Let’s take a look back at the way things were done in the early days of car buying. Manufacturers had multiple ways of getting their cars sold to the public. New models were sold at the factory gates, in the showrooms, by mail order, and through the work of door to door sales people. Imagine, you had a car salesman come to your door just to tell you about the newest safety features on a vehicle. These include seat belts, windshield wipers, or power windows. Sounds more like a nuisance to me. We credit the ’90s as the time when the internet really exploded in regards to the automotive business. As Internet use and popularity continued to increase, information about new and upcoming car designs and features seemed to be unlimited. The accessibility to this information was so convenient and easy that car buying would never be the same. People were able to research availability, features, colors, and get details that would have only been available if you were to physically go down to the dealership and speak to a salesperson.
As the internet advanced, more information was provided by both manufacturers as well as customers who wanted to share their personal experiences publicly to anyone looking to purchase the same type of vehicle. Customer reviews have significantly changed the way people purchase things online. Positive customer reviews have been shown to increase sales for the expressed product, but negative reviews have the potential to decrease sales.
The internet has made it possible to research multiple vehicles in order to see how people from all over the world are buying and what their experiences were with the vehicle they purchased. A mere ten years ago, people would have to visit roughly five or more dealers before making their purchase. Today, with the information available online, customers visit less than two times before making their final decision on a purchase or lease. In many cases, people arrive having already decided what kind of vehicle they want based on their research of prices, reviews, features, and maintenance costs. They usually know what the dealership is asking price wise for the vehicle, as well as what a fair retail price should be, and what type of financing options are available to them upon purchasing.
Once all of the research is thoroughly conducted and the finances are calculated, the customers head to the dealership for the final steps of getting their new vehicle. The actual process of buying a car and driving it off the lot has remained the same. However, eliminating all of the necessary and rather tedious pre car buying steps make this final step all the more satisfying. The one thing that the internet can’t do is overwhelm your senses the way that new car smell can. The look of a brand new, freshly polished vehicle sitting under the glow of a showroom floor, the feeling of the steering wheel in your hands, and the roaring sound of the engine as you finally step on that gas pedal for the first time are things that will remain priceless to a new car owner.
The joy of buying a new car has the ability to take you back to a time when you were a kid and you finally got that shiny new toy.