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Digital used vehicle buying activity rockets

Dealers are significantly ramping up their use of digital channels to source and buy stock – with one in three vehicles sales at Aston Barclay taking place online in Q3 2019.

Daren Wiseman, digital strategy director at Aston Barclay

The firm’s data, published just days after Manheim reported soaring online sales, also shows vehicle web views during Q3 rose by 61.8% – reaching their highest level this year – as buyers turn to digital channels to gain a competitive advantage in a very strong used car market.

Q3 also saw a 50% increase in mobile bids, with more buyers bidding for stock during the ‘summer holiday season’ via the Buyer’s App, particularly in August.

Within the auction halls, bids fell during Q3 as a result of the summer slowdown, although conversion rates remained above 90%.

Meanwhile, Aston Barclay’s Cascade suite of remarketing solutions, launched this year under its ongoing digital transformation, is attracting an increasing number of vendors, with some now converting over 50% of their used car stock upstream, prior to a physical sale, resulting in a reduction in stocking days from 5.58 to 1.8 days.

Daren Wiseman, who joined Aston earlier this year to head up digital solutions, said: “Dealer buying habits are continually changing as they fight to buy the very best used stock.

“In the current market where demand is very strong, buyers are putting themselves in the box seat by using technology to search and bid on the best quality stock while still attending some auctions.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 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. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.