More information sells used cars

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The Swedish new car market is on fire with February celebrating the market’s 26th consecutive month of growth and 2016 already looking set to beat 2015 as the largest ever Swedish market on record.

This unprecedented level of growth looks set to continue as interest rates stay low, house prices keep rising and the average consumer has high levels of disposable income to spend on high value items such as cars.

In parallel, the used car market also continues to grow with demand reaching a level that has forced traditionally conservative Swedish retailers into importing cars to satisfy the demand.

Like many countries, the used car buyer is changing the way they research and source a car with 92% now mainly looking at classified websites to not only find a car but also get a feel for what it will cost and where in the country their car of choice is available.

This increase in researching and purchasing used cars online has meant Autorola has used its expertise in online remarketing to work with OEMs to ensure their dealers represent their cars in the best possible way online.

Price in one important factor, but not all. You need to monitor the market changes and adjust to stay competitive online. Understanding the drivers and the balance between supply and demand is key. But to get the customers to contact you, you need to have the best possible presentation, good photos and information.

The modern day Swedish market shows that a dealer only providing one or a few photos of a car being sold online with a brief description of condition will struggle to sell that car when up against a dealer offering the same car with 10 – 15 good photos and much more detail on its condition. Anything that builds buyer confidence is positive for buying a car online which is often the most expensive purchase second only to buying a house.

As a result of the growth of online many OEMs are now using real-time business intelligence solutions to collect, processes and analyses live market data.

The old adage of increased stock turn increasing a dealer’s profitability is the same for retailers across the globe and OEMs that are spending more time on understanding the dynamics of their brand’s used performance both physical and online are bearing the fruits of a healthier, more profitable dealer network.

Autorola has also seen its online tools help support banks and leasing companies when managing repossessions. Although repossession levels have been falling in Sweden the new online management system developed for asset owners has created great interest particularly with its ability to manage external suppliers, documentation and process monitoring across a single online system.

The larger dealer groups, and finance and leasing companies are also using online to manage their vehicle inventories more efficiently. DIN BIL is the VW owned dealer group and the largest seller of new and used cars in the country and has recently entered into a partnership with Autorola Sweden.

A fully integrated management system for handling part exchange cars coming into the group is being adopted, managing external suppliers via an online order module and monitoring the used car inventory in line with the current used car market.

It’s an exciting time for the new and used car industry in Sweden and times are definitely changing. Those dealers and asset owners that are embracing online marketing and remarketing techniques with the latest market data mining tools are set to cut costs and sell more cars, with a guaranteed increase in their profitability.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 14 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie works across the magazine portfolio and updates the company websites with daily news, interviews and road test content.

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