Car Search Platform Leads

Two in three buyers (67%) choose to use car search websites to make their first contact with dealers via the platforms, while the remaining third are prompted to visit showrooms in person.

The latest eBay Motors Group Consumer Insight Panel Research asked 2,000 buyers specifically about how they use car search websites to make that all important first point of contact.

The findings also revealed how consumers preferred to engage with dealers from a car search platform.

The most popular method, favoured by 21% of buyers, is by clicking the link within the listing to go to the dealer’s website to then engage directly with them.

This was followed by 18% who prefer to phone the dealer using the contact details on the platform and also 18% using the same method to email or message the dealer. Live Chat via the car search website is favoured by 10% of buyers.

With 33% of buyers preferring to visit dealers in person without prior contact, the research highlights how car search websites drive footfall directly to showrooms. The research found these tended to be an older profile of buyers typically aged over 45.

“Now, more than ever, dealers need to know precisely how their sales enquiries are generated in order to optimise their digital marketing spend,” said Lucy Tugby, Marketing Director of eBay Motors Group.

“It’s revealing that a third of car search visitors will first engage with dealers by turning up on their forecourts. This highlights how online visibility is crucial to generating sales enquiries for dealers and customers who just ‘rock up’ may have completed weeks of research online and be ready to buy,” she said.

The research is part of eBay Motors Group’s latest Consumer Insight Panel poll of 2,000 buyers, conducted last month by independent research firm Insight Advantage.