Four Key VinSolutions CRM Reports That Drive Higher Sales   

Managing your retail automotive sales professionals is a role that takes leadership, experience, and especially in today’s shifting environment, fast, flexible, and pinpoint accurate data from your CRM. When it comes right down to it, the simple formula for selling more cars and being a profitable sales team is simple: leverage the data within your CRM; sell more cars.  

VinSolutions is backed by Cox Automotive’s powerful first-party data insights which help dealers reach more leads and set more appointments—which translates to more sales for you and your sales team. The data within your CRM can help you monitor specific KPIs and measure the metrics that lead to higher sales. So, we sat down with three of our top experts, Mario Scampoli, Sr. Performance Manager, Angie Miletich, Client Performance Manager, and Kevin Schmitt, Client Performance Manager for an in-depth, four-part round-table discussion to uncover the Metrics that Matter 

Read below to explore our experts’ shared tips, best practices, and the top four VinSolutions reports that help ensure your sales professionals are meeting targeted benchmarks and getting the coaching needed to thrive in today’s post-pandemic landscape.  

Tip: Accountability without a plan is just wishing that things will get better. Put it in writing, whether it’s for your salesperson team, leadership, or BDC. And make sure everyone signs it. 

The New Retail Automotive Mindset 

The past several years presented unique and unexpected challenges with low inventory and a rapid shift to online digitization, with a silver lining of record profits. But the market is shifting yet again, and more inventory and incentives means a more competitive environment. And, as a leader, you will be expected to help your sales team keep up! According to the most recent Car Buyer Journey Study from Cox Automotive, both car-buyers and inventory are back. When surveyed, a whopping 71% of respondents suggested they would be shopping with an omnichannel approach, which combines both online and in-person activity. 1 It’s more important than ever to take a look at the data from within your CRM and ensure your sales team is actively engaging leads, completing tasks, and communicating with customers before your competitors beat you to it. 

“It’s the math and science of the car business. Productivity equals contact equals appointments equals car deals.” – Mario Scampoli, Sr. Client Performance Manager 

Opt-In: Consistent and Diligent Data Capture Equal Success in Any Market 

In the PM Review: Metrics that Matter Round-table, our team of experts identified Contact Info Capture as one of four crucial VinSolutions reports to assess and improve dealership performance. Simply put, if your sales professionals aren’t opting customers in, you can’t communicate with them.  

To combat this potential loss, Client Performance Manager Angie Miletich recommends setting a benchmark for collecting crucial information such as email address and phone number. “I want to see 90% or above,” she explains. “I want to know that you are getting that customer contact information.” With lower capture of customer information, dealerships are selling less cars. Working one-on-one with your Performance Manager, you can customize this report to help identify and then coach underperforming team members. “I can promise you this, If the dealer has more emails and more texting opt-ins… they will sell more cars than they did previously,” explains Mario Scampoli, Sr. Client Performance Manager. “It’s the math and science of the car business. Productivity equals contact equals appointments equals car deals.”  

Tip: Set a Contact Info Capture Benchmark for email addresses, phone numbers and text opt ins. Without a benchmark, you simply can’t measure performance.  

It Starts with Connection 

Competition will ramp up as car buyers begin to return to the market again, this time incentivized with more options and greater availability. It’s up to you to coach your sales team on fundamentals like communications, appointment-setting, overcoming objections, etc. They need to know how to use timely, professional and effective communications to build connections with their customers.  As Client Performance Manager Kevin Schmitt explains, “If you’re there as a manager, the owner has entrusted you as a manager to take his business and move it along the right path to manage your store. And it starts with connecting with the customer.” Whether you’re a sales manager or a Dealer Principal, the Enterprise Performance Report is a great way to check the overall health score of how your store is performing. It offers core metrics on your communications, appointments, visits, sales, and more. With over 150 data points available to add to this report, your Performance Manager can work with your dealership to get the information needed to identify the metrics you need. “This is one of the best reports that we have in our tool that is very versatile for any manager…” explains Kevin. “This report helps you put (everything) back on track.” 

Tip: Schedule time with your Performance Manager to identify the data points specific and unique to your dealership to customize your dashboard. 

