The modern consumer is driving changes in online car purchasing.
Technology seems to evolve faster and faster as time goes on. Once we get used to one gadget, there’s something new. There’s a continuous learning curve, and it’s not always easy to keep up. While some of us are happy to use a phone as an actual phone with one “Ringy Dingy,” there’s no ignoring the changing world or those who are driving that change.
A car dealership simply cannot get left behind by a generation glued to mobile devices. Even baby boomers are logging into their smart devices, especially to see grandkids on Facebook and shop online at Amazon. It’s hard to ignore the changes; they’re happening all around us.
It’s impressive that we landed an astronaut on the moon before a smartphone was invented. Look where we are today. Just about everyone has a smart device of some type.
Do Customers Want Online Car Purchasing?
- Modern consumers are far more knowledgeable. Easy accessibility to information allows people to research, sometimes obsessively. A quick online search determines which cars meet their needs, check reviews, and look at safety features. For many consumers, this is sufficient information to make a purchasing decision. Some customers are not interested in discussing options or negotiating a price. They want to do their own research and make a purchase without being ‘sold.’
- With heads dipped staring into smartphones, it’s hard to imagine people still talk to people – some say they talk to each other less. Whether we agree with this trend or not, we have to adapt to change or risk becoming irrelevant like Sears. Many people avoid sales interactions. They self check-out their groceries. They pay bills online. They would rather text than call, even if it takes longer. They shop online. Brick and mortar stores are falling like flies. Many malls are now ghost towns. People want the convenience and lower pressure of shopping in their pajamas, and that includes car purchases.
- Convenience, efficiency, and transparency are critical to today’s online shopper. The online experience allows the consumer to look at different options and compare them quickly in a relatively short period of time. They’re also able to shop during off hours. Everything can be done late at night while the kids are sleeping or early in the morning before heading to work. Flexibility and time savings are essential in an increasingly busy world.
Online Car Purchasing: Technology to Make it Happen
We understand that technology is not your focus. You know cars, and you know customer service. We’re here to help integrate technology so your dealership can stay successful. Today, technology is available that allows your customers to complete the entire car buying process online.
Having a website where customers can view car inventories is no longer enough. While there will always be those who want to see, smell and test drive before making a decision, it’s crucial to cater to the growing number of customers who wish to complete the entire process from their smartphone.
Losing technology-enabled customers can be catastrophic for your business.
Can you imagine a technology that assists your customers every step of the way through their car buying experience? You’re still in the driver’s seat with customizable CTAs, financing, trade-ins, and even your F&I products. Offering an online purchase experience gives contextual leads to your sales team. Contextualized leads improve the buying journey and build rapport with your customers. You’ll enhance the connection with customers throughout the process. When buyers enter the showroom for a test drive (some won’t want this) all you do is hand them their car keys. You get a happy customer for life. And don’t worry, data shows your F&I gross will not suffer.
We know it can seem confusing, and that’s why we would love to schedule a demo where you can see precisely how the AutoFi app works. Let us put you in the driver’s seat with an end-to-end solution to purchase cars online. That way you can focus on what you do best – sell cars and give excellent customer service.
Learn what Millennials want in an online buying experience.