Getting inside the mind of the digital car buyer, from Automotive Management.
Digital retail lessons from the US
Chip Perry, Auto Trader
Car dealers in the UK could learn from their American colleagues, according to Chip Perry, who established America’s Autotrader.com brand in 1997 and now sits as a non-executive board member of Auto Trader in the UK.
US dealers are now advertising unregistered new cars online, often showing an asking price that varies from the manufacturer’s list price.
Perry said there is at least 90 days of unregistered inventory available for consumers at US showrooms. There is more transparency around pricing – consumers can see online the average price paid for a new car – and the dealer invoice price has been available to consumers since 1996.
Despite dealers’ fears about the consumer having such information, US dealers’ profitability has not suffered, he showed delegates. There is also more transparency of part-exchange pricing online, and major US dealers are embracing digital retailing – to make their own websites transparent and convenient to consumers, and to allow online consumers to create their desired deal and print it out to take to the dealership. Behind this, the dealers’ profits are secured.