motorcycle salesmen—is it just ME??

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by sshbsn, Aug 1, 2019.

  1. sshbsn

    sshbsn Been here awhile

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    ive been thinking of adding a more sport oriented bike (curse you z900rs cafe for your good looks and siren song!) ive actually looked at many different brands, located at several different dealerships.

    each time, it would have been VERY easy to put me on a bike—theres a lot out there to buy! but each time, i left without a purchase. thats just how annoying i found the salesmen.

    am i just a cranky old geezer now?
    anybody else notice this phenomenon?
    should i just get a grand marquis and move to a 55+ community???
    #1
  2. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    They're mostly kids - or guys who've hit a hard patch. Selling motorcycles today, is about as likely to lead to success as selling Amway. Riding just isn't in fashion at this point; and many of these dealers, and their sales teams, are circling the bowl.

    Many of them are annoying. Some of them don't know product; many more don't have a gift for people.

    But in the end....it's the bike you're buying. The sales dood is just an annoyance, like a junkyard dog you have to step around. He can answer specific questions, such as, Test-Ride (Y/N) or Financing (Interest, down-payment, finance company) or Other Charges.

    Questions about the actual bike, are best left to the Internet. I've found, when I'm shopping a model, I know more about it than the guy trying to sell it to me.

    You find the place has a sales-dweeb, and you're ready to pull the trigger...lowball him. He may be desperate enough to push it through the Sales Manager. He gets a sale but little money, and you get what you came to buy - and that hassle is over.
    #2
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  3. Racerrrx

    Racerrrx Long timer

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    yes,yes,and yes

    you probably know more about the inventory than they do- are they actively preventing you from buying somehow???
    #3
  4. OConnor

    OConnor Bad juju

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    My wife always asks me why I know more about their bikes than they do. I tell her I'm an enthusiast but for them it's just a paycheck quite often.
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  5. Geoff

    Geoff Long timer

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    I once sold Harleys when I was between corporate jobs. I used a consultative approach and listened to customers before attempting to sell them anything. Other salesmen I worked with were pushy and didn't do so well. They'd go for a close before the customer was ready. Problem is, some dealers hire sales people because they know bikes, while their interpersonal and selling skills were poor.
    #5
  6. sshbsn

    sshbsn Been here awhile

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    i actually emailed the manager of a local european dealer, explaining that its ugly to make yourself look taller by pushing others down, and this principle applies to motorcycle sales as well.

    i think, if i buy, it will be at a place where they leave me alone except to give one word answers to specific questions!
    #6
  7. VicRattlehead

    VicRattlehead Been here awhile

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    I'm not 'old' (a hair under 40) and I too find salesmen to be extremely annoying. I resent the very idea of being 'sold' on anything, like I'm some kind of mush-brained idiot who needs someone to tell me how to spend my money.

    That being said, I seldom base my decision to buy on how obnoxious the salesman is, so long as they're not disrespectful.
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  8. Billy52

    Billy52 Adventurer

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    In the Los Angeles/Ventura area, I have had no bad experiences at MC dealers, and some great shopping and buying experiences for MCs. Mostly the same with cars, with one notable shopping exception.
    #8
  9. vince82

    vince82 Been here awhile

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    Over my whole life, every single sales person I have ever talked with for cars or motorcycle, with maybe a couple exceptions in total, left me the impression that it's a job made entirely of the worse example of humanity.
    People that would sell their mother's soul for an appearance in reality TV and 6-pack of the worst beer.
    Absolutely abismal, I have no idea how they manage to be this terrible.
    I wouldn't be able to hire such idiots is I wanted.
    #9
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  10. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    Good salesmen, with track records, don't want to do it. It's probably a soul-killing job...selling expensive hardware to people who can't use it, don't fit it, or cannot afford it. Some mix of those, or all of those.

