600 within minutes of us talking on the phone. I'm sure I could have the unit for even less in person. So I'm not even on the same page as some of you. I'm not beating the dealers over the head to get a good deal, it's more like they are tackling me as I go out the door to get me to buy. Not sure why that is.

TheLawnBarber
07-12-2006, 07:53 PM
I got my 2006 Metro 36, 15 Kawasaki for $2480 plus tax after that

tallimeca
07-12-2006, 09:51 PM
in both your above cases, looks to me like those dealers were anxious to move those units. They were probably sitting on some unit. Both of those prices are bascially at cost. 8k for a 27/60 is below level 2 cost I believe. Good luck. They must be registered as non profit organizations. Good luck to them. Fortunately, you guys benefit in those cases!!!:clapping:

If i can't sell a unit for profit, I won't sell it.

TriCountyLawn
07-12-2006, 10:01 PM
I don't typical mind paying what there asking for a piece of equipment ( within reason) What ticks me off is when in the last year everything that I have needed has required two trips for them to get it right. Anyone else feel like they know more about mowing equipment then there dealer?

TNT Lawncare
07-13-2006, 12:00 AM
Ok. I have to admit, I only read the first page of this thread and the part about the oil filters got my attention. I have a 2005 Ferris IS1500Z with a 21hp Kawasaki engine. The filter that my dealer sells for it is a "Kawasaki" filter for 9.99 but since I bought my mower there I get 10% off. However, I work at Autozone for a P/T job in the winter and cross refed the # on the Kaw filter and it came back to a STP filter that we sell for $3.49. I get it and visually compare the 2 filters. Can't tell a difference. Come to find out, the same company makes both. Just my 2 cents.

Brianslawn
07-13-2006, 12:01 AM
haha. yeah the computer program isnt as detailed as i would like. my obd1/obd2 scanner is better than the kohler program. i got all the same kohler tech papers that you do and i got dealer access to some mfgs websites. when youre the chief mechanic for a large fleet, you learn a lot about repairs. i can switch out ch18s 62623 engines in an hour. the crew can get a bite to eat and be back out and finish in a timely manner by the time im done.

as for extreme situations... my dealer told me that only the city of springdale, ar, buys in larger volume than me.

as for any dealer... if someone walks into your shop wearing torn shorts and a grey company shirt and says "hi, im brianslawn" they better toss me a fat tire and order pizza quick... cause i dont mess with people that dick me around. i was outside the front door of the ford dealership when they ran and hollered accepting my terms on the 2006 f550 crew 4x4. they were the 3rd dealership i contacted, too. first 2 let me get too far out the door and i didnt bother turning around. i paid cash for 3 trucks since i bought the ford, too, last fall.

i will be the best customer that any dealer ever had. if you let me walk away, i will not be back.

anyone to ever take a chance on me has not and will not regret it.

that is all i got to say.

Dashunde
07-13-2006, 12:25 AM
Sorry, but I typically dont care about my dealers profits or losses, just as they dont really care if the car dealership they bought their ride from made any money. It all boils down to it being their own problem in being competitive with those around them.
In the end, I'll beat the dealer down to a price I like... otherwise I might as well flush my money.
(Important note.. I will give up some cash if I actually LIKE the guy who I am dealing with)

Here is an example.
I bought my BR600 through work.
Cost was around $335
My price was $380
MSRP is about $480 (best price I was quoted anyway)
So if a dealer sells a 600 to most everyone else they take in around $145 in mark-up.

My FS80r has a cost of around $230 and MSRP's for about $320
Theres $90.

Now I understand that mowers dont have that percentage of mark-up in cost versus MSRP... but there is still excellent money in them depending on the brand.

My advice? Sell all of your big stuff $200-$500 less than anyone else within a hundred miles of your store, provide a good buying and demo experience, and provide even better shop service.

Use the big-ticket stuff to obtain new customers instead of sales deals.
Who wouldnt buy from a dealer like that.. over and over again?

Brianslawn
07-13-2006, 12:35 AM
Sorry, but I typically dont care about my dealers profits or losses, just as they dont really care if the car dealership they bought their ride from made any money. It all boils down to it being their own problem in being competitive with those around them.
In the end, I'll beat the dealer down to a price I like... otherwise I might as well flush my money.
(Important note.. I will give up some cash if I actually LIKE the guy who I am dealing with)

Here is an example.
I bought my BR600 through work.
Cost was around $335
My price was $380
MSRP is about $480 (best price I was quoted anyway)
So if a dealer sells a 600 to most everyone else they take in around $145 in mark-up.

My FS80r has a cost of around $230 and MSRP's for about $320
Theres $90.

Now I understand that mowers dont have that percentage of mark-up in cost versus MSRP... but there is still excellent money in them depending on the brand.

My advice? Sell all of your big stuff $200-$500 less than anyone else within a hundred miles of your store, provide a good buying and demo experience, and provide even better shop service.

Use the big-ticket stuff to obtain new customers instead of sales deals.
Who wouldnt buy from a dealer like that.. over and over again?



all the fs80r's i ever bought were $250. my 110r was less than that, even. these were all regular dealer price or close, to it.

AAELI
07-13-2006, 07:44 AM
Selling equipment in Guam is a bit different from selling here in the states. If you were to try to sell equipment at MSRP or above and never move on that pricing structure you would no longer be in business. That's just reality.

How many people do you know that pay sticker price for a car or truck?
(none)

My competitors sell at or below MSRP. I outsell them 6 ways to Sunday. (I am closed on Sunday.) Providing real value is reality. Stupidity is trying to be something you are not. My competitors have consistently under priced me all the way around even on their hourly rate for repairs. The problem they have is that their focus is not on the service to the customer or knowledge of the equipment but on beating my price. There are only 160,000 people on the island. I probably see 3000-5000 a year go through my store. I have sold and serviced more equipment than the bigger stores and have a reputation of good service. When I had a distributor dilute my sales by opening another competitor I stopped selling the brand. Customers traded in their machines for the current brand I sell in order to get the best service.

This type of dealership will succeed no matter what the geographic location. Dropping prices just to make a sale and hoping somehow to make profits elsewhere just does not make good business sense.

I do not give discounts on mowing as an lco and see no reason to do the same as a dealer for one or two unit sales. I have made good deals for lco's when they purchase volume. I even set one up as a dealer to help him gain more profit on his contracting. His purchases and subsequent sales made it a win / win situation for both of us.

I became a dealer / distributor as a result of poor service by the dealership I bought my equipment from for my contracting jobs. I became the best dealer Shindaiwa ever had, at least for the years of 1988 - 1999, as a result of my commitment to my customers. .

