What Does Online Retailing Mean For Your Dealership? Where Are You On The Digital Journey?

Selling used vehicles online is going to be a huge opportunity for dealers in 2018 and beyond, according to the noise on the street anyway! But do you believe in all the hype?

Whether you’re selling new, nearly new or used vehicles, this subject is on your radar, regardless of if you believe the hype or not. With 25% of car buyers looking to commit to a purchase online (according to a recent Trustpilot survey,) it’s clear that the demand is there from consumers.

Inertia has been a longstanding problem for the automotive industry, particularly over the last decade, especially when almost every other industry has been innovating the buying journey beyond recognition, with online sales becoming as normal as buying a pint of milk from the village shop.

Consumers Are Now Used to Buying From Their Own Home

Whilst many dealerships do a sterling job of customer service, others do not. And for many buyers the idea of buying online from the comfort of their own home, is an attractive proposition indeed.

The automotive industry is on the cusp of evolution, soon consumers will be buying used vehicles online, and dealers will be able to provide a part exchange valuation, full credit checks, and the process and approval of finance applications entirely online too! All this without having to visit or talk to a dealer, until they deliver the car to the consumer’s doorstep.

There’s no doubt that the catalyst for this enormous change in consumer expectations of online (or multichannel) services and experiences is that these days people are influenced by the increasing convenience of online retail, with flexible and fast delivery options and it’s high time the automotive industry caught up.

Many vehicle buyers are now making the most of car finance packages and starting to think of purchasing a car as more of a recurring monthly spend than one large initial lump sum. Most want insurance, servicing and other add-ons included in the price, and the prospect of deposit and finance agreements being personalised and set up online, with no requirement for the user to conduct any additional transactions through a dealer is attractive, particularly for millennials, 36% of whom would consider buying a car online through a digital method, again according to the recent Trustpilot survey.

Buying or Reserving Online Offers Customers More Flexibility

In comparison to traditional buying journeys, the e-commerce route is designed to ensure a more flexible retail experience for consumers. It could be used to supplement initial research, to make a purchase after a test drive, or to avoid visiting a dealership altogether if the consumer doesn’t fancy driving 20 miles to their nearest showroom.

Ordering a vehicle online may result in a greater choice of features, too but on the whole, the intention is to fit in with the hectic lifestyles of the modern-day consumer, whilst offering a superior proposition than other dealerships.

Car buyers are becoming more and more attracted to reliable online purchases for vehicles and things such as booking a delivery slot give the buyer certainty as to when they will take ownership of their new car, which is again something that has worked wonderfully in other retail industries.

Expect automotive online retail to be a big trend over the next five years, as consumers are beginning to feel that buying a car online is no big deal at all.

Click Dealer is launching the UK’s first fully integrated online retail platform for used vehicles, ClickEngage™. Get in touch today for a free demo or to request more information by emailing marketing@clickdealer.co.uk, calling 01782 478220 or via our contact page.



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