Online enquiries for used cars soared 24% in January year on year.
That’s the key finding of research carried out by Dealerweb, which found that online enquiries for new cars grew by 6.5% for the month.
Overall, for new and used cars walk-in and telephone leads fell by 11% and 4%, highlighting how growing numbers of consumers are beginning their car buying journey online.
Dealers are also making greater efforts to drive footfall and sales with outbound calls to prospects up 50%.
Martin Hill, managing director at Dealerweb, said: “New car sales are expected to decline further during the rest of the first quarter of 2018, particularly in comparison with 2017’s record first three months.
“However, our data suggests online enquiry volumes will remain stable or grow, as more consumers initiate the purchase of a vehicle over the internet.
“Dealers are reacting to market pressures by stepping up their outbound prospecting calls, redoubling their efforts to seek out new custom. This more proactive approach to drumming up consumer interest can be made significantly less time-consuming by implementing a robust enquiry management system and follow-up procedures.”