Tips for trade-in of used cars in car dealerships

The used car market has been rather poorly stocked for some time now - as I'm sure you know from your own experience. But why is that? What potential does the trade-in and purchase of used cars offer? The current BIX special survey provides a possible answer to this question. Many companies do not take advantage of all the available opportunities to obtain new goods (i.e. used cars).

Problems with procurement and trade-in

The BIX (industry index) special survey mentioned briefly above, which was carried out for "kfz-betrieb" in cooperation with BDK (Bank Deutsches Kraftfahrzeuggewebe) and BBE Automotive, came to the unsurprising conclusion that around two thirds of its contractual partners still have problems procuring used vehicles.

Around 64 percent of the companies surveyed in the study stated that it is very difficult for them to obtain used vehicles. One in five companies even stated that they no longer buy used vehicles at all because they are simply not available.

Procurement sources for trade-ins

Trade-ins from customers were currently named as one of the most important procurement sources for entrepreneurs. Behind this - by a considerable margin - comes the used car exchange from the B2B (business to business) sector, followed by direct purchase from the manufacturers or importers themselves. Consequently, vehicle purchases from private individuals are becoming increasingly important for the business area.

In practice, this approach works when customers come to the company with the intention to buy and explicitly inquire about a new vehicle. This should be followed by appropriate "follow-up" by the company, in the form of telephone inquiries with the customer and short e-mails. The option of using the digital contact form is not yet frequently used by customers in this industry and should therefore be disregarded.

Trade-in widget for car dealers

Not surprisingly, since such a trade-in plug-in or digital customer form is currently offered by not even one fifth of the companies. The old problem of supply and demand is therefore present and this needs to be solved. Companies are currently helping themselves with a notice on their website informing about the possibility of purchasing a vehicle. But is this sufficient?

If customers are only made aware of this issue - which is becoming increasingly important for businesses - there, some lucrative business may be lost. In today's modern world, there are numerous other channels available. According to the survey, however, these are used too rarely or not at all. Social media is only used by 49%. Digital campaigns are used by only 38% of respondents and search engine advertising by only 24%. So there is still a lot of room for improvement here.

Potential with active trade-in

But the courage to change is obviously sorely lacking in this industry. Only just under 25 percent of those surveyed said that they wanted to make it easier for their customers in the future by offering the option of digital information on the subject of trade-ins. More serious, however, is the fact that only 3 percent of the companies surveyed have set themselves the goal of mapping this process completely digitally. One small ray of hope is that 16 percent already offer this option.

Need for action also in purchasing

The challenges to be overcome by the car trade in terms of vehicle purchasing are therefore great. Reports of enormous difficulties in obtaining good used vehicles are becoming more frequent in dealer circles. However, almost three quarters of the car dealerships surveyed in the study already stated that they have clearly recognized the importance of private customers as a source of purchases. What is missing, however, is the final step, namely clearly communicating the possibility of a trade-in. This is because this topic is usually only discussed during the sales meeting. It is therefore necessary to proactively change the approach . The problem has already been clearly identified. It is therefore all the more surprising that only a quarter of the companies surveyed would like to provide customers with more information in the future - especially via digital channels - about the possibility of purchasing a vehicle.

Complexity of purchase and trade-in of used cars

Of course, the complexity of this topic and the concerns that go along with it are understandable somewhere. After all, there are enough dubious inquiries and there is also a lack of solutions. However, passivity is out of place in this business. This is because passivity in practice does not lead to customer loyalty and entails the risk of losing customers for a company. One solution could be to start with the customer.

  • What does the customer want?
  • What are his needs?

In this way, it would be possible to tap the source of purchases from private individuals, which has become essential for the trade.

Purchase of used cars at the beginning in contact with customers

It is usually of great importance for the customer to know whether the "old" vehicle could be purchased before buying a new one. Not just at some point in the conversation, but right from the start.
This is where the greatest strength of the trade comes into play, namely the ability to offer everything from a single source. It is therefore always worthwhile to think in terms of the big picture, and this also applies to communication with customers.

The option of trade-ins needs to be emphasized more and can also be a segue into leasing and financing.

The customer must be given the feeling at the first visit that he is at the right address. So if he has the opportunity to "get rid of his used car" here and can get a new vehicle at the same time and, what's more, can finance this new vehicle directly on site through you (or your contacts and partner companies), why should he look elsewhere? This is how you bind a customer right from the first conversation.

Possibilities for improvement in the purchase and trade-in of used cars

There are many opportunities for improvement - as everywhere in life. Using digital channels is the start, step by step. Finding out how others - including competitors - are implementing it can be a first step in the right direction. From this, good ideas can usually be found for one's own dealership, which in the best case can be implemented immediately.

But you can also learn from other companies how not to do it and avoid these mistakes in your company right away. This will save you the tedious learning process and, as we all know, time also saves money.

All beginnings are hard and change can be scary in all walks of life. But nothing comes from nothing. Let yourself be on the digital adventure, you certainly won't regret it.

Any more questions? Would you like more information? We look forward to hearing from you.

Feel free to contact us today to discuss your challenges and to learn more about whether Automanager is the right tool for you.
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