At iVendi, we’ve just compiled some figures that tell a remarkable story of how the used car, van and motorcycle sectors have responded to the pandemic.
In the 12 months since the start of the crisis in March 2020, more than £1.3bn of online and showroom vehicle sales have been facilitated through our platform – representing an increase of £200m over the previous year and 120,000 individual vehicle sales.
To us, the fact that more business went through the platform during the pandemic than the previous 12 months reveals the extent to which technology has sustained dealers.
Vehicle retailers have spent more than half of the last year being able to only sell online and the overall market has markedly fallen – but those using our products have been able to buck that trend.
At the very outset of the crisis, we made a decision to be as proactive as possible with dealers, giving them the tools and support they needed to be able to not just survive but, as far as possible, thrive.
Especially, we made the Digital Deal feature of iVendi Transact free to dealers from its launch last April through to the end of the first lockdown, and it was widely adopted across our retailer customer base.
The key benefit of the Digital Deal during the pandemic has been that it works equally well in a showroom or online situation.
At a time when too many retailers have been stuck with dated ‘online retail 1.0’ systems that locked them into trading in a manner that no longer fitted with the real world, our dealers have enjoyed absolute flexibility in this regard.
What we have enabled them to do is respond immediately to each lockdown and each easing of restrictions, to take advantage of the market at each point in time.
Our £1.3bn of sales are genuinely omni-channel in this respect, and show how our technology has allowed seamless switching between showroom and online for both consumer and dealer.
All of this illustrates, we believe, that digital transformation not only potentially protects dealers from uncertainty but also promotes profitability.
We certainly have many dealers whose bottom line has not just remained solid but grown during the past 12 months.
With signs that used vehicle trading conditions look set to improve quite quickly, the same approach that promoted resilience during the pandemic should now allow dealers to fully maximise future opportunities by meeting a wider range of needs more effectively.
The iVendi connected retail range
ENGAGE rewrites the rules for online car, van and motorcycle search, allowing vehicle buyers to use natural language to narrow their inquiry rapidly and successfully.
CONVERT transforms initial online consumer interest in a vehicle into a sale, with features including a reservation tool, finance eligibility checking, application processing and multi-lender quoting.
TRANSACT develops online consumer interest in a specific vehicle through to a final transaction while managing the complexities of the sales process.
CONNECT delivers an omni-channel retail solution for vehicles and financial services, connecting the consumer, retailer and lender together at all stages of the buying journey.
With a connected, modular motor retail product range that engages consumers, converts buyers and manages transactions, iVendi technology interacts with around five million consumers every month as well as thousands of motor retailers, manufacturers and finance providers.