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COVID-19: Tracking U.S. Consumer and Automotive Dealer Sentiment (Issue #18)

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Article Highlights

  1. Consumers are less concerned (or becoming fatigued) over COVID-19 and less apprehensive about visiting dealerships.
  2. Fewer shoppers are in-market now, less because of COVID-19 and more because of cost and financial concerns.
  3. Digital Retailing and new services like service pick-up and delivery provide a rare win-win opportunity for consumers and dealers.

The Cox Automotive Research & Market Intelligence team has published a new round of research on the evolving impact of COVID-19 on consumers and automobile dealers in the U.S. This ongoing research, which sheds light on consumer and dealer attitudes and behaviors during the pandemic, began in late March and is updated regularly.

This 18th report in the series offers a fresh look at how the pandemic is impacting dealer operations. Key takeaways include:

  1. Consumers are less concerned (or becoming fatigued) over COVID-19 and are less apprehensive about visiting dealerships. The level of consumer concern related to COVID-19 dropped to its lowest level since March. As nearly all dealers say they are encouraging social distancing, consumers say the spread of coronavirus is having less of an impact on their likelihood to visit a dealership.
  2. Fewer shoppers are in-market now, less because of COVID-19 and more because of cost and financial concerns. The number of in-market shoppers continues to trend lower since the start of the pandemic. Inventory shortages and high prices are contributing to both fewer shoppers and purchase delays.
  3. Digital Retailing and new services like service pick-up and delivery provide a rare win-win opportunity for consumers and dealers. Consumers love the convenience and efficiency of digital retailing and service pick-up and delivery although dealer adoption lags behind consumer expectations. Few dealers are offering service pick-up and delivery even though nearly all consumers indicate they are satisfied with the experience and dealers could probably charge for it.

To dig deeper or speak to any of the experts at Cox Automotive, reach out to the PR Team.

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