When I visited a dealership in Houston last year I showed them the requirements to sell product with real value. They are still in business. They do not carry near the inventory in parts that I do as their dist. can same day or overnight parts for repair. That would mean the ability to stock fewer slow movers and still not compromise service. That is something I cannot do because of my distance to distributors or manufacturers of the products I sell.

tacoma200
07-13-2006, 09:38 AM
Not being smart but Ronald McDonald and Sam Walton have a strong case for low price. Just watch the shopping crowds the day after Thanksgiving and see what they will do to save a few bucks (including fighting, sleeping on the sidewalk, etc.)

DADDY D
07-13-2006, 10:58 AM
Tellimeca all i can say is right on if any loc thinks the dealer is getting rich and owes them somthing more than good service and fair prices,trade places with that dealer for a year.do the loc mow there dealers lawn at a dicount price and listen the dealer fuss when it rains and there lawn is 4 days past due to be cut?

newz7151
07-13-2006, 11:17 AM
Not being smart but Ronald McDonald and Sam Walton have a strong case for low price. Just watch the shopping crowds the day after Thanksgiving and see what they will do to save a few bucks (including fighting, sleeping on the sidewalk, etc.)

And how long does some of that crap you "saved a few bucks on" last you ? And what tastes better.. a Roo burger from MickieDs, or a nice juicy burger from TGI Fridays (or other decent go in and sit down and have to actually wait for your burger to be cooked from raw place, and I don't mean raw like just came out of the box of "burger patties")

topsites
07-13-2006, 11:25 AM
And how long does some of that crap you "saved a few bucks on" last you ? And what tastes better.. a Roo burger from MickieDs, or a nice juicy burger from TGI Fridays (or other decent go in and sit down and have to actually wait for your burger to be cooked from raw place, and I don't mean raw like just came out of the box of "burger patties")

I agree, it's just like with synthetic oil, sometimes spending more actually costs less in the long run and again, I'm ready to pay the price but see here's where the problem begins anew... I walk in a dealership and some are too caught up noticing the (antique) bmw that they think I'm made of money and they jack the price another few dollars and THAT makes me mad.

When I walk into a dealership to order a shaft for the transmission, I don't need some young salesman on the up-and-up try and talk me into buying the whole transmission because rebuilding them is a pita (which it can be). No, I want the shaft, can you order it or how much longer do I need to argue with you before I walk out and order it from J.Thomas...

Which that brings me to another point: If I can find supplies cheaper (some half price and less), then what is the problem with dealers, why can't they do the same? I understand there has to be a markup, but if the dealer went through the same trouble I went through, they can tack on their 20 or 30% markup on the cheaper item (it's the same thing but from another supplier) and still make their profit while I can get the stuff in town. As for why they should go through this, isn't cost reduction a prime priority in the dealer's business, or is it that the dealer doesn't own the dealership so he doesn't care?

I'll again use the example of Toro's rubber grommets... I now order 100 of them for 43 dollars (that's with shipping), so I pay 43 cents each instead of a dollar+. What if the dealer ordered them from the same place, he can then easily sell them for 75 cents each because that's way cheaper than a dollar+ and still make decent cash on the markup, I bet most dealers don't see 30%+ on the markup anyway, or do they?

Dealers could easily swipe off about 10 automotive oil filters for $3 each and take them to their store and sell them for $5 each after they remove the stickers, and tell the customer this is the LP filter and the Kohler filter is recommended but the LP filter is $5 while the Kohler is $10, which would you like? How good is the LP filter? I run storebrand oil filters on the bmw, and what's good enough for that is good enough for the Kohler (but yes, you GOT to run a synth oil).

topsites
07-13-2006, 11:41 AM
Ok. I have to admit, I only read the first page of this thread and the part about the oil filters got my attention. I have a 2005 Ferris IS1500Z with a 21hp Kawasaki engine. The filter that my dealer sells for it is a "Kawasaki" filter for 9.99 but since I bought my mower there I get 10% off. However, I work at Autozone for a P/T job in the winter and cross refed the # on the Kaw filter and it came back to a STP filter that we sell for $3.49. I get it and visually compare the 2 filters. Can't tell a difference. Come to find out, the same company makes both. Just my 2 cents.

Yeah see that's what I mean... I couldn't cross-ref mine because it wouldn't, but I'm a regular customer at a store near here, so regular that they don't care what I do, they know me that well and they know I wouldn't steal or try something stupid. So I walked in with my old filter and went to the filters section and pulled all the ones that looked to be a close fit (one at a time lol), and compared them each to my old one until I found one that looked right and put everything back in its place. Of course I still took a bit of a chance but I knew once installed, I would be sure, so I paid the $3 and off I went, and I got lucky the first one was the right one.

So now I run AA-3614 filters on my Kohlers, $2.99 + tax.
All you really have to worry about is thread diameter, thread pitch (dunno if that's what it's called but how coarse or fine the thread is), and diameter of the rubber gasket seal (this last doesn't have to be exact but close would help). Once installed you got to check it real good, as you thread it on you need to look at the seal and make sure it's going to hit the mating surface right and fit tight and make sure the thread feels good too (not tight or lose).

newz7151
07-13-2006, 01:20 PM
Which that brings me to another point: If I can find supplies cheaper (some half price and less), then what is the problem with dealers, why can't they do the same? I understand there has to be a markup, but if the dealer went through the same trouble I went through, they can tack on their 20 or 30% markup on the cheaper item (it's the same thing but from another supplier) and still make their profit while I can get the stuff in town.)

Do you know what a preseason, or spring order is?

If not, it's what the manufacturer distributors call the rip that they put to dealers every year that more or less forces dealers to pre order substantial $$$$ amounts of products/parts from the distributors in order to get the priveledge of remaining factory authorized dealers.

Unless you've done what some of the other dealers that lurk on LS have done and gone from mowing to opening and operating a legitimate dealership, you have no idea what some dealers have to put up with just to retain their "authorized dealer" status. So.. stick with your profession, and go out and cut some more weeds.

tacoma200
07-13-2006, 01:26 PM
And how long does some of that crap you "saved a few bucks on" last you ? And what tastes better.. a Roo burger from MickieDs, or a nice juicy burger from TGI Fridays (or other decent go in and sit down and have to actually wait for your burger to be cooked from raw place, and I don't mean raw like just came out of the box of "burger patties")

I was just making a point that the big boys in this country got there on price. My Grasshoppers, Exmarks and now Hustler will last just as long as the one others paid retail for and my service will be top notch. Sorry you didn't get my point as intended. Price is more important to most is the only point I'm making. As I said in an earlier post I have found no relationship to price and service on lawn equipment so far. Thanks for your reply

sawman65
07-13-2006, 03:33 PM
well said newz, but lets add some stuff like the cost to train tech,s advertiseing,taxes, freight and on and on. now dont get me wrong we need ya'll and ya'll need us,go ahead and by your parts from the aftermarket, just dont cry when i put your unit behind someone else's that buy's our parts.

