Have you had trouble reaching Generation Z customers? We’ve seen dealerships (and just about every other type of business) struggling to reach this specific generation with traditional sales techniques. These young buyers are anti-advertising and value authentic connections with the brands they buy from. How does this play into the world of automotive sales? What can car dealerships do to cater to this generation that will soon account for 75% of vehicle sales?
Here are some quick facts about Gen Z:
- They were born between 1997 and 2012
- They make up 20.2% of the population
- They represent $360 billion in purchasing power
- 88% of them plan to purchase a car in the next five years
To many of us, 1997 doesn’t seem that long ago. We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but people born that year are now 26 years old and they mark the oldest of the Generation Z demographic. These young people have a lot of buying power and are eager to either buy a new vehicle or purchase their very first car within the next five years. In fact, a study performed by Experian showed Millennials and Gen Z as the only two generational segments of the automotive industry seeing growth. However, tried-and-true sales tactics have proven largely ineffective with this diverse and socially conscious group of young adults. With Gen Z representing so much revenue in the near future, dealerships need to rethink the way they engage and build relationships with these customers.
It’s also important to consider what Gen Z customers value in a car—it’s quite different than what older generations looked for. Gen Z buyers don’t have much brand loyalty, but they are drawn to brands that reflect their own values and personality. Safety features rank high in what this demographic looks for in cars, along with eco-friendliness and brands with socially conscious business practices.
Don’t forget that while Generation Z is very much online, they also value a positive in-person experience when it comes to actually purchasing their vehicle. Once you’ve captured their interest online, you want to seal the deal with a memorable and genuine interaction at the dealership.
Here are four tips on how you can tailor the car-buying experience to Gen Z:
- Use technology to add value
It’s no surprise that 83% of Gen Z uses social media to shop. This generation grew up with access to the internet and user-friendly technology assisting them every step of the way. Not only do they expect your business to be online, but they’ve also grown accustomed to an intuitive, user-friendly interface for important information and helpful instruction when they need it. Think mobile-friendly websites, chatbots, real-time notifications, automatic status updates and product information that’s easy to understand.
Gen Zers are always online and very self-sufficient, therefore an intuitive online shopping experience is right up their alley. However, implementing dated, confusing or cumbersome technology will repel these buyers. Make sure that the technology you employ is functional and useful above all else.
- Build a robust, informative vehicle details page
Be as thorough as possible with the details on your listing so shoppers can make an informed decision before they have to send an email or pick up the phone. Your vehicle description page should include everything a potential buyer needs to make an informed decision on whether or not that car is a good fit for them. This is where web-centric car-buying platforms have really excelled and it’s been effective in bringing them business from young car buyers. To keep up with online-only retailers, some dealerships have implemented Montway’s Home Delivery Solution to expand their audience and stand out from the competition.
If a shopper is unsure or inconvenienced while browsing online, they could pass up what would otherwise be the ideal car for them. A study on Gen Z car buyers revealed that “71% say that they need to be aware of all the buying options available to them – making them more likely to engage with competitors and more likely to buy based on research than brand reputation.”
Tools like Montway’s home delivery widget gives customers estimated shipping costs that appeal to young, tech-savvy car buyers.
- Be transparent
When it comes to price, timelines and everything in between, these shoppers want an honest answer up front. Gen Zers are digital natives, so they’re great at scouring the internet for prices, deals, discounts and reviews. In fact, 52% of Gen Z prefer shopping online and are extremely perceptive when it comes to sniffing out phony sales tactics or inauthentic marketing techniques. If a product or brand isn’t honest about what it has to offer, Gen Z shoppers are likely to leave it in favor of something more transparent.
Save them time and build a good rapport right off the bat by being upfront about what you have to offer. Even if your prices are a bit higher or your lead times are longer than the competition, sharing that with potential buyers instills confidence and can even position your dealership as a more premium business.
- Provide auto transport
No matter what generation you’re selling to, a logistics partner can get the cars you need to your lots quickly. With a nationwide carrier network specializing in single-unit moves, dealerships trust Montway to deliver their vehicles safely and efficiently.
Learn how Montway helps dealerships reach more customers and move cars efficiently by speaking with a vehicle shipping advisor at 888-998-4161.