Car dealers are confident they can ride out the current lockdown, according to a new survey.
Car-buying comparison site Carwow said its poll of 118 retailers revealed that 83 per cent of them felt better prepared to make remote sales easy for people over the coming weeks, despite the lockdown shutting showrooms.
James Hind, pictured, founder and chief executive of Carwow, said: ‘Covid restrictions are continuing to accelerate the consumer-led shift to online discovery and purchase, a trend we saw change with pace early in the Covid crisis.
‘Consumers were more engaged with Carwow last year than ever before, with almost 800 million interactions across all channels and 35 per cent year-on-year growth ending 2020 with more than five million YouTube subscribers.
‘In turn, we are committed to helping dealers convert these increased levels of online engagement into sales.
‘In order to do this, we’ve rapidly recruited more account management staff to help onboard new retailers faster and ensure they hit the ground running once they’re on our platform.’
The news comes after Carwow revealed that its leads delivered to dealers in 2020 accounted for one in 12 sales in the UK, as reported by Car Dealer.
It reckoned that its share of December 2020’s private new car sales was 9.81 per cent, while for the full year it finished on 8.35 per cent.
The annual figure, taken from internal Carwow numbers, was a near-13 per cent rise on 2019.
During the first lockdown, it waived membership fees, meaning dealers are now only charged when it generates an inquiry for them.
It is also giving 21 per cent off every inquiry until the end of August 2021 for new and existing retailer partners.
Hind added: ‘During the November lockdown, we found that retailers who embraced and promoted our contact-free services alongside their existing offers were rewarded with increased sales.
‘These features resulted in a 22 per cent increase in inquiries for the dealers that provided them.
‘In these challenging times, we are committed to working closely with our partners and the wider industry to boost confidence, sales and profits for retailers.’