is online car-buying the way of the future?

Alison Hrevnack
August 10, 2021

The future is here, and that means every business is moving online. Sure, you know that potential customers research your dealership as it is - the makes and models you have, your inventory size, customer reviews… you know the drill. But what about online car-buying? Purchasing a vehicle online isn’t the preferred method yet. However, your dealership’s team should be fully prepared for online sales since technology is simply the modern way to do, well, pretty much everything.

Car-Buying Preferences:

What Customers Want & How Dealers Respond

According to, customers want more of the car-buying process to take place online.

  • 48% of consumers want to handle price negotiations online.
  • 42% want to handle financing online.
  • 18% of shoppers would buy a vehicle sooner if there was an online purchase option.

In response to this, dealerships have stepped up their digital game: 

  • 77% offer online estimates for trade-ins
  • 72% offer online chat negotiations
  • 60% have digital retail and financing options
  • And 58% offer home delivery.

Based on this information, customers clearly want shopping and car-buying to be as convenient as possible. And yet, despite aspects of digital car-buying becoming more prominent, only one in four customers actually want to purchase their next vehicle online. Although there is a significant increase in online car-buying, most customers still prefer in-person purchases.

1 in 4 Still Purchase In-Person.


So, if it seems like customers still prefer purchasing in-person, then why bother advertising your online purchasing capabilities? Good question. Between 2014 and 2018, Carvana saw more than 100% year-over-year growth in vehicles sold. Furthermore, Carvana and Vroom both saw an 89% growth in units sold between 2018-2019. Perhaps online car-buying isn’t the majority method right now, but who knows? Maybe someday it will be. Or, at least, your dealership should be prepared for a steady increase in online sales.

Stay a Step Ahead Car-Buying Trends

Marketing methods are constantly evolving, but up-to-date tech will keep your dealership ahead of the curve. So, if your customers are ready to buy their next vehicle online, your dealership is fully equipped to provide that option.

Is your dealership ready for the future of car-buying? Whether you’re practically starting from scratch or simply honing the online car-buying experience for your customers, the Giovatto Agency will provide you with the tools you need. We’ll analyze your strengths, then advise you on a course of action to prepare your dealership for more online sales.

No matter what the future has in store, the Giovatto Agency is always a step ahead. Contact us today for a free consultation!