Consumer trends influence the automotive sector

Recent research suggests ever-rising expectations, social influence, and retailers striving to engage consumers with attractive offers, continue to sway customers. Such influence has not escaped the motor industry and recent years have seen major changes in the way consumers purchase a vehicle.

“We now have people calling us who are more interested in talking about the finance than the car,” said Adam Stott, Director at Big Cars. “Customers tend to do most of their due diligence before even speaking to the dealer so we’re talking about the transaction not the research phase. Enquiries are coming in through social, email, web, as well as phone and in store – we need to be ready to engage on finance however they get in touch.”

His comments have helped shape the most recent instalment of Alphera’s industry-leading ‘Financing the Car of the Future’ report, released this week. It explores the ways that vehicle dealers are working hard to secure a sale and understand the consumers of tomorrow.

The latest chapter, titled ‘Consumer behaviour and retail trends’, examines the retail world today and highlights customers’ desire for convenience. It focuses on the purchasers of tomorrow; Millennials – those consumers born between 1978 and 1995, who are highly motivated by social information and recognise the importance of a sharing economy – as well as Centennials, also known as Generation Z, who are self-aware, savvy and equipped with the very latest technology.

“It is this group of our population that will be the car buyers and motorists of tomorrow,” said Gerry Kouris, ALPHERA’s Financial Services marketing manager. “It is for this very reason that they cannot be ignored and should remain on the radar of dealers, and the wider motor industry. We operate in an evolving and fast-paced industry and as part of this future-focused project it was essential that we examined the behaviours of this generation; it makes very interesting reading.”

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