Used car buyers find authentic OEM MSRP data, new-vehicle brochures and reconditioning receipts the three most convincing documents when evaluating their purchase decision, notes a new study from Rapid Recon-certified partner iPacket.
For the study, click activity and time spent were measured on various modules or documents provided in participating dealers’ digital vehicle presentations on their websites. Combined, authentic OEM MSRP data, the reconditioning receipts and the new-car brochure accounted for 36.6% of all click activity (99,190 clicks) and 42.3% of total session duration minutes (448,398 minutes).
The study’s results underscore the value provided in the sales process by reconditioning and proper vehicle documentation in the sales process, which may be surprising news to dealers.
“Buyers are looking for longer useful life from the used vehicles they buy. Information from vehicle reconditioning reports helps provide the information car shoppers crave,” said Dennis McGinn, founder and chief executive officer for dealership reconditioning and communications software company Rapid Recon. “Their interest and trust in how a dealership reconditions its used cars should command every dealer’s attention. Displaying proof of this recon-to-retail investment is a value-focused differentiator and proven by the data in this study.”
Seve Astorg, iPacket founder and chief executive officer, said the study’s goal was to determine what content drives shopper engagement as they research used cars and what materials they look at that hold their attention most.
“The recon report lists the mechanical and cosmetic details the dealer invested in to make the used car safe, dependable and appealing,” McGinn said. “This investment builds trust in the dealership and for the dealer value in the vehicle to hold margin,” McGinn said.
iPacket’s three-month study involved 500 iPacket dealers and 80,000-plus unique vehicle shoppers. “The results concluded that shoppers recorded approximately half of their click activities and session duration on research data not traditionally found on dealer websites,” Astorg said.
Traditional dealer websites provide consumers photos of vehicles, a vehicle history report and bullet data points specific to a car, such as the model year, make and mileage. iPacket solutions improve dealers’ websites and one-to-one client communication. They do so, Astorg said, by providing enhanced research material, such as the original OEM MSRP/build sheets, reconditioning receipts, new car brochures, warranty information and more for every vehicle they offer for sale.
Consumers want all the data, and when the data is not at their fingertips, they take it upon themselves to find the information via search engines. By providing OEM verified data directly from the dealer’s website, consumers can review photos against the build sheets to understand the vehicle more specifically. When information also includes reconditioning receipts, consumers will have even greater confidence in knowing what was done to the vehicle they’re shopping for to prepare it correctly for sale.
Other documentation measured for this study included vehicle history reports, warranty information, images, vehicle videos and dealer “about us” information.
Astorg said the study data suggests that dealers who use the iPacket-enhanced research material record 46.9% more consumer-click activity and shopper session duration than dealers who do not display enhanced research content.
“The data is astonishing, considering the time spent on the average iPacket display is more than 35 minutes by the consumer, further elaborating that they want the data and to be informed,” Astorg said.
Not only do dealers offering shoppers iPacket research tools provide more comprehensive vehicle information, but also accurately appraise consumers’ vehicles via their Sticker Pull feature, which helps dealers and consumers understand the vehicle’s options when traded-in.