Car buying journeys to be “more complex in 2023”, says iVendi CEO

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Car buying journeys are likely to become more complex in 2023 as the cost of living crisis affects consumer behaviour.

According to James Tew, iVendi CEO, because their personal finances are under pressure, individuals are likely to take more time and put more effort into the purchasing process.

He said: “The economic situation is going to affect a very large proportion of the population to varying degrees and that will inevitably have an effect on their approach to buying a used car. Simply, people are going to be more concerned when it comes to choosing a vehicle that is likely to be reliable, ensuring that it has the right aftersales package such as a warranty, and that it is financed in a manner that is affordable.

“All of this will feed directly through into the way in which they shop and the buying journeys they take. We are already seeing some evidence through our platform that customers are spending longer in the research phase before looking at the specifics of each vehicle in greater detail.”

The challenge for dealers in 2023 will be to give customers the means to make choices with which they were comfortable, he explained.

“For us, much of this is about a return to the fundamentals of motor retail following a period of time since the pandemic when dealers have been very profitable. That’s not to say that we see a reversal in the market forthcoming – indeed, we expect it to remain relatively strong – but that consumers are going to be much more deliberate and deliberative in their actions, we believe.

“It means ensuring that vehicles are imaged comprehensively and that full details are provided about the car, that the standard warranty and upgrade path are presented correctly and crucially, that finance options are explained clearly and tools such as calculators and pre-qualifiers are provided.

“It also potentially means that there will be a renewed emphasis on in-person activity, with prospective buyers wanting to spend more time examining and test driving the vehicle. That makes it ever more important that your systems allow seamless integration of consumer switching between online and showroom channels.

“An important element is also to recognise that, during a time when stock shortages are likely to continue, the vehicle parc continues to age, and prices are likely to stay historically high, that customers will probably be paying more for older vehicles. They are likely to need not just a lot of information but a high degree of reassurance.”





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