Audrey
07-13-2006, 05:25 PM
For the amount that I saved on the new machine alone, I think I'll wait in line somewhere if I have to. For what I now save in ordering accessories and parts online, I can easily afford to pay full price on whatever repairs I may need down the road. There's also plenty of independant shops who are greatful for the business and aren't upset because someone else sold a new unit. As a bonus, I now also save by shopping for price on saws, pruners, blowers, trimmers, and their accessories. I used to walk in and just buy them, regardless of the hang tag. Never again.

Having to take the same machine back twice, for a total of three weeks downtime does not purport excellent service. Especially when no parts needed to be ordered, and the "repairs" were basic for a trained tech. I was a regular for 5 years, and also bought that machine there. This occurance was also taking place when a new machine purchase was on the line.

Why should I purchase a new piece of equipment from a dealer that says he needs to charge me a net of $1000 more than his competitor so he can "take care of me"? The service I received on the mower I did purchase there wasn't exactly stellar. Heck, it still has the main problem, and they admitted they couldn't fix it. What's my incentive? How much longer will a dealer keep a machine if I didn't buy it there? How else will I be "punished" or be made to suffer for my purchasing decision? The need for return trips? Loose bolts? Something maybe, "out of adjustment" a little bit? Something only a trained mower tech might notice that's out of whack?

Nuts on that. I will NOT be put over a barrel because a dealer can't compete. :angry: I will buy another machine for backup if I need to. In doing so, I shall endure zero downtime. I refuse to feel any ill effects because of a dealer's poor attitude. I don't care if it's another 10K to gain independance. I'll forgo the plasma TV set. You will NOT cause me to suffer. I will buy another machine out of spite. That one from your competitor also!
Watch me. :)

I win, the distributor wins, your competitor wins, and the manufacturer wins. Even the state with their sales tax gets a cut.

Everybody wins but the dealer with an attitude. He has to make what he has to make?
Well.... ok.... you go ahead and do that. See ya!

It's not my problem.


A

AAELI
07-13-2006, 05:27 PM
All dealers can buy aftermarket parts cheaper than OEM but we get major pita treatment from the OEM for doing so. Pre-season orders are major credit inhibitors for many dealers. My best selling season is June through December as it rains and keeps sales up while the grass grows. I do not need Oct orders to arrive in Feb -April as the product will sit during the dry season and just look pretty. Yet that is the time I would pay the least amount for product.

Most distributors to our area have no clue as to what will work or when. They keep their distance, like 5000 miles or more. When I did not order during a record dry season I was accused of not wanting to support the brand, even though I had outsold the dist. other 80+ dealers in his geographical area.

Price sells to those interested in price only. Nothing wrong with that market. I deal in premium lines that last with service to support. I also look for good products a fair price but don't have the luxury of Wally Town or other discount stores like you do in your area. I do get the opportunity to pop in to Aussieville, Bali, Japan or P.I. occasionally for real bargains.

I have found discerning buyers that look for quality first and price as a secondary consideration. Same as my in lco business. Quality should not shortchange itself.

AAELI
07-13-2006, 05:40 PM
Having to take the same machine back twice, for a total of three weeks downtime does not purport excellent service. Especially when no parts needed to be ordered, and the "repairs" were basic for a trained tech.

The service I received on the mower I did purchase there wasn't exactly stellar. Heck, it still has the main problem, and they admitted they couldn't fix it. What's my incentive?

Nuts on that. I will NOT be put over a barrel because a dealer can't compete. :angry:
A

Well said! You have proved a GOOD dealers point. Competition isn't only about price! You did not get quality service as you expected to get. Every customer I have regardless of where they bought their machine deserves my best effort. I charge for it and get what I charge. Proving the point that good service has a cost and it ain't always the cheapest around although it can be if there are not call backs / returns and free loaners while your equipment is on the bench.

Competition isn't all about who has the cheaper price. Maybe it is to you as you apparently do not have a very good dealer experience. You are the type of lco I aim to please and gain as a customer. It is good that you at least recognize the service you have been getting as substandard. I hope you did not pay much for what you did get.

dvmcmrhp52
07-13-2006, 06:05 PM
Apparently the two dealers commenting here aren't quite getting what's going on .................


THERE IS NO REAL SERVICE AFTER THE SALE FROM MOST DEALERS.
I can and will do it quicker, cheaper, and with less running around without them.
We used to have reasonably good dealers, it just isn't the case any more and if you listen to the comments on L.S. you might get the idea that that is the norm.........because it is.
So tell me just one more time why I need to pay a premium for a piece of equipment? So the dealer can have lobster with his steak dinner?
You two act as if the folks on this site are ignorant to life in the LCO world and as though the people commenting here are ignorant to what dealers make and need to stay in business. That's simply not the case, however I really don't care if a dealer goes out of business if they can't give me something called customer service.
Nothing more need be said.

Audrey
07-13-2006, 06:40 PM
I will say they are the friendliest folks you could ever meet.

Nope, I hour labor and I hauled it to and from. That was fair. It did take them time to do whatever they did. Now, it's still not fixed...

I didn't even ask price, I just wanted it done. I told them what was wrong, and left them have at it. I wasn't shopping for price at that time. I was as loyal as they come.... at that time. I also did not put any time constraints on them.

Maybe they just couldn't fix it? I dunno...
Maybe he wanted the new mower sale first? Maybe he was ticked that I was looking around at other machines, manufacturers, and prices? Maybe he thought he had the sale in the bag so to speak? I had been there so long.... where else would I go?

They aren't the cheapest around, nor the most expensive. I didn't care about the bill then, nor now. But the more I think on it, the more PISS** I get.

My specific deal, I was willing to put $500 in his pocket on a new machine sale, plus my continued patronage as it had always been. He wanted no parts of it. $1000 net profit or nothing. He HAD to make that. Couldn't make a cent less.
Okey Doke... nothing then.
Nothing nowhere on anything... I understand everyone has their "line in the sand", but now, he's screwed out of every dollar I would have spent there.

Nicest guy one could ever meet. He wasn't rude, obnoxious, or anything like that. He simply asked "what's it worth to you"? And that's what caused me to step back and look.
NO. It's NOT worth $1000 extra on this particular deal. In fact, it's not worth what I've been paying all along. I should have been shopping for price sooner, and paying an independant to fix what I couldn't.

