What Influences Today’s Auto Buyer?


Is your sales approach founded on giving customers the best price? If you think that should go without asking, odds are your dealership is behind the times. A contemporary sales approach is customer-centric, not sales-centric. If you stick with that guideline, sales will come as a natural progression. 

The Changing Role of Customer Satisfaction in Auto Sales

Are you thinking Customer satisfaction has always been our focus, so what’s new now? A lot.  The old focus on the customer was about coming through on a particular price or price range. That was the standard for decades. Auto buying was (and still is for some dealers) largely an exchange involving the shifting of commas and zeros until both parties agreed. 

The paradigm has shifted due to—you guessed it—the internet. This might come as a shock, but in some respects your customers know more than your salespeople.  Given this dramatic revelation, it’s simply no longer a best practice to rely on price as the motivating force.

With the technology available to both buyers and dealers, the changing face of sales is a given. We know customers are investing more time in pre-purchase research. The question is which dealers are holding up their end of the new deal. 

What Does Today’s Auto Buyer Want?

AutoiPacket is more than a tech company serving the auto industry. We’re a team of auto-industry insiders and tech pros keeping the pulse of our combined sectors. We pair sales expertise with insights from our packets to produce a data set that allows us to discover not only what’s influencing today’s auto buyer but also what’s causing pain points for dealers.

Marketing research supports the case for focusing on quality over price. And what defines quality? Saving time. New research shows 62% of consumers are willing to pay more for a simple experience. The verdict is out: If your sales strategy is focused on price, it’s time to make adjustments. 

Top Factors Influencing Auto Buyers

To come through with the simple experience buyers want, find out what most influences purchase decisions. While auto buyers aren’t completely insensitive to price, they’re more interested in finding vehicles that fit their needs. Largely, those needs take the form of durability, reliability, and resale value. 

Buyers are showing consistent interest in five key areas: 

  1. Vehicle history report
  2. Service RO’s
  3. Mechanical inspections
  4. Original build sheet/MSRP
  5. Warranty information

A customer-centric sales approach will make this information available to all potential customers. Provide it in a user-friendly format. Even better: Make it sharable on social media platforms.