“Managers manage things and keep things in order. Leaders Change things.” – Kevin Schmitt, Client Performance Manager 

Minimum effort, minimum reward 

As a people leader, it’s up to you to inspect what you expect. It not only leads to higher profitability, as Angie Miletich explains, it can make or break the experience for potential customers. Most dealerships’ teams struggle with task completion. But good leaders will know that you don’t need to wait for a task to remind you to complete an action. As Angie points out, “Why are we (dealers) waiting until a ‘task’ pops up to talk to our active leads with engagement? Because if they’re talking to you, they’re talking to ABC Motors down the street.”  

The Team Performance Dashboard shows how well your team is addressing the responsibilities of sales: lead follow-up, effective communications, appointments, visits, demos, deals, and tasks. It makes it easy to understand your business, by the numbers.  

While displaying high-level dealership KPIs, this report lets you click into detail to understand what’s going on behind the data points. If it’s blue, it’s clickable to you. You can even click into the views of each salesperson and coach them on where to focus.  
Another helpful feature, the hot lead icon helps flags the most likely buyers, identified by your sales team. 

This dashboard helps you understand the output of your team and whether your headcount is enough to meet your business objectives. For example, it’s prudent to consider how many tasks are realistic to assign to salespeople, and where you want them to prioritize.  

“’Tasks’ are the minimum amount of effort a dealer should expect a salesperson to put into following up with a customer,” explains Mario. 

Dashboards and data insights like these grant managers the ability to step away from constant micromanaging and task-management and instead focus on coaching, training, and empowering teams to do better and level-up. “Managers manage things and keep things in order. Leaders Change things,” Kevin Schmitt, Client Performance Manager offers.  

Tip: Once per week have your sales team provide their ‘Top Ten List’ of with their best opportunities. The hot icon will flag customers to highlight the best opportunities for your sales team. 

“’Tasks’ are the minimum amount of effort a dealer should expect a salesperson to put into following up with a customer,” Mario 

Incentivize the Behavior You Wish to See 

Mario Scampoli and other Performance Managers developed the 10-Day Review Report, a custom VinSolutions report featured in the round-table to give managers an at-a-glance view of the status of your most current active sales opportunities.  

“Time kills car deals, right?” explains Mario. “So, this report gives you a one-stop shop to see everything that basically needs your attention.”  

Color coding (red-yellow-green) highlights who on your team is engaged with customers and who might be falling behind. This report serves as an important management tool to keep everyone on track before it’s too late. It can also be used to create an incentive structure that promotes customer follow-up. Some dealerships have a policy where any leads that fall out of ‘green’ status are up for grabs for the next salesperson that contacts them.  

Tip: Schedule time every day to stop working, stop managing and just walk the floor. Use this time to listen to how your sales professionals talk to customers. 

Mastering Your New Mindset 

The market conditions that existed during Covid produced abnormal sales dynamics. The demand for vehicles dramatically outpaced available inventory. Buyers waited months for vehicles. There was no need for the art and practice of selling. But conditions are very different now. As the panel in the Performance Manager Round-table explains, overcoming these issues today will take a new mindset to address them. Your contact percentage and your appointment percentage are clear indicators of how you’re communicating with your customers. It’s your job to come up with some way to change the culture from the Covid-mindset. Are you coaching your team on how to set appointments? Are they answering customer questions or just continuously asking for the customer to come in? Are they asking the right questions to get that customer into a test-drive? Do they know how to overcome objections? The average tenure of automotive sales professional is only one to two years, according to a recent survey.2 Based on this fact, you’re looking at an industry staffed by individuals who don’t remember (or who’ve never known) what the car-buying process looked like pre-Covid. “The salesperson who grew up in Covid doesn’t ask those questions,” explains Mario Scampoli. Your expertise, experience, and skills are more valuable than you know. It’s up to you to identify the areas of growth and potential for your sales team and coach them.  

Tip: If training is important to your dealership, make sure it becomes part of your onboarding process.  


Ready to learn more? Catch all four episodes of the PM Review: Metrics that Matter and discover best practices, practical tips and a greater deep dive into the top four VinSolutions reports that help ensure your sales professionals are meeting targeted benchmarks and getting the coaching needed to thrive in today’s post-pandemic landscape. Unlock My Insights >> 


12023 Cox Automotive Car Buyer Journey Report 

2 Based on 449 automotive sales people resumes in Zippia’s database.