What else can I find online that I'm buying local? Why not buy 2 cycle oil at Wally World? Why should I waste my money around here? If I get the attempted guilt tactic, or the strong arm, and I fully expect I will get punished if I do not yield and comply, why on Earth should I buy at a local dealer?
I'm going to get hosed one way or another when dealing in these terms, so why shouldn't I buy for price?

Don't get me wrong, I am not buying bottom of the line or cheap stuff. Stihl, Echo, Scag Tigers...
Heck, the Snap-On guy can't wait until my day of the week. I don't buy junk and I am not cheap. When I shop for price, it's for quality products. I buy the best, but I WILL pay the lowest amount for it that I can. I will be loyal no more. It doesn't pay.


A

sawman65
07-13-2006, 08:52 PM
i have been in this industry since 1983 and have strived to give the best service i can. i go to all the schools to futher my education in my industry.and pay for that education...dearly.you can go to one of those shade tree places if you want to.i have seen the results of some of these visit's that some people make and its not pretty.i have even seen some posted here.one was a total loss for the guy with the exmark E.F.I. mower it burned to the ground all over a $3.00 clamp.he was mad at exmark.what was exmarks response? you did not have the repair done at a dealer so you are out of luck.kinda like running you lco with no insurance do ya think.

any way i am not here to change your mind just a small realty check.

dvmcmrhp52
07-13-2006, 10:28 PM
i have been in this industry since 1983 and have strived to give the best service i can. i go to all the schools to futher my education in my industry.and pay for that education...dearly.you can go to one of those shade tree places if you want to.i have seen the results of some of these visit's that some people make and its not pretty.i have even seen some posted here.one was a total loss for the guy with the exmark E.F.I. mower it burned to the ground all over a $3.00 clamp.he was mad at exmark.what was exmarks response? you did not have the repair done at a dealer so you are out of luck.kinda like running you lco with no insurance do ya think.

any way i am not here to change your mind just a small realty check.



Problem is that the same shoddy work comes out of the dealerships.

Luvs2Play
07-13-2006, 11:01 PM
i have been in this industry since 1983 and have strived to give the best service i can. i go to all the schools to futher my education in my industry.and pay for that education...dearly.you can go to one of those shade tree places if you want to.i have seen the results of some of these visit's that some people make and its not pretty.i have even seen some posted here.one was a total loss for the guy with the exmark E.F.I. mower it burned to the ground all over a $3.00 clamp.he was mad at exmark.what was exmarks response? you did not have the repair done at a dealer so you are out of luck.kinda like running you lco with no insurance do ya think.

any way i am not here to change your mind just a small realty check.
"Reality check"? If I want to talk to God, I'll go to church. If you can't make it as a dealer, flip some burgers. Listen to all the people here supporting your lifestyle. This is a business that needs to work both ways. If your attitude was placed in my face, I would probably never bless your door with my presence again. I am thankful for the dealer I use, he has never copped the attitude, of course I now buy all my mowers from him, service and parts too.

Audrey
07-13-2006, 11:11 PM
Problem is that the same shoddy work comes out of the dealerships.


I agree.

I also agree that it is tough to find the quality people with the right attitude and wherewithal to WANT to do a good job, be the best they can be, and take pride in their work product. I've seen many who just don't give a rip. Certainly not all, but many. I've asked technical questions over the years and been met with blank stares in return. I guess most of the guys just do oil changes and blade sharpening? The owners/partners of a shop are usually the most conscientious. I would imagine it's because it's their name is on the door.

There are bad independents as well, I won't argue that. But the attitude isn't there when I come in with a machine bought elsewhere.

A

sawman65
07-14-2006, 07:56 AM
"Reality check"? If I want to talk to God, I'll go to church. If you can't make it as a dealer, flip some burgers. Listen to all the people here supporting your lifestyle. This is a business that needs to work both ways. If your attitude was placed in my face, I would probably never bless your door with my presence again. I am thankful for the dealer I use, he has never copped the attitude, of course I now buy all my mowers from him, service and parts too.

who said anything about god? and i have MADE IT as a dealer for 20 some odd years. and i do listen. just not to missinformed people like yourself.so you had a bad time with your hustler dealer,dont condem us all.lco's put my beans on the table and i make damn sure they can put theres on the table.lco's make up over 75%of my customer base i treat them right and they pay for it.i dont have many complaints and the ones that do are most times in the wrong, they just want to raise he!! on some one. and the many years i have been in this thing i see they have the highest turnover rates with there help.

audry i am glad you have a good shop to fix the things that you cant fix yourself. but what about updates.recalls and the like you could be missing out
and then there is warranty do you pay to have that done?

Luvs2Play
07-14-2006, 09:02 AM
i have been in this industry since 1983 and have strived to give the best service i can. i go to all the schools to futher my education in my industry.and pay for that education...dearly.you can go to one of those shade tree places if you want to.i have seen the results of some of these visit's that some people make and its not pretty.i have even seen some posted here.one was a total loss for the guy with the exmark E.F.I. mower it burned to the ground all over a $3.00 clamp.he was mad at exmark.what was exmarks response? you did not have the repair done at a dealer so you are out of luck.kinda like running you lco with no insurance do ya think.

any way i am not here to change your mind just a small realty check.
In the beginning I was kinda supportive of dealers, the longer this goes, the less I care about you. I buy my pickups, trailers, tools, pay taxes, and lots of other odds and ends. All part of doing what I love to do. You see, dealers are not the only ones to have expenses in order to stay in business. I cater to my better customers some, it only makes good business sense. Don't bore us with your costs trying to make us feel sorry for you, it won't hold water here.

tacoma200
07-14-2006, 09:37 AM
Well said! You have proved a GOOD dealers point. Competition isn't only about price! You did not get quality service as you expected to get. Every customer I have regardless of where they bought their machine deserves my best effort. I charge for it and get what I charge. Proving the point that good service has a cost and it ain't always the cheapest around although it can be if there are not call backs / returns and free loaners while your equipment is on the bench.

Competition isn't all about who has the cheaper price. Maybe it is to you as you apparently do not have a very good dealer experience. You are the type of lco I aim to please and gain as a customer. It is good that you at least recognize the service you have been getting as substandard. I hope you did not pay much for what you did get.

When it comes to service I don't care to pay more to get it fixed right.

sawman65
07-14-2006, 10:02 AM
In the beginning I was kinda supportive of dealers, the longer this goes, the less I care about you. I buy my pickups, trailers, tools, pay taxes, and lots of other odds and ends. All part of doing what I love to do. You see, dealers are not the only ones to have expenses in order to stay in business. I cater to my better customers some, it only makes good business sense. Don't bore us with your costs trying to make us feel sorry for you, it won't hold water here.

you have it wrong you should not feel sorry for us, you just made my point to the "t" with your last post just put dealer where you say "I" and you have it in a nutshell.i look at it like this its just the cost of doing this for a living, if you want the good service and the advice that some dealers have be ready to pay for it.