    Compare that to selling autos. That, too, is soul-crushing - from what I've read from former car salesmen - but not a tenth of the self-hatred generation, of selling some person a two-wheeled vehicle he's not equipped to ride, that you KNOW he's going to kill himself on.
    #10
  11. Subito

    Subito Been here awhile

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    I just bought a new Triumph Street Triple R from Team Power Center in Janesville, WI in large part because I like the dealership so much. It’s a family-owned business and they treat their customers like fellow riders, not sales prospects. I honestly don’t think I would have bought a new bike at all if it had to be from one of the other dealers in the area, they’re too corporate and aggressive for my taste.
    #11
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  12. st3ryder

    st3ryder Been here awhile

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    "The buyer is the liar". That's just one expression I used to use to describe some of the slimy, stupid, underhanded, self-righteous "customers" who walked on to the lot or through the doors when I used to sell cars. "Wonk" was another one.

    If any of you want to bad mouth sales people, try doing the job for a while yourselves, and get back to us. Some customers can be sickening.

    I'm a far better buyer than most, because I don't try to dick any salesperson around like some of you think is the "norm".

    Good will negotiations are the best way to go. Try it sometime. ;-)
    #12
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  13. sshbsn

    sshbsn Been here awhile

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    st3ryder, i hope you didnt trash talk every vehicle NOT for sale on your lot the way they do down here.
    #13
  14. Drop_Center

    Drop_Center Long timer

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    I recently got stood up for a test ride appointment by a salesman I had recently purchased from. Someone else let me ride it but afterwards I just went home. He never called to apologize or even try to sell me the bike.
    #14
  15. Drop_Center

    Drop_Center Long timer

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    Ducati has their shit together on this though, their salesmen are given all kinds of resources and information to help them sell bikes. You can tell when you're shopping for one.
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  16. Hammerdown77

    Hammerdown77 Long timer

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    Oooh, so it was one of those. I HATE that. That will send me out the door every time, never to return.

    First Victory dealer in this area did that. It's like, "Dude, come on, sell me on the merits of your product, not the fact that it's not a Harley."
    Hell, I even got that at the Victory/Indian demos as well. Likely I'll never buy a Polaris product because of that, just left a bad taste in my mouth for the whole brand.

    But to be fair....Yamaha reps did that crap too when they were talking to a group of us at the local shop about the soon to be released Venture. Harley bashing was 80% of the sales pitch. JUST TELL ME ABOUT THE G*DDAMN BIKE
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  17. Bultaco206

    Bultaco206 Back-to-back motos suck Supporter

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    Most of the mid-size, and large mega dealerships, have fallen for the automotive dealership approach over the course of the last 10 years. Also worth mentioning is a good number of the large mega dealerships have been bought-up by car dealership groups. I’m in Powersports dealerships daily for my job and have seen that phenomenon occur first-hand. While it may not be an attractive way to do business to the older hardcore rider, it does work. My most successful customers are the types of places that the older established riders don’t care for. And the ones I see struggling are the ones still doing things like it’s 1979. Can’t say I like it. But it’s a fact. (I, myself, am an ‘old codger.’ I used to race Bultacos as a punk kid back in the day for a dealership that was located in an old house. :photog)

    HD, BMW, and most of the Euro brands, have solid dealer training programs. They’re after the customer experience. The Japanese brands just want as many units pumped into their dealers as they can get. So other than watching a few product videos, there is no real training, or business model. Which is why you’re seeing the car dealer mentality in Powersports dealerships as a thing right now.
    #17
  18. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer

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    I rode Beemers for the last 5 yrs. The sales experience was pain free.

    Just went orange. Not as good as beemer, but not bad.
    #18
  19. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer

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    Oh, and the Japanese bike sales experience? Awful.....
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  20. Electrical

    Electrical Been here awhile

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    Naw. You've reached the "age of awakening" and simply need to adjust your approach. At this age you're gifted with the ability to differentiate meaningful dialog from garbage pail gibberish. The visit to the dealer is a mission to be focused on and accomplished within your terms. I will gladly let any salesman believe they talked me into a sale if I get the bike I want at my price.


    I wonder what yardstick this statement is measured against. If a Harley yardstick; fair statement as Harley sales have been tanking for many years now. On the other hand BMW Motorrad have seen 8 consecutive years of record sales. KTM has also seen healthy growth lately.
    #20
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