Retailers could be missing an opportunity to communicate with female buyers in the car-buying journey by using video, research conducted by CitNOW suggests.
A nationwide survey commissioned by the digital communications specialists revealed that men are almost twice as likely to receive a personalised video when buying a car.
However, half of female buyers (50%) said they would be more likely to purchase a car if they had received a pre-recorded video or participated in a live video chat.
According to the CitNOW research, 47% of women said personalisation was one of the most valued elements of video communication, representing a missed opportunity for retailers to engage with a key demographic.
Carol Fairchild, chief customer officer at CitNOW, said: “With showrooms now open across the UK, retailers should still be utilising their new or enhanced skills in digital communication to give car buyers the best of both the physical and digital worlds.
“Customers now expect a choice in which elements of their car buying process they wish to conduct in person or online, and video enables an effective way for retailers to engage with customers in a transparent and personal way.
“Our research found that 84% of all consumers who received a video when buying a car felt it to be a valuable part of their experience, with female buyers ranking personalised interaction as the biggest reason for this.”
CitNOW reported a 244% increase in live sessions during the latest lockdown, in comparison to the Autumn lockdown period in 2020.
CitNOW said it created three million videos in the first quarter of 2021, with more than 1.2 million videos created in March 2021.
The company advises retailers to follow up every lead with a video – live or pre-recorded – and personalise it to “maximise the sales opportunity”.
CitNOW introduced its live video function in May 2020, to support dealers with new ways to communicate during the pandemic.
Following its poll of 1,000 consumers, CitNOW also found that more than two fifths of female car buyers (43%) said that they would be willing to travel further to a car dealership if the dealer sent a personalised video of the specific car they were interested in.
It also found that women are more likely to buy online than men if they received a walkaround video (48% for women versus 39% for men).
CitNOW said it recommends retailers increase engagement using video to enable them to respond to customer enquiries as buying habits change.
In its newly published report, Accelerating the Digital Customer Experience, CitNOW evaluates the rise in the use of video and explains how adapting video output according to customer demographics can boost sales conversions and drive greater loyalty.