Audrey
07-14-2006, 11:20 AM
audry i am glad you have a good shop to fix the things that you cant fix yourself. but what about updates.recalls and the like you could be missing out
and then there is warranty do you pay to have that done?

Sawman- Warranty work will still be done by a dealer somewhere. I would be a fool to pay for that if it's covered. For the next two years I will simply take the machine to a 3rd dealer somewhere else. There's six in my area.
As it gets closer to the end of the two years, I will do some legwork as to updates and recalls. After that, it's on me to keep up. The same as any other commodity I may own.

I'm not crazy, even though I act like it. :laugh:
If I find another dealer that does decent work at or near the same price an independent does, I'll go there. I am simply taking the position now that I will not be loyal to anyone except my wallet. The building of that bond of trust between dealer and LCO will not exist with me. I'll pay as I go and shop for price, wherever that may be.
I will also change how I do things. I will take more initiative and try to fix more things on my own. It's just a lawn mower, not the space shuttle.

A

newz7151
07-14-2006, 12:30 PM
It's just a lawn mower, not the space shuttle.

A


And thank goodness too. You'd have to worry about pieces falling off your mower every time you filled the tanks with gas and moved it an inch.

tallimeca
07-14-2006, 02:35 PM
honestly,

I posted this just to see the feedback I would get. As I expected, there are the the guys who generated positive input, and there are alot of you that seem to have a complex about what you do for a living like you are looked down apon. If you feel that way, take the chip off your shoulder and find a new profession. How is it that a landscaper crawling around in the dirt is any different from an OPE tech crawling around on the shop floor. There's no glory in either situation, just a paycheck and an honest living.

Some of you guys have obviously had bad experiences which have left you with a sour taste in your mouth, but you carry it with you to any dealer you visit obviously, so it's no wonder you don't get good service.

As far as dealer complaining about what they make, and it won't hold water here.......jesus guy, you need to talk to someone.

The gentleman who posted about a reality check, hit it on the head. It seems like alot of you want and expect discounts from dealers and if you don't get it, you'll go somewhere else. Dealer base discounts just like you do. If you do alot of buisness, they'll take care of you. If you bounce from one place, to another, to another.....don't expect anything in return, because you are not building anykind of buisness relationship with anyone, and chances are, you will end up hurting your bottom line in the long run.

I think it's a riot how some of you make it a point to post about how dealers are idiots and don't know what they are doing, but then you turn around and talk about how you just a measley LCO and you get no respect. Nice.

By the way, most dealer offer both aftermarket and oem parts. If you choose to buy the aftermarket to save money, or order your filters online for 99 cents, remember......guess who makes the call when your motor pukes and you want it warrantied? You want to buy aftermarket filters....I'll sell them to you. If your motor pukes......sure, you had OEM filters on there. You come in the shop, never buy anything from me, trailor full of equipment from dealers all over the area, and you threw a rod on your Kohler and it's under warranty. Start bitching what a piece of crap this machine is and Kohler sucks, and yada yada yada. What you will here is "Sorry Sir, I can not cover this, you are not using their filters as required by warranty".

Same scenario, but everything came from your dealer, even your aftermarket parts to save you a few bucks. Problem fixed, no questions asked.

Good luck to some of you. You need it real bad. For the others, thanks for having faith in us dealers. Just understand, that like you, we are not hear for a hobby.

dvmcmrhp52
07-14-2006, 07:30 PM
honestly,

I posted this just to see the feedback I would get. As I expected, there are the the guys who generated positive input, and there are alot of you that seem to have a complex about what you do for a living like you are looked down apon. If you feel that way, take the chip off your shoulder and find a new profession. How is it that a landscaper crawling around in the dirt is any different from an OPE tech crawling around on the shop floor. There's no glory in either situation, just a paycheck and an honest living.

Some of you guys have obviously had bad experiences which have left you with a sour taste in your mouth, but you carry it with you to any dealer you visit obviously, so it's no wonder you don't get good service.

As far as dealer complaining about what they make, and it won't hold water here.......jesus guy, you need to talk to someone.

The gentleman who posted about a reality check, hit it on the head. It seems like alot of you want and expect discounts from dealers and if you don't get it, you'll go somewhere else. Dealer base discounts just like you do. If you do alot of buisness, they'll take care of you. If you bounce from one place, to another, to another.....don't expect anything in return, because you are not building anykind of buisness relationship with anyone, and chances are, you will end up hurting your bottom line in the long run.

I think it's a riot how some of you make it a point to post about how dealers are idiots and don't know what they are doing, but then you turn around and talk about how you just a measley LCO and you get no respect. Nice.

By the way, most dealer offer both aftermarket and oem parts. If you choose to buy the aftermarket to save money, or order your filters online for 99 cents, remember......guess who makes the call when your motor pukes and you want it warrantied? You want to buy aftermarket filters....I'll sell them to you. If your motor pukes......sure, you had OEM filters on there. You come in the shop, never buy anything from me, trailor full of equipment from dealers all over the area, and you threw a rod on your Kohler and it's under warranty. Start bitching what a piece of crap this machine is and Kohler sucks, and yada yada yada. What you will here is "Sorry Sir, I can not cover this, you are not using their filters as required by warranty".

Same scenario, but everything came from your dealer, even your aftermarket parts to save you a few bucks. Problem fixed, no questions asked.

Good luck to some of you. You need it real bad. For the others, thanks for having faith in us dealers. Just understand, that like you, we are not hear for a hobby.




All very amusing from a dealer who touts wonderful service yet had no idea what the issues are with the Triton deck. (no, the Kohler engine was not the problem)

It ain't about luck sir, it's about knowing the difference between having smoke blown up an orifice and reality.

Our balance sheets show reality................

