You know your customers are relying more and more on information they find online before they ever set foot in your dealership. You’ve been seeing it firsthand for years, we’ve been telling you for quite some time, and everyone’s seen the stats that back up the anecdotal evidence. From social media to online car review services to dealership websites, the web makes up a huge part of the shopping process for twenty-first century car buyers.
Now, recent research shows that online information gathering isn’t just a growing part of car buying; it’s actually replacing the traditional test drive. According to the report, 16% of today’s car buyers make their purchase without once getting behind the wheel. That’s one in six consumers who don’t even show up at a dealership until they’re ready to sign.
And video is the online medium people are turning to instead.
Don’t get us wrong—we’re not claiming that a video or any other online experience could ever actually replace an in-person test drive; like other experts both on the dealer side of things and providing car buying advice to average consumers, we think it’s important to actually drive a vehicle before making a purchase, and we know the test drive can also be a great opportunity for a great salesperson.
But however things should be, there’s no arguing with the way things are, the fact is more people want video and fewer people want test drives.
In addition to the fact that a substantial portion of buyers are now opting to forgo a test drive all together, a full third of car buyers surveyed only test drove a single model—and only took it out one time before making a purchase. Nearly half of all drivers (49%) spent less than half an hour test driving and otherwise examining a car in person before making what they considered to be an informed decision.
All of these figures show a clear upward trend from the first time a similar survey was conducted several years ago. Project that trend out a few more years, and you’ll have a majority of car buyers who have already largely if not entirely made up their minds before they pull onto the lot, let alone get behind the wheel.
For better or for worse, it’s happening. The question you need to ask yourself is, is my dealership ready?
Car buyers who opt out of test drives are getting the information they need through video, and the more comprehensive your videos are the more buyers you’ll be able to attract and convert. Dealer Video Showroom (a Dealer.com Certified Technology Provider) makes it easy, providing bumper to bumper coverage of every vehicle’s features and specs in engaging and easy-to-navigate videos uploaded directly to your dealership’s website.
Click on over and schedule your virtual test drive today!