Car dealerships are more appealing than ever according to the findings of a survey which found 55% of car buyers now plan to make a visit.
Research conducted by CitNOW found that the proportion of consumers who intended to step onto a forecourt in the search for their next car had risen 7ppts, from 48% in 2018.
Over 55s (69%) are most likely to visit a dealership, it said, with 35 to 44-year-old motorists (45%) least likely to visit a showroom prior to buying. Men are slightly more inclined than women to visit dealerships while choosing their next car.
Carol Fairchild, commercial director of CitNOW, said: “Motorists clearly still covet that face-to-face customer experience and want the buying journey to be a personal one with the dealership.”
Fairchild said that the challenge for retailers was standing out, suggesting that video would help to build customer engagement before they even set foot in the dealership.
She added: “In doing so, dealerships can make sure customers are visiting their forecourt, rather than the one next door.”
CitNOW’s research was conducted as part of its ‘Evolution of the Car Buyer’ report, which was launched this week.
The image and video specialist for the automotive industry surveyed 1,000 drivers across the UK, examining how car-buying preferences have evolved.
Confounding views from some quarters that the demise of motor retailers could be imminent, the new poll shows the opposite, finding that more than one in 10 buyers will expect to buy a car there and then when visiting a retailer.