Luvs2Play
07-14-2006, 08:59 PM
Are you happy you asked for this? If nothing else, you have found what the majority of LCO's feel about dealers. I guess that maybe one bad apple does spoil the whole bunch in more opinions than just mine. We're all here trying to make a living, just in different ways. Maybe we should each take a little of this and try to change it so things work a little better between dealers and LCO's (got that from talking to someone), As far as dealer support, I have had good and bad, the bad is only hurting himself. I have been doing this for 30+ years now, and will keep doing it as I have been able to overcome the bad. You did ask for feedback, you got it. Sorry you take it so personally. Maybe you can be the one to change that! Good luck.

sawman65
07-14-2006, 09:26 PM
Hi, my name is Dave. I live in the southern part of Nebraska (between Colorado and Iowa), west of the populated area of the state. I have been on the site watching for quite a while, lots of info and just plain learning what goes on in the rest of the country. I have been in business here for seven years. Prior to that I worked with another service off and on since the early 70's. We currently run two crews full time and one part time tree man. I started out this time with sixteen accounts, one push mower, one Dixon 50", and working a full time graveyard. After two years we had to give up our laid back 40 hour jobs and devote all our time to the lawn business. No regrets! I hope to maybe put a smile on faces once in a while, as I try not to take things as serious as allot of people. Besides, if it's not fun, why waste your time with it?


i wasted the time to look at what you say i see a lot of dealer bashing and crying dont take this personal but go cut some weeds its people like you that give lco's a bad rap

tacoma200
07-14-2006, 09:36 PM
All very amusing from a dealer who touts wonderful service yet had no idea what the issues are with the Triton deck. (no, the Kohler engine was not the problem)

It ain't about luck sir, it's about knowing the difference between having smoke blown up an orifice and reality.

Our balance sheets show reality................
A dealer that is not familiar with the Triton deck problems throw's up a red flag for me. Just like the Hustler dealer that didn't know much about the XR7 decks that I visited. I had to go to another dealer that was much more knowlegeable. If he doesn't know about the Triton problem how would his well trained mechanical staff know? How are you going to get service after the sale if the dealer is not up on issues with his own product. Heck all the other dealers know about the Trition problems exept the Exmark dealers. I'm not knocking Exmark, I love mine and I think they will get the problems fixed. Like I said I find that sometimes the best dealers, with the best customer service often have the lowest prices also because they move alot of volume. He asked what we thought but didn't like the answers. I have saved enough off factory suggested retail prices on my last 3 ZTR's to buy another one.

Luvs2Play
07-14-2006, 10:17 PM
i wasted the time to look at what you say i see a lot of dealer bashing and crying dont take this personal but go cut some weeds its people like you that give lco's a bad rap

You must be the only dealer in the area, good for you. I just don't think that I would do any business with you solely because you seem to think we can't do our work without you. That is not true. Like I said before, we but 5 every two years and that number will probably go up as we are openning in another city next spring. I guess if giving a good service and keeping customers very satisfied gives LCO's a bad rap, then I'm guilty as charged, and proud of it! Good luck to you sir. The people have spoken!

sawman65
07-14-2006, 10:43 PM
i dont understad that post play. and i do know the problems with the exmark deck tacoma, he was talking about the other guy and i am sure they will get it fixed. but me and exmark parted ways at the start of this year. they cost to much.... for all involved
any way i feel for the dealers who are just starting out in this biz. with the way some of ya'll talk its a lose lose deal

dvmcmrhp52
07-14-2006, 10:53 PM
i dont understad that post play. and i do know the problems with the exmark deck tacoma, he was talking about the other guy and i am sure they will get it fixed. but me and exmark parted ways at the start of this year. they cost to much.... for all involved
any way i feel for the dealers who are just starting out in this biz. with the way some of ya'll talk its a lose lose deal




No sir it is not a lose lose deal..............if the new dealerships change their attitudes towards the people that are buttering their bread.

I am not implying that all dealers are bad, however the other dealer posting here just don't get it.
Times have changed and old methods of doing business need to go in order to survive. It's no different on this side of the keyboard either.

tacoma200
07-14-2006, 11:17 PM
i dont understad that post play. and i do know the problems with the exmark deck tacoma, he was talking about the other guy and i am sure they will get it fixed. but me and exmark parted ways at the start of this year. they cost to much.... for all involved
any way i feel for the dealers who are just starting out in this biz. with the way some of ya'll talk its a lose lose deal
There are so many post and quotes I've lost track of who said what. Sorry if I offended you. I think I was just agreeing with those that were stating that if a dealer had higher prices and based them on customer support, and service but wasn't aware of issues with mowers the was selling that that didn't make sense. I can't find any of your post that I have a problems with. I think this discussion has helped dealers understand the very complex issues that make a LCO buy from one dealer over the next. I can have these discussions with out taking them personally and think talking about such things helps both sides. The customer understands the dealers point of view and visa versa. Contrary to how I may sound I always buy local and use OEM parts. I may use another dealers lower price to help me get a better deal but buy local if they are anywhere close to the same price. Dealer support is very important (and rare these days). As an exmample I found a dealer in Tennessee that offered me a Lazer for around $8000 and my Local dealer had it marked closer to $9000 on sale. I told him about the price I found in Tennessee and he came down to $8,200 and thanked me for my business. Now I was glad to buy local and have established a relationship with the dealer. I may buy a oil filter, or somthing like that somewhere else but if I need any major repair he will get my business and I will use OEM parts. Same on my new Hustler. Saved several hundred dollars by telling him of the lowest price I found. He was willing without hard feeling to match the deal and even brought it too me. He said most of his repairs are on a 24 hr turn around so once again I'm glad to buy local. My Dad was a car salesman and I can't help my self from bargining. It's in my blood. I know how the car sales system works and use the same tactics on mowers etc. So far I have always ended up buying and getting my service locally even if it wasn't the lowest price. And if you will fix something of mine and do it right, I don't care to pay. So many mechanics seem to have the deer in the headlight look when you tell them of a problem. I have enjoyed all the conversations on this matter and learned alot from all the opinions. Sorry I'm so blunt sometimes. It's not helping anyone though if I don't give an honest reply or opinion just to be the nice guy. Thanks everyone on Lawnsite. Your opinions and debates have helped me so much in making my decisions. Tacoma

dvmcmrhp52
07-14-2006, 11:45 PM
Do you know what a preseason, or spring order is?

If not, it's what the manufacturer distributors call the rip that they put to dealers every year that more or less forces dealers to pre order substantial $$$$ amounts of products/parts from the distributors in order to get the priveledge of remaining factory authorized dealers.

Unless you've done what some of the other dealers that lurk on LS have done and gone from mowing to opening and operating a legitimate dealership, you have no idea what some dealers have to put up with just to retain their "authorized dealer" status. So.. stick with your profession, and go out and cut some more weeds.



So a dealer needs "up front" money to begin the season?
How is this any different ?
On our side, real money doesn't start coming in until May, does this operating capital for the prior months come from the trees out back?

newz7151
07-14-2006, 11:58 PM
So a dealer needs "up front" money to begin the season?
How is this any different ?
On our side, real money doesn't start coming in until May, does this operating capital for the prior months come from the trees out back?


