Online Finance Management Appeals to British Car Buyers
A new report has found that most people in the UK who are looking to buy a car on finance would prefer to be able to manage this process online.
The study, commissioned by Intelligent Environments, revealed that many consumers were fed up of not being able to access any aspect of their finance deal digitally, according to Motor Trader. As a result, analysts believe that finance firms need to make changes to the way they operate in order to satisfy the expectations of modern, web-savvy customers.
48 per cent of respondents said that when buying a new car the aspect of the process which they found most taxing was the finance. 32 per cent admitted that they had chosen not to buy a car in the past because of the amount of time that picking the right finance package and getting it approved can take.
In terms of the changes that consumers would like to see made, 48 per cent said that online car finance sign-ups would be more likely to convince them to take advantage of this type of deal. 56 per cent said that they would subsequently prefer to have online access to management tools as part of their finance service.
44 per cent said that by moving to an online-first approach to finance, they would be better able to deal with loan payments and could fulfil their obligations to lenders sooner rather than later. Half of those questioned said that they were generally disappointed with the lack of visibility of online car finance services.
Report spokesperson David Webber explained that modern consumers are intimately familiar with the benefits of the internet, using it to shop for everything from groceries to home electronics. And these experiences have led to a growing demand from car buyers for the finance industry to take action and embrace the digital age rather than shunning it.
Webber said that traditional processes were limiting the appeal of car finance, since consumers were unhappy about the amount of time and effort which has to be put into completing and retaining paperwork. In an age when many other industries have become almost entirely paperless when it comes to engaging with customers, it is easy to see why these frustrations arise.
The upshot of this is that emerging car finance companies which do offer online services and are often primarily oriented around web-based operations are causing disruption in the marketplace and putting incumbent providers on the back foot. Webber believes that this could leave traditional firms floundering in the wake of innovative newcomers as the digital boom continues.
He went on to point out that consumers are not alone in insisting upon a digitally led approach to procuring and managing car finance; those within the industry itself are also coming around to this idea, largely because it often means that customers are more inclined to remain loyal when they make subsequent car purchases.
Car finance has never been more important in the UK, with PCP packages and other innovative products helping to fuel the growth of new car sales in recent years. This means that while finance remains an obstacle for some consumers, most are becoming far more familiar with the ins and outs of the industry.
With familiarity comes an understanding of the inadequacies associated with old practices. And as this study makes clear, firms cannot afford to fall behind the times.
Ultimately, this means that car finance providers will need to continue to invest in digital services, migrating parts of their business which were once tied solely to physical documents so that they can operate in the online marketplace. Meanwhile, consumers will be able to make use of the web to compare car finance offers, seek out the best deal and sign up to a package with a firm that is capable of meeting their needs in the modern world.