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Carwow Survey Reveals That Buying Cars Online is The New Normal

Buying Cars Online, the new normal says Carwow, dailycarblog

Carwow doesn’t just do YouTube videos that are used as comedic props by the presenter and former Brummie, now Surrey resident, Mat Watson. They are a kind-of digital reseller and earn a small commission for every car bought through the Carwow buying platform. The Carwow platform has a user base of 1 million potential buyers. And in this age of digital retailing Carwow has lots of customer data, which allows the company to spot buying behaviors and trends. The company decided to carry out a survey of over 1000 consumers who bought a car through Carwow since dealerships were allowed to reopen has confirmed a tide of change for the future of car retailing across Europe. 

Carwow, CEO, James Hind comments: “Consumer appetite for online buying has been sharpened by the pandemic, which forced many who have previously resisted digital purchasing, to embrace it. What is yet to be proven is if this trend will continue, but our survey of carwow customers, not just here in the UK but in Spain and Germany too, firmly indicates that online buying of cars is now the new norm.”

This is what the Carwow survey revealed:

carwow boosts consumer confidence to buy online

  • 97% of carwow car buyers were satisfied with the experience and convenience of buying online – 72% said they were highly satisfied and 29% satisfied.
  • What’s more, 54% said they would continue to do the bulk of their car buying online from now on.
  • 88% of customers reported that choosing a carwow dealer gave them extra peace of mind and enabled them to buy with confidence.

Consumer confidence in dealer actions to mitigate risk is high

  • More than 2 thirds of carwow buyers said that Covid-19 will not deter them from visiting dealers in the future.
  • In the new Covid-19 world of today, 40% of carwow buyers have total confidence in dealers taking the appropriate measures to reduce exposure and make a visit to the showroom safer.
  • Interestingly, 32% of buyers said the pandemic and safety within the dealership was of no consequence to them.
  • 28% were influenced by the risks associated with the pandemic and took a considered approach to visiting showrooms.

Will ‘customer centres’ replace the showroom?

  • 43% of carwow buyers purchased a new car without visiting a showroom.
  • The remaining 57% did visit a showroom, but 38% only visited once.
  • Sealing the deal was a key reason for buyers to visit dealerships:
    • 55% of visitors did so to place an order
    • 50% of visitors did so to collect their purchase
  • 23% of carwow buyers who visited a showroom did so to browse options before making a purchase decision.
  • Just 10% of all buyers said they wished they could have visited the showroom more during their buying experience.
  • 36% of all carwow buyers valued changes made by dealers to accommodate remote buying.

Test drives from home could be the future…

  • Carrying out a test drive was the biggest reason for carwow buyers visiting a showroom (57%).
  • 6% of buyers took advantage of the offer provided by their dealer to have a test drive car delivered to and collected from their home address.
  • Not surprisingly, nearly 52% of carwow customers said they would have like to have had the option of a test drive from the comfort of their own home, rather than visit the dealership.
  • A further 42% said they would take comfort in a test drive car being sanitised at their home, in full view, upon delivery – for added peace of mind.

How can dealers further adapt to meet the needs of the modern buyer in a new world?

  • The findings of the carwow customer survey reveal that a good number of dealers have adapted to offer a broad range of remote services to boost customer loyalty and retention.
  • 55% of carwow customers were able to conduct end-to-end paperwork digitally – whilst 1 in 4 customers who weren’t offered this, wished they had been.
  • 33% of carwow buyers were able to take a virtual online tour of the car they were considering buying – whilst 1 in 3 customers who weren’t offered this, wished they had been.


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