You've got why I posted that wrong. I posted that in response to somebody that was saying dealers should go out to a local store, buy a non OEM part and mark it up a couple bucks and sell it in their dealership. My post was stating that sometimes, a dealer can't help but end up with a bunch of more expensive OEM parts due to the spring order process with 95% of engine/equipment manufacturer distributors.

dvmcmrhp52
07-15-2006, 12:01 AM
You've got why I posted that wrong. I posted that in response to somebody that was saying dealers should go out to a local store, buy a non OEM part and mark it up a couple bucks and sell it in their dealership. My post was stating that sometimes, a dealer can't help but end up with a bunch of more expensive OEM parts due to the spring order process with 95% of engine/equipment manufacturer distributors.




O.K.:)
....................

Audrey
07-15-2006, 01:06 AM
any way i feel for the dealers who are just starting out in this biz. with the way some of ya'll talk its a lose lose deal

It doesn't necessarily have to be. It's all how he looks at it.

If he cops an attitude about the privilege of working on customer's machines, he can go the way of the buggy whip for all I care. So what if a guy bought his widget somewhere else. For some reason, you as the dealer weren't the most feasible choice at the time of the LCO's purchase of the machine. Maybe you weren't the least expensive. Maybe someone else threw some accessories or parts in to sweeten the deal. Maybe 0% financing was obtained elsewhere. Maybe he got a hooker for a night as a perk. It doesn't matter. For some reason, you as the dealer lost the sale of a new widget. Figure out WHY, and proceed from there. If you choose to stick to your guns and stay your course touting everything but price, that's fine. No problem. But just understand that the world is changing around you, and the amount of guys willing to stay the course of "being taken care of later" will continue to diminish. Yes, it is a shame. No argument here. But that's how it is, and that mindset, however twisted it may seem, is becoming more prevalent every day. If it was 1906 this topic wouldn't even be discussed. But it's not and this is how the world is. It's just business. Keep up, or fade away. It really doesn't matter. There will be, without a doubt, someone to step in and fill the void to provide whatever service the market is demanding at the time. If the specific dealer type we are debating here is still around, great! :) If not, well, he didn't keep up and change with his customers spending habits. Whatever direction that may take this industry.....

If I can take MY machine in to a dealer and not feel an indignant attitude about where I purchased it, I MAY give him the privilege of working on it. However, if I see the attitude, and I know darn well that I will, I will have lost whatever semblance of compassion I may have had for how much the dealer has to spend on training, education, insurance, distributor pressures, etc... You're PO'D, and you're out for payback. Do you really think I'm going to give you the opportunity to hose me in some form? For something that wasn't my fault to begin with?? :laugh: Guess again!

It was you, as the dealer, that didn't do something right to earn the sale of that widget. Not all of us who didn't buy from you are insane or merely cheap. What could you have done differently to earn that sale you missed? Instead of making, I dunno... that.... $800 you just HAD to have to keep the lights lit, .......if the alternative meant making zero dollars couldn't you reduce the profit to $500 and at least get something as opposed to nothing? How do you keep the lights lit making ZERO dollars? Pride??
You would have still moved one, you still made some cash, and you have a happy customer who will now be more inclined (or continue) to spend cash on subsequent purchases in your shop?

Instead of whining about costs, why not move some units and make some cash? The more you move, the better you can buy, the cheaper you sell them for, the more you can move, etc...

If your techs are sharp and they fix things on the first try most of the time (in short order), you will get the service work. I have no doubt that the market will prove that if you do great work (sans attitude), your appointment book will be full. Or, keep the attitude, and see your former customers go elsewhere.

I would think that if an LCO thought enough of your service department to trust you with the machine that feeds his kids, you as a dealer would at least have the courtesy to appreciate it. It's a rare case that you're the only dealer in town. He CAN go elsewhere. He's trying to choose YOU. It's not the LCO's fault that you as the dealer can't compete for whatever reason with the next guy in sales.

A

Palmer'sLS
07-15-2006, 01:31 AM
It doesn't necessarily have to be. It's all how he looks at it.


It was you, as the dealer, that didn't do something right to earn the sale of that widget. Not all of us who didn't buy from you are insane or merely cheap. What could you have done differently to earn that sale you missed? Instead of making, I dunno... that.... $800 you just HAD to have to keep the lights lit, .......if the alternative meant making zero dollars couldn't you reduce the profit to $500 and at least get something as opposed to nothing? How do you keep the lights lit making ZERO dollars? Pride??
You would have still moved one, you still made some cash, and you have a happy customer who will now be more inclined (or continue) to spend cash on subsequent purchases in your shop?

Instead of whining about costs, why not move some units and make some cash? The more you move, the better you can buy, the cheaper you sell them for, the more you can move, etc...

If your techs are sharp and they fix things on the first try most of the time (in short order), you will get the service work. I have no doubt that the market will prove that if you do great work (sans attitude), your appointment book will be full. Or, keep the attitude, and see your former customers go elsewhere.

I would think that if an LCO thought enough of your service department to trust you with the machine that feeds his kids, you as a dealer would at least have the courtesy to appreciate it. It's a rare case that you're the only dealer in town. He CAN go elsewhere. He's trying to choose YOU. It's not the LCO's fault that you as the dealer can't compete for whatever reason with the next guy in sales.

A

wow....exactly right my man

sawman65
07-15-2006, 07:17 AM
audrey i agree 100%. and no i am not the only one in town.i never cop a atitude on someone.but in years past we have sold so many mowers i have more than enough next day jobs those are the ones i try to get out first.there are exceptions of course if you buy a belt and i can put it on wile its on the trailer no problem.if i have to pull it off and do the paperwork it goes to the end of the line.i run two files in my service program those that bought it here and those that did not.and if was bought at the big box stores you can take it back to them i wont even look at it.if you got it frm me and i can not have it out in 24 hr i will, if its under warranty give you something to mow with.if it is not a warranty unit i will rent one to you at a reduced price
that seems to make most people happy

AAELI
07-15-2006, 07:25 AM
I not only get it I work it hard! Still working both sides of the counter. My customers don't chose my equipment because it is the cheapest nor do my lawn contracts get performed at a low price. My point is that if you demand excellence in your own job and deliver why compromise on getting paid for the effort?

I don't care what you did the lawn for last year, I still charge more and get paid more. When will you understand that not everyone has such a narrow view of money and what you can get for it? I was taught that I was to put my hands to work honestly wether it was as a lawn monkey, now 42 yrs at it, or as a wrench jockey, almost the same amount of time.

I also look for a good deal and do not begrudge the LCO doing the same. But do not expect me to compromise standards of compensation for the simple pleasure of serving you. That is what the guy down the street does to get your money.. Don't think that you can beat me up on price to buy what I sell. If you do not want it at the price I clearly mark on it then fine. I appreciate your stopping by and maybe in the future we may be able to talk business again. I just have no intention of going out of business faster by selling at a substandard margin at a higher volume.

