The Car Dealership As An Omnichannel Seller | PYMNTS.com

Car dealers and auto groups want to put their vehicles on the information superhighway – and for good reason: According to a report from Bain & Company, nearly half of car buyers begin their process online. And consumers may prefer car dealerships that offer eCommerce options: Seven out of 10 consumers are more likely to choose a dealership that offers online car buying, according to car buying platform Roadster. To help attract these customers, Roadster allows car dealers to bring the car buying process – or at least some elements of it — online.

Using services such as Roadster’s Express Storefront, car buyers can search a dealership’s inventory on multiple devices and receive upfront pricing information. The software also allows consumers to build a deal, value their trade-in and add service and protection plans to their purchases. In addition, shoppers can add accessories like cargo nets and cross bars.

Even with the availability of services like Roadster, not all consumers are comfortable buying a car completely online. Denogean said that Roadster, for example, sees only 10 percent of consumers completing the car buying process 100 percent on the internet. As a result, it’s critical for dealerships to offer a variety of ways for consumers to purchase cars, in addition to going through the whole process online. “That’s why the omnichannel piece is so important,” Denogean said. “Most people at some point during the process do go into the store.”

In fact, the Bain & Co. study found that when consumers purchase cars, they switch between online and offline channels four times – and want to move seamlessly between them. Many consumers may be comfortable completing some parts of the transaction online, but want to conduct other parts in a dealership.

Consumers on the Roadster platform, for example, might want to structure their deal, understand pricing or get a sense of the trade-in value before walking into a dealership – but they might want to finalize the payment and sign paperwork in the dealership. Over time, Denogean believes that the percentage of consumers completing car buying transactions online will increase.

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The Car Dealership As An Omnichannel Seller | PYMNTS.com.