There’s no doubt that the pandemic has accelerated the engagement of digital channels, and customers have now become more accustomed to being online for more of their purchase journey. Despite this, a recent YouGov survey found that 62% of buyers are still not in favour of making a car purchase entirely online.
Dealerships have also noticed that, although customers are doing more research online, when it comes to buying cars, people are still keen to engage with a human, whether by visiting a physical dealership or, as our data shows, picking up the phone.
Like they are in the travel and retail sectors, call volumes in the automotive industry have accelerated upwards since the new year.
In January, calls to automotive businesses were up 27.5% year-on-year. The upward trend continued into February, which saw a month-on-month increase of 20.7% in its first full week. By the end of the month, the total call volume seen in February this year was 19% higher than it was in 2021.
Driving online and offline car sales
Consumers’ intent to purchase cars is now close to pre-pandemic levels. And given the trends we can see in our call data, it’s clear that these purchases aren’t just happening online.
Understanding that people are still wanting to talk to people as they move through their purchase journey is key to boosting car sales. Whether it’s to have their online research confirmed or to gain added reassurance from a dealer before they sign on the dotted line, customers are still picking up the phone as part of their purchase journey.
It’s important that automotive brands acknowledge this and commit to evaluating the different touchpoints they offer customers to ensure each channel (offline and online) is being accurately measured and optimised.
Are you equipped for the rise in calls?
The telephone call is a huge channel of opportunity that the sector can leverage to drive more sales. With a phone call alone, dealers can anticipate new purchase behaviours, understand consumer preferences, and ensure their call agents are fully equipped to effectively respond to increased interest.
With call volumes revving up, every car dealership has a fantastic opportunity to move their marketing and sales tactics into the fast lane. Start a conversation with us today to find out more.