The youngest respondents surveyed by Urban Science and Harris Poll averaged 3.8 brick-and-mortar dealership visits before purchasing, more than twice as many as baby boomers. 
 - Photo by Daria Shevtsova via Pexels

The youngest respondents surveyed by Urban Science and Harris Poll averaged 3.8 brick-and-mortar dealership visits before purchasing, more than twice as many as baby boomers.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova via Pexels

DETROIT — A new Urban Science survey of 2,000 American car buyers and 200 auto dealers finds the great majority (81%) trust the information delivered by franchise dealership personnel and that the youngest respondents tend to visit the highest number of dealerships before purchasing.

The survey, undertaken in partnership with Harris Poll, found 84% of all respondents chose price as a determining factor in their choice of dealership. But quality of service (75%) also weighed heavily in their decisions, along with low-pressure sales and staff experience (both 72%).

Remarkably, members of Generation Z and young millennials reported visiting the most brick-and-mortar dealerships, averaging 3.8 stores per purchase — more than older millennials (2.6), Gen X (2.4), and baby boomers (2.1).

“That's one of the important findings of this from a dealer standpoint,” said Randy Berlin, Urban Science’s global director of dealer services, in a conversation with Automotive News’ David Muller. “Right now all the data or so-called studies provided to the industry indicate that customers are visiting only like 1.2 dealers. This research is saying quite the opposite.”

Offering further encouragement to dealers, 83% of respondents said they would “never” buy before test-driving and 89% said the demo was the “most influential resource” in their decisionmaking process.

“… This kind of goes against the belief of the "do everything online, have it just delivered to my house" — 85% of the consumers surveyed here said they would not buy a vehicle without seeing it physically first. So again, value of the dealer there,” Berlin said.

To read the Automotive News article, click here.

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