Car Buyers and Sellers Amid COVID-19

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When it comes to the automotive industry, the worldwide coronavirus (COVID-19) has changed it in a way that consumers are turning to digital channels while shopping for vehicles. Additionally, the need to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 through social distancing measures has created a shift away from visiting local dealerships themselves.

As for individuals who have not owned a vehicle for transportation purposes in the past, they have been looking at SUVs, cars, and trucks online in order to curb the reliance on ride-sharing and public transportation services.

According to a report by CNBC, there has been a significant demand for used vehicles as well. Pickup trucks have been the most sought-after, while some individuals have travelled hundreds of miles to get a specific vehicle regardless of cost. 

The report referred to Chuck Schmidt as an example, as he was willing to travel across five states in order to purchase a 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 1500. 

“I saw the truck on the internet Thursday morning and called the dealership,” Schmidt told CNBC. “It was exactly what I was looking for and I bought it Friday afternoon.” 

He added that he paid $22,000 for the vehicle at the Toyota in Lee’s Summit located in  Kansas City, Missouri. Schmidt travelled all the way from Spokane, Washington. 

According to the report, there are two factors in such a trend tied to the COVID-19 pandemic. Firstly, when automakers shut down their plants from both Canada and Mexico, the supply of new vehicle models became restricted. 

Secondly, as North America emerged from the initial surge of the COVID-19 situation, individuals who did not have a vehicle before decided that it was time to purchase one. This would allow them to get from place to place without having to rely on transportation services that involved encounters with large groups of people. 

“In the space of two months, prices went from double-digit declines to double-digit gains, and have stayed high since June,” Tom Kontos, an economist at KAR Global Analytics Research, noted. 

KAR Global Analytics Research also found that the average cost reached an all-time high at $21,557 when it came to  full-size pickup vehicles. Compared to February, that accounted for a 31.5% increase. 

As the worldwide pandemic continues to change the needs and shopping habits of consumers, it is imperative that merchants are up-to-date with the latest trends. This may encompass new technologies offered by payment processing solutions that help make transactions go more smoothly.

Merchant Broker is here to help businesses in this regard. To receive more information, contact a professional at either 1-888-668-0733 or info@merchantbroker.com.

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