The four ‘Rs’ still important for consumers

The four 'Rs' of reputation, relationships, recommendations and rapport are still important influencers in consumer car buying decisions. The four ‘Rs’ still important for consumers

This was according to a survey by

Almost a third (30%) of the consumers who took part in the survey said having confidence in the dealer influenced their decision where to buy a car from. In support of this, 36% of respondents said whether they had heard of the dealer and whether it had been recommended by other car buyers was important, and almost a fifth (18%) said whether they had a good rapport with the dealer was important.

When asked what was the most desired improvement to the car buying experience, if you take the most obvious answers of price (17%) and choice (16%) out of the equation, honesty and confidence in the salesperson (15%) and improved customer service (12%) were the next most important factors.

In response to the results, director of dealer insight at Peter Watts said that dealers can benefit from using soft skills at the point-of-sale.

Watts said: “Our research indicates that, on initial contact with the dealer, the consumer has already decided after hours of research that the vehicle they have selected will fit their lifestyle and financial requirements. Therefore, dealers can benefit by switching their focus to helping the customer validate their decision using soft skills in order to cement the sale.

“Quick and simple measures, such as ensuring the timings for test drives suit the customer’s personal and work schedule and delivering an aligned online / offline experience, will further strengthen the consumer’s confidence in the salesperson, which helps to assist a more enjoyable purchasing journey.”

Watts added: “These findings highlight the importance of aligning the basics around price and choice with softer skills, making sure everyone within a dealership who is responsible for sales is also focused on delivering the very best customer service. The benefits of building a strong reputation should not be overlooked and securing solid customer recommendations is still key.”

The research by was carried out with more than 700 consumers across the UK.