Car buyers research next purchase in the evening

Car buyers much prefer to research their next vehicle in the evening when the majority of car dealerships are closed, a new study has found.

According to data from Auto Trader, 86 per cent of motorists search for their next car after 6pm. Furthermore, of the 1,300 car buyers examined over the first three months of 2015, two thirds performed searches on a mobile or tablet.

Whether you are a part-time dealer running a one-person operation or a large franchise dealership, it is important that all motor traders cater to this trend by having a mobile-friendly, up-to-date website that will enable potential customers to see the cars the business has for sale. In much the same way, traders themselves can easily use the ChoiceQuote website to obtain an online road risks insurance quote or online motor trade insurance quote at any time of the day that suits them.

Auto Trader's research found that just 24 per cent of desktop users, 18 per cent of tablet searchers and 36 per cent of smartphone users said they were most likely to search between the hours of 9am and 6pm when dealers’ doors are typically open. While visiting a dealership remains a key stage in the process, it usually comes after the car buyer has researched the vehicle they want to purchase.

Market research director at Auto Trader, Nick King, explained: “This latest research continues to frame a buying journey where a forecourt visit is increasingly the affirmation of a decision made following extensive research online.

“In this new online environment … a content-rich, responsive dealer website become key tools in driving leads. They are the ‘night watchmen’ for your dealership, the professional face of your online business that drive leads out-of-hours, or in the absence of any active engagement with you or a member of your team.”