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Car Salesperson Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: April 15, 2023

A Car Salesperson, or Auto Sales Representative, is responsible for selling cars, trucks and vans for personal and commercial use. Their duties include meeting with customers to discuss their needs, promoting sales offers at their dealership and participating in test drives with interested customers.

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Car Salesperson duties and responsibilities

Car salespeople are responsible for making customers feel welcome and supported through the car-purchasing process. The responsibilities of a car salesperson will vary depending on the size of their dealership, but usually include the following tasks:

  • Greet customers arriving at the dealership
  • Showcase the dealership’s vehicles and explain their features and warranties to customers
  • Answer customer questions about cars, financing and purchase process
  • Accompany customers on test drives, collecting licenses and documentation beforehand per best practices
  • Negotiate car prices and trade-in values for customers’ vehicles
  • Coordinate with the finance department to determine each customer’s financing and ownership options
  • Contact past customers to ensure they are satisfied with their vehicles
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Car Salesperson Job Description Examples

What does a Car Salesperson do?

A Car Salesperson typically works for a car dealership, helping customers find a vehicle that suits their driving needs and price range. They stay up-to-date on popular car models and perform test drives so they can accurately describe a vehicle’s capabilities to a customer. Their job is to use their sales skills and knowledge of cars to maintain vehicle sales at their dealership. They may also be responsible for issuing loan contracts between the buyer and the dealership.

Car Salesperson skills and qualifications

A Car Salesperson uses a variety of soft skills and industry knowledge to provide the most rewarding customer service experience they can. Common skills and qualifications for a Car Salesperson include:

  • Exceptional customer service skills, including interpersonal communication and rapport building
  • In-depth knowledge of the dealership’s vehicles, finance options and sales process
  • Intuition to anticipate which cars will appeal to different customers
  • Active listening to best determine a customer’s wants and needs
  • Persuasiveness to convince customers to make a purchase
  • Confidence to create a positive impression on customers
  • Negotiation skills to offer deals that satisfy customers while ensuring profit for the dealership
  • Organization and time management to handle many different customers, including past customers, at once
  • Teamwork and collaboration skills to coordinate sales with the financing department and/or other Salespeople
  • A welcoming and friendly demeanor
  • Knowledge and passion for vehicles

Car Salesperson salary expectations

No salary data could be found on Indeed Salaries.

Car Salesperson education and training requirements

Entry-level candidates are likely to have at least a high school diploma or GED, though some may have an associate or bachelor’s degree in business administration, marketing, communication or another related field. Those with completed undergraduate education may be suitable for leadership roles. In addition, some candidates may have a sales management certification from the National Automobile Dealers Association. Depending on the state, candidates could have or be working toward attaining a vehicle sales license.

Car Salesperson experience requirements

Entry-level candidates should have previous experience in customer service or sales and/or relevant education or training. These candidates can also complete a dealership’s on-the-job training program. Familiarity with the dealership’s vehicle types and brands is also necessary for this role. Candidates with more than 5 years of experience likely have keen sales abilities, familiarity with selling particular vehicles and a network of previous customers. For luxury or specialized dealerships, candidates should have previous sales experience, either with those vehicles, other vehicles or in other environments.

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Frequently asked questions about Car Salespeople

What is the difference between a Car Salesperson and an Automotive Product Specialist?

The main difference between a Car Salesperson and an Automotive Product Specialist is that a Car Salesperson tends to use more forward sales tactics to encourage customers to buy a vehicle. For example, a Car Salesperson may try to relate a car model to a family’s need for space and good gas mileage for road trips.

In contrast, Automotive Product Specialists don’t try to compare a vehicle to an individual’s needs. Instead, they provide a variety of factual information about the model like the type of engine, gas mileage, trim levels and payment options to help customers make their decision. Another way to view the difference between these two titles is that Car Salespeople look for a way to connect to the customer. At the same time, Automotive Product Specialists provide them with trivial information about a car model.

What are the daily duties of a Car Salesperson?

On an average day, a Car Salesperson occupies an office within a car dealership. They have meetings before or after business hours to discuss new sales quotas, incentives and the arrival of car shipments. Throughout the day, they greet customers and sit down with them to discuss the type of car they want, including the make, model and price range.

Using the information given to them, a Car Salesperson shows customers a selection of vehicles that fit their criteria. They also allow customers to test-drive vehicles. If a customer decides to purchase a vehicle, the Car Salesperson types and prints a bill of sale document and a title document for both parties to sign. They also offer warranties and additional packages during this stage.

What makes a good Car Salesperson?

A good Car Salesperson is an individual who exhibits excellent sales techniques to help customers through the buying process. They have an approachable, friendly personality that enables them to connect with people of all ages and backgrounds. A good Car Salesperson also understands social queues, which help them adjust their tactics to suit a customer’s personality better. They have excellent verbal communication skills to accurately describe car models and their benefits to customers. Further, a Car Salesperson should have a competitive nature that motivates them to meet and exceed dealership quotas.

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