One of the pitfalls of being employed in the car dealer world is the likelihood that you and your colleagues probably haven’t actually purchased a car for years.
Therefore it could be the case that their knowledge of how to buy cars for themselves, rather than selling them to others, doesn’t match that of a real-life customer.
Car dealer employees tend not to buy new cars for themselves often, and even if they do, they have easy access to information and the best deals. Either as a perk of their employment or due to a significant discount, it is generally easier to replace their car without an arduous research process like everyone else.
This means that you may not be familiar with the way that many other people search for cars online.
This stage of the buying process is all down to preference and what the buyer feels most comfortable with, but a shift has changed attitudes in recent years. People begin searching on Google, which is a different search behaviour to Auto Trader, for example - but dealers tend to think Autotrader first because that’s their perception of the industry..
Research also shows that people don’t want the hassle of haggling with a salesperson - and as mentioned in another post of ours the ‘click to buy’ features which we so often see on retail and FMCG websites are likely to become increasingly relevant on dealer websites.
The motor trade comes with a lot of unique terminology. Whilst you will already understand the jargon, it’s important to remember that buyers from outside your industry can easily misunderstand certain terms.
Pre-reg, ex-demo, after sales, part exchange, finance, pay cash, add-ons... These are all terms which often confuse consumers and could easily be changed to something more coherent, such as changing ‘after sales’ to ‘servicing and MOT’. It may mean something to you, but what does it mean to your car buyers?
Dealers always want to push pre-reg cars, yet most consumers don’t know what these even are! Let alone why these vehicles can offer them a deal. Even when ex-demos are sold after a few months, as a used car at a reduced price, customers aren’t aware of the potential savings that these vehicles can represent.
If you take anything away from this blog post, make it this - you are not your own target audience.
Always run changes to your website, choices in terminology and more past someone who doesn’t work in a car dealership. Even if it’s just checking your wording with a family member, or running a quick survey on google, these quick checks can help you to be more relevant to your customer - and in the end, that will result in more sales.