Is it possible to buy a vehicle on line? Yes, it is possible with General Motors to buy a car just by clicking on a button. GM is directing a new online service that consists in buying cars from local dealers through online shopping. The initiative, called Shop-Click-Drive, has been tested with 100 dealers in eight states, around U.S. with the result of 900 car sold; at the end of this year, the program will be proposed to 4,300 GM dealers nationally.
Clients have the opportunity to review inventory and choose the vehicle, get a quotation, select additional options such as accessories or extended warranties via website; if necessary apply also for financing and confirm the purchase. The dealer will also deliver the new car directly to the buyer’s destination.
According GM’s view, this initiative does not replace dealers but only facilitate online customers’ experience. GM believes that such new experience is crucial in a globe where shoppers are used to make large online purchases. However, dealers are hesitant about this challenge, because in-store experience offers them more familiarity to encourage shoppers to add many other options like insurance products or financing.
On one side the industry is conscious that there is more ability to sell cars and additional features in the store but, on the other hand this new evolution is for a group of people that are looking for straightforward shopping experience instead of the whole process of visit a car dealership and negotiate with a salesman.
Globally, 94% of customers do research online before buy a vehicle, and one third is ready to purchase it via internet.
I believe that this is a new way to use the web, and it is important to take advantage from this new trend as a way to stay closer to the customers; now it is too early to forecast it, we need to wait and see how it works.