There is a limit on what the market can bear on pricing and I admit I push it hard. People return for honest treatment and get it no matter where they bought their equipment. I repair a lot of salvage yard deals for customers. I buy equipment from military salvage yards and resell after refurbishing.

It is good for you to look for deals if that is where your margin as an lco is. Nothing wrong with it. I started as a dealer because I encountered the same problems with equipment you seem to have come across. Overpriced, under informed dealers. I made the effort to provide what the others did not but at a higher price.

Reality here is if the price is high, then it may be because of better quality. It isn't always the case but more often than not you do get what you pay for. In your case it is clear you do not intend to pay any more than you absolutely have to pay. I agree in all points to that statement for I am the same.

I repair the LCO's equipment no matter how he treats me. He may go to the front of the line in order to get back to making a living for the small price of a six pack of coke, NOT DIET. Around here the word is 'chenchule' , a form of you pat my back and I pat yours. From the posts here it is obvious that many lco's wouldn't make the effort to please their customers the way they expect us to please them..

I also don't need the attitude from the lco thinking he is God's gift to me the dealer. I just might make his business mine in a hurry. I can assist you or I can send you down the street just like you threaten to do to me .. I can also bid on your jobs and most likely get them as my cost is less than yours. I just don't find it necessary to get into a peeing contest with every lco who has a chip on his shoulder from getting treated poorly by another dealer. I will help you if you want, even offer free advice based on my experience.

Someday you may just find the one dealer you will support. But don't worry he isn't holding his breath waiting for you.

Roger
07-15-2006, 07:35 AM
.......
From the posts here it is obvious that many lco's wouldn't make the effort to please their customers the way they expect us to please them..

.......

So true!!!

TLS
07-15-2006, 09:36 AM
By the way, most dealer offer both aftermarket and oem parts. If you choose to buy the aftermarket to save money, or order your filters online for 99 cents, remember......guess who makes the call when your motor pukes and you want it warrantied? You want to buy aftermarket filters....I'll sell them to you. If your motor pukes......sure, you had OEM filters on there. You come in the shop, never buy anything from me, trailor full of equipment from dealers all over the area, and you threw a rod on your Kohler and it's under warranty. Start bitching what a piece of crap this machine is and Kohler sucks, and yada yada yada. What you will here is "Sorry Sir, I can not cover this, you are not using their filters as required by warranty".



This is illegal. If they require THEIR brand filters, they have to supply them free of charge.

newz7151
07-15-2006, 11:04 AM
This is illegal. If they require THEIR brand filters, they have to supply them free of charge.

If a failure can be traced back to a non OEM or recommended part, then a manufacturer has every right to deny a warranty claim.

Palmer'sLS
07-15-2006, 01:10 PM
This is illegal. If they require THEIR brand filters, they have to supply them free of charge.


i had this debate with ford....fact is....if the MANUFACTURER REQUIRES their brand filter...they do in deed have to supply the filter free of charge...

sawman65
07-15-2006, 09:09 PM
Someday you may just find the one dealer you will support. But don't worry he isn't holding his breath waiting for you.
i could not have said it better myself thanx.

dvmcmrhp52
07-17-2006, 06:20 PM
I also don't need the attitude from the lco thinking he is God's gift to me the dealer. I just might make his business mine in a hurry. I can assist you or I can send you down the street just like you threaten to do to me .. I can also bid on your jobs and most likely get them as my cost is less than yours.

.





And here ya go with your attitude again............

Maybe I will open a dealership right next to yours and put YOU out of business.
Apparently you still don't quite understand that some folks on here aren't just
"lawn monkeys" as you like to call it. Maybe YOU should consider the fact that there are some real businesses being run by people who really don't need the attitude.

Go ahead, try to under price me..............You wouldn't be the first to lose.

Enough of the childish "my business is better than yours" crap, dealers have a bad reputation for a reason. PERIOD. whether your ego allows it to sink in enough or not is up to you.

mowerman1
08-10-2006, 09:35 PM
Here is a very blunt statement based on facts: I have been a(BIG) dealer for over 20 years. A dealer rarely gets over 25% off of RETAIL on equipment. I have never seen a program giving a dealer 30% or more. The suggested promo prices are usually 10% off. Thus a $3000 mower usually has around $450 in gross profit.($3000 x 15%) Then take off for set up, financing, sales time. oil and gas etc. That is why your older more successful dealers sell closer to RETAIL. Retail offends some people. Those dealers who do not sell for close to it usually go under in a few years.

Answer this question: Do you pay your mower shop bill every month? If you don't(AND MOST OF YOU DON"T) ask yourself if paying the dealer RETAIL was the reason! I don't think so, the price you pay a dealer has such little bearing on your business. If you people that spend all day shopping to save $100 bucks would spend your time learning how to run a business you would not worry about a 10% swing in your equipment cost. This is why a good dealer ignores you or could care less if you buy or not. You spend $5000 a year on average which might add up to $750 net profit and I have to carry a $500 balance each month to do business with you.

How much net profit did you make from each of your accounts today? Those of you who complain about the price at your dealership can not answer that question!

AAELI
08-11-2006, 06:50 AM
And here ya go with your attitude again............

Maybe I will open a dealership right next to yours and put YOU out of business.
Apparently you still don't quite understand that some folks on here aren't just
"lawn monkeys" as you like to call it. Maybe YOU should consider the fact that there are some real businesses being run by people who really don't need the attitude.

Go ahead, try to under price me..............You wouldn't be the first to lose.

Enough of the childish "my business is better than yours" crap, dealers have a bad reputation for a reason. PERIOD. whether your ego allows it to sink in enough or not is up to you.

Attitude?? I would venture to say "earned pride". And yes I have an ego to match.

I would welcome the advent of your arrival! My dealership has earned its good reputation by treating each customer as I would like to be treated. It is clear from your posts that you don't get that type of treatment where you are at which prompted my statement "OPEN YOUR OWN".

I am not just a lawn monkey either although I did refer to myself as such in my post. I run a real business with over 24 years of grounds maintenance contracting on military bases here. I have contracted grounds maintenance with the federal gov't that at our peak maintained 4500 acres a month. Mowing, pest control, fert, hedges, tree removal, landscape installation etc.

Doing this along with running a top notch dealership qualifies me with the term you use "BUSINESSMAN". Your attitude of trying to put down others who don't share your disdain for the dealers you so clearly knock is childish.

I have seen many a lco with your attitude fall by the wayside out here.

I already said in an earlier post that you are welcome to open your own dealership where you live to better serve your area. But by all means if you are ready to take the dive out here then start walkin' instead of talkin'.

I earned the title businessman long ago, how about you?