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How Car Buyers Use The Internet

Written By, NowCar Team

Senior Couple Buying Cars Online

Online car buying appears to be the way of the future, so it's no surprise that there's interest in consumer's motives for shopping on the web. The 16th Annual Cars Online report (passed along by Gilbert Shar of dove into some of those interesting questions, and the results provided us with plenty of answers.

Before you decide to start your online car buying experience, get a better understanding of what some of your fellow car buyers are eyeing and prioritizing…

The research ultimately showed that customers want to be as connected as possible. Referred to as the "selfie experience," consumers have prioritized better communication while also having significantly higher expectations. Furthermore, the report showed that consumers are generally loyal to one particular brand, while there's currently a general interest in autonomous driving.

The report also concluded that traditional online resources our now being supplemented by a larger variety of random websites and blogs. Dealer/manufacturer websites are still used by 49% of those polls, and search engines (43%) and traditional dealerships (48%) are also widely referred to. However, mediums like web forums (19%), social media (12%) and phone apps (9%) are being utilized more and more.

While online car shopping would seemingly remove the interaction between a buyer and seller, the results showed that consumers generally want immediate responses. 95% of responders said they expect a response on a request within 24 hours, with 69% of those in grow markets demanding some kind of communication within four hours.

It's not only the younger demographics that are supporting the online marketplace, as Shar notes that "even 'digital natives'" are interested in using the web during their car search. The priorities of the older generations are a bit different, as they prefer some kind of weekly notification regarding the delivery of their vehicle. Furthermore, a large percentage would like the ability to adjust their initial order.

Finally, more and more potential customers are realizing the appeal of connected cars (essentially vehicles that have access to the internet). 49% of responders are currently using or want to use the connected car features, while 80% said they'd certainly consider it when it's time to purchase a new ride.

The internet is clearly become a relied upon source as a consumer is shopping for cars. Whether they use the web to communicate with a dealer, understand more about a targeted vehicle, or to make a purchase, there's no doubt that the industry is going to gradually embrace the internet.

If you're in the market for a vehicle, head over to Not only can you search and build your ideal vehicle, you can also make the purchase online!