Critical Car Buying Steps. 90% of which can be digitized. Maruti, Hyundai & Kia have already adopted
It's no surprise that consumers turn to digital—especially mobile—as they shop for a car. Digital shapes the auto customer journey. A customer roughly goes through about 15 key/ critical steps in his car buying journey and the fact that the pandemic has spread its wings, now it lays more emphasis on taking those digital. It is possible that we may have a few of the steps in the journey clubbed or a few steps jumped over, but the journey remains on the same track.
Gone, are the days that a customer used to make multiple visits to buy one car. Now, the customers lay more emphasis on the fact that he wants a "touchless" / "contactless" buying experience. He/She is willing to even jump the step of visiting a showroom.
It starts with an online search. Primarily covered by Google today, since the other search engines have lost their relevance. Followed by a discussion with family/friends and peers. This is where the Intend to buy is getting cooked to the next stage.
Checking on Social Media for details on their shortlisted products, which is then followed by the OEM website for details on the FAB each OEM has to offer for each product.
Next is the role of online videos which is one of the most influential tools to grab a customer's attention. A good quality video with the required car description can help the customer graduate directly to the buying decision.
The customer next browses through the print ad along with the Television ads, this is more to get a sense of clarity on his research so far. A big trend now is knowing a person's loan eligibility, which has emerged as a new line of business altogether, customers tend to check their financial standings and this helps them understand to what extend they can stretch.
Next customer uses the GMB tool to locate the nearest dealer to get a product quote. Usually, a customer does visit one other dealership as well to ensure he gets the best deal.
Now, the customer is more focused on what are the top 2 or 3 cars he wants, where he looks at the TD experience, along with AR/VR tools to get a greater sense of the car he wants. The journey ends with the final car purchase.