Friday, March 10, 2017

Transparency in automotive retail industry

Car dealerships are infamous for their transparency and unfortunately have gotten a bad rep. Many car buyers after their purchase feel like they were 'taken for a ride'.
Dealers understand this is not good in the long run and millennials, who are used to online shopping want an Apple store/Amazon kind of experience for their car purchase. Because of this, they have slowly adopting to the changing world and going more digital. A decade or so back the big deal was to start displaying their inventory online on web sites like and The next step was them having a bigger online presence by getting their own web site that in addition to displaying their inventory, they started to display their prices as well.
Now, there are a number of Digital Retailing tools that allows shoppers to complete a significant amount of the purchase steps online. This includes viewing the exact vehicle, the price, getting an estimate monthly payment on actual lender rates, getting an estimate on their trade-in vehicle, and applying for financing online. Some dealers now also will take a downpayment online to reserve the vehicle. It not too far away where shoppers can complete all steps online, print out a confirmation letter and get to the dealer to just pick up the vehicle! This shows how a notorious industry also has to change with time and start providing a better consumer experience through digital marketing and retailing.

Some examples:

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