THE founder and MD of wewillbuyyourcar.com has called for greater transparency in the industry he created.
Noel Parkinson who pioneered online car buying in the UK, has called for greater transparency in light of the Office of Fair Trading investigation into competitor, webuyanycar.com, which exposed ‘bad practice’, last week.
The investigation revealed that 96 per cent of webuyanycar.com’s customers received less than they were initially offered for their vehicle, with some receiving 25 per cent less than the initial offer. This is something that Noel Parkinson says, ‘is not and never has been’ a part of his vision for online car selling:
‘I created wewillbuyyourcar.com to empower consumers, by removing the smoke and mirrors often associated in selling a car, and to make the process as quick and easy as possible. As the OFT report reveals, in some quarters, this is not happening and the consumer suffers.
‘One technique is to ask the customers to take their car to a depot a long way from their home. The vendor knows that, as a significant amount of time has been spent on the transaction, the customer will be less likely to back out. This is the point when prices are driven down.
‘This is something I strongly disagree with. At wewillbuyyourcar.com, we collect wherever the customer chooses, make payment within 15 minutes and our movement in price, monitored across tens of thousands of customers, is just 3 per cent.
Parkinson believes that trying to beat down prices after an offer has been made ‘is just the tip of the iceburg’, even declaring his willingness to ‘open up my entire customer feedback to the Office of Fair Trading, or the media to prove that not all online car buying sites are the same.’
Parkinson also welcomed the intervention of the OFT and the comments of senior director of the OFT’s consumer group, Cavendish Elithorn: ‘Cavendish Elithorn was right to note the growing trend for selling personal possessions on the internet and to protect those who choose to do it.
‘From day one we have striven to ensure all customers have access to the most sophisticated software and the best possible service. I believe this is why over 99 per cent of our customers are happy to recommend wewillbuyyourcar.com to a friend.
‘In short, we pioneered this alternative way to sell cars. I know it is the future, and we will continue to offer a trustworthy, hassle free choice to the UK consumer when selling their current car.’