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Vauxhall Meriva purchased by Mrs Bruce Jones

"I started vaguely looking for cars a few weeks ago thinking that it might be a good time to change car rather than wait, but was certainly in no hurry.

I went to a number of garages; at Renault (where as a family we have bought and had serviced all of our cars over the last 15+ years) I did not feel that the salesperson (although very charming and friendly) was being proactive enough: I looked around the forecourt for nearly 20 minutes before eventually going in and asking for help (Holy Moley!!! What a blooper!) but even when I explained my position and requirements (deliberately vague) there was no feeling of showing and "selling" me options. I was standing there with him and nothing was being said, so I went away without any ideas (I even went back the next week having done my own research on the Bristol Street website (!), but still came away without any feeling of them really wanting to do a deal with me and close the sale or feel that they were actively looking for something for me.)

I also went to the garage just up from Hendy (can't remember its name); there the salesperson was much more helpful and took me round to look at a couple of cars but then said that he probably didn't have something to exactly match and took my details to contact me should anything come in. I have not heard a dicky-bird since then. Again, it's not rocket science: even if nothing has come in, when you have a customer wanting to buy from you, you go out and look (e.g. on websites) or at the very least contact me to say we really want to find something for you - please bear with us: we want your custom!!

Then I came to Hendy simply because it was right next door. Well, what a difference. Steve Dilley immediately established my needs and priorities and took me to see a number of cars and talked about them in terms of what I had said and gave me all the benefits plus the pros and cons of each one; this was done in a friendly but business-like way: I felt that I was wasting no time but that I wasn't being rushed. He then suggested we came inside and gave me a cup of tea while giving me more information and answering my questions. I then went away to mull over the information. The email from him/Hendy was a very nice touch - it showed you wanted my business. I then came back to test drive my short-listed cars and chatted about the benefits of each of them and made a decision.

I also got a good deal (that is part of what I was looking for and I felt that Steve realised that and worked with it, rather than Renault that didn't hear my buying signals: I might so easily have spent a lot of money with them (including, as before, all follow-up servicing and MoTs)had they given signals that we might be able to talk about a deal e.g. "I understand that this car has a higher mileage than you were looking for, but if we can come down on the price, would you be interested?".) and subsequently bought the Diamond coating because I felt I had got a decent deal on the price of the car/part  exchange.

Jo then took over when I came to collect the car. She is a real gem. So, overall, pretty exemplary customer care from Steve and Jo and an example of how you get business - not just on one day but in the future.

I would love my experience to be made into a training film! It shows that "selling" is not about hard sales but about efficiency, listening, understanding that you have an opportunity every time a customer comes on your forecourt and that it is so easy for a potential customer to go elsewhere if they feel that they are not actively wanted and that a customer wants to be guided, not just left to wander around a forecourt. Well done Hendy!"