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Understanding Your Customers

Understanding your customers is undeniably one of the most important requirements in functioning a successful dealership. Buyer behaviour has changed radically in recent past and the buyer process has become even more difficult to distinguish, as it can depend on the individual’s demographics. Millennials (born 1981-1996) are steadily becoming a substantial player in the car buyer market and often, they’re thoughts shift direction from the norm.

Now, the number of customers who have completed their car buying research online has risen to 94%. Showing the importance of online presence, today car buyers spend an average of 13 hours searching through masses of information and choices. Due to this 60% give up their search and make a purchase out of exhaustion. The problem is even more prominent amongst millennials.

According to a recent Consumer Automotive Index report 54% of young buyers said they would rather buy a car from their home than instore. 42% stated they would be content buying a car without a test drive, with the condition of some form of guarantee. 52% profess that they feel apprehensive when visiting car dealerships and Millennials lead the way with their dislike at 56% dreading negotiations with a dealer.

In order to correlate the physical dealership with the digital, managers should be prepared, or be already broadening the buying options available online. Millennials who have grown up with continual technological advances, show enthusiasm in regard to arranging their car finance/leasing agreement online. Most of the users who are utilizing online features are convenience seeking millennials, demanding quick and easy information via mobile rather than engaging in face-to-face discussions.

The forever accessible digital world means that consumers expect to be able to reach out at any time and from any location and device to receive instant acknowledgment. Brands should consider being available via WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and other Social media channels that are always open. Providing a rapid online response to queries, maximising car buyer' convivence and options and the potential for dealers to boost sales.

Offering a value exchange is a popular feature used as a means of dealer/ customer interaction. Online engagement is constantly increased by options such as request a video, brochure, car valuation and finance checker, which benefits both parties. 1.5 million valuations are conducted worldwide per month. With 33% of buyers walking away from a part-exchange due to a disagreement on the valuation offered. Services including CAP propose accurate returns taking into consideration a great range of specifications and qualities.

Research indicates that 70% of people who used YouTube as part of their car buying process were influenced by what they watched and views on YouTube of test drives, features and options, and walk-throughs have doubled in the past year. It is estimated that the future is video! Millennials are an incredible 150% more likely than any other customer to use video to comparison shop.

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