To stay competitive, today’s dealers need to offer customers a simple, convenient and immersive way to get the service and car advice they need.
The transition to online car buying has been slow but steady. By 2014, McKinsey was hinting at a change to come . In 2019, they reported that consumers were carrying out most of their pre-purchase research online. Today, most people report that they do their due diligence on their mobile device or desktop, picking out the car they want to buy online.
Many customers still visit the physical dealership to test drive a vehicle, make the final purchase and drive their car off the lot. Connecting the digital experience with a visit to the showroom is essential for these buyers. But for others, that step is becoming less and less important as consumers become comfortable buying even large-ticket items such as cars online.
A 2021 Deloitte survey asked customers why they were opposed to a fully virtual car-shopping experience. Overwhelmingly, customers responded that they wanted to see their car before buying it. Consumers also said they wanted to negotiate in person, and they stressed that they wanted to interact with a real person before making a purchase.
Seeing the vehicle inside and out. Negotiating face-to-face. This experience can be delivered remotely with the power of visual engagement — a key aspect of the modern digital dealership. A digital customer journey that uses live video engagement to meet buyers face-to-face and guide them through the buying journey meets the needs of consumers while opening up new possibilities for today’s auto dealerships.
The buying journey guides consumer involvement with a product from the first moment they become interested in the product until they own it. Today, the successful Automotive Retailer incorporates key digital touchpoints extensively along this journey.