Robust demand among car buyers
Buyers waiting in the wings
Despite the coronavirus a numerous closures of retailer forecourts, there is still an underlying demand from the car buying public.
This is according to the latest data from Auto Trader, which also found that once lockdown restrictions begin to lift consumers will be poised to buy their next car.
Although consumers can't visit retailers under the lockdown rules, latest Auto Trader figures show they are still interested in buying as there has been an increase in engagement across its platform. Over the last week of March, there was an overwhelming number of vehicles 'saved' – vehicle adverts saved as a favourite choice – an increase of eight per cent compared with the same period last year. In addition, data for March reported a very high advert view per user session number, meaning that Auto Trader visitors are viewing more adverts per visit than normal.
Richard Walker, Auto Trader's data and insight director, said: "There's no question the industry is facing a huge pressure, but to ensure we can return to health as quickly as possible; we urge retailers to resist the temptation to reduce prices. Many of our indicators suggest the market is capable of picking back up almost where we left off before the Covid-19 pandemic shook the industry, and we must be ready for when the Government restrictions lift.
"Despite consumers being unable to visit physical forecourts, they're still visiting and engaging with digital showrooms. We can see that not only are they saving their favourite vehicles and using this time to research their next car, but they're also making enquiries. It's therefore more important than ever that retailers are visible online to capture this consumer demand and be ready to engage with potential customers. By doing so, they'll be in the very best position for when they can reopen their doors."