Press release

Auto Trader points to 15 million fewer retailer visits since 2010

Average number of forecourt visits fall from 4.4 to 2.2, from 2010 – 2014.

  • Single site visit is increasingly the norm: buyers arrive following decisions made online
  • Steps to reduce ‘market friction’ in the online space are key to bringing more buyers and sellers together, says Auto Trader

The number of visits made by car buyers to retailer forecourts could have fallen by as many as 15 million in the last four years. That means 15 million fewer opportunities to engage with customers in showrooms every year and more buyers arriving on site having already made a decision online about which car to buy. It’s a trend that is likely to continue in the years ahead, Auto Trader asserts today.

In 2010 buyers visited 4.4 physical sites en route to their next car. Last year, the average was just 2.2, according to figures taken from the Annual Buyer Behaviour Survey undertaken for Auto Trader by GfK1. With roughly seven million used car transactions in both 2010 and in 2014 this translates to a drop from 31 million forecourt visits in 2010 to 15.4 million last year.

The numbers contrast with www.autotrader.co.uk visits which have more than doubled. There are now around 40 million each month compared with 17 million in 2010. Trade solutions director at Auto Trader, Tim Peake says: “that as more and more buyers move online, taking steps to reduce ‘friction’ in the marketplace is key to bringing buyers and sellers together.

“Today consumers operate online because they feel more in control,” he continues, “by the time they make the journey to a physical forecourt, most will have researched extensively: they will know exactly what car they want, and a lot about the retailer from which they wish to buy.

“Of course retailers have to think and lead online, but as the country’s largest online marketplace we have to take steps to smooth the journey too. An important recent step forward has been the launch of our consumer valuations’ tool which is now being used to make a million valuations every month.

“What we have done is to simplify what consumers were already doing onsite with a tool powered by comprehensive retail price data. There’s no longer any need to find equivalent models on site and make a best guesstimate of a car’s part exchange or retail value. Now they can arrive at an informed valuation that then forms the basis of a more constructive discussion with a retailer.

“Given the availability of information to consumers online, the competitiveness of the market and dynamism of retail pricing, live market data has to be the starting point for consumer valuations, but also for our dealers in powering products like Auto Trader i-Control.”

Auto Trader is looking at other areas to smooth the consumer online journey and connect buyers and sellers effortlessly. These include vehicle provenance checks, finance support and insurance partnerships

 For all trade media enquiries, please contact:

Nigel Wonnacott, PR Director at JJ Marketing, on 07802 483 971 or nigel.wonnacott@jjmarketing.co.uk

Missed this week's webinar with special guest @vertumotors? Well fear not - the whole webinar is now available on demand at https://t.co/A8vB2i49FU https://t.co/fpMbEkaRgB
Driving long distances? Well the best car for the job is the @UKVolkswagen Golf which scooped the Best Car for Long Distances award at the Auto Trader New Car Awards 2020. Find out what owners said at https://t.co/TAtdeRojpZ https://t.co/4Sj9ANaFK6
For those looking for a 7 seater you can do no better than the @VolvoCarUK #XC90. That's according to the 181,000 car owners who voted it the best 7 seater in this year's Auto Trader New Car Awards! https://t.co/M7t1X3Ic9S https://t.co/csJOtcU63N
Exactly one week ago @MrRoryReid & @ErinBakerMotors announced the winners of the Auto Trader New Car Awards – revealing the best #newcars in the UK according to over 181,000 car owners! You can check out the #award winners at https://t.co/FMgf5HByCM #ThrowbackThursday https://t.co/CLdSORmOV0
Exactly one week ago when @MrRoryReid & @ErinBakerMotors announced the winners of the Auto Trader New Car Awards – revealing the best #newcars in the UK according to over 181,000 car owners! You can check out the #award winners at https://t.co/FMgf5HByCM #ThrowbackThursday https://t.co/SAFHIczDhl
#Dacia have done it once again! The @daciauk Duster once again won the Best Value New Car at the Auto Trader New Car Awards 2020 - an award they also took home in 2019! https://t.co/vf00Z0g60W https://t.co/rn5qZX59Gh
We've seen a record number of #newcar and van #leads with new car retailers enjoying a massive 91% monthly increase in leads! Discover the latest new car data and how to drive even more leads as we see demand continue to spike now > https://t.co/8l2Mkx0ldn
Big thanks to everyone who joined today's webinar and of course to our guest speaker @vertumotors!
Reminder that next week we'll be launching #ATHighlyRated! Retailers who met the criteria will be receiving a pack next week to promote their achievements to consumers. https://t.co/UJgS71ytoP
Over to @stuart_trader who reveals the result of our earlier poll - a majority discounting prices much less or maintaining pre-#covid19 approach https://t.co/t8PfkUzrtU

Auto Trader Group plc
Registered in England (Company number: 09439967)

Auto Trader Limited
Registered in England and Wales (Company number: 03909628)

Registered address:

1 Tony Wilson Place
Manchester
M15 4FN
VAT number: GB 614 8918 20

Keep in touch

We use social media to speak to the UK’s largest car buying audience