A Guide to Buying a Vehicle Online

A Guide to Buying a Vehicle Online

Posted on Friday, February 17, 2017

Buying a new car online can fit anybody’s style.

Where should you start when buying a new car online? People like the convenience of shopping online, but cars tend to be the kind of purchase you want to try before you hit the road. So if you want to shop online, here’s how to buy with confidence.

Aggregators Vs. Direct Sales

There are two types of car-buying sites online. The first is the “digital dealership,” also called “direct sales.” The concept is self-explanatory; they have the cars online and you buy from them. The other kind is a “dealership aggregator,” which doesn’t sell cars directly. Instead, dealerships constantly update the site with their inventory and their preferred prices, and you can browse the site to find the deal you like and take up with the dealership from there.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages. Direct sales sites can offer theoretical unlimited selection because their network is so huge — any sort of car you want with any options you want can be found in a snap. The downside, of course, is that the car might be a few states away, and thus difficult to test drive or examine before it’s delivered. Dealership aggregators put every car in your area right in front of you, making it easy to shop, but sooner or later the dealership will take over. So you’ll need to pick the type of sales technique you prefer.

What To Look For

Car shopping online is a rapidly changing industry, and there is a host of different styles and techniques sites use. Some sites connect cars for sale by owner with buyers and offer inspections to guarantee the car. Some offer tools that let people access the car for a test drive without you needing to turn over the keys. Some offer no-haggle offers to speed up the process. Before using a site, look closely at what it offers and see if it works for you.

Everyone uses the internet to find their car.

At its most basic, though, there are two criteria that you need to examine. The first is the overall stock of the site; the more cars you have to choose from, the better off you’re likely to be. Second is how many brands, in general, they have on the site, which again offers more variety and options.

The Hybrid Approach

Keep in mind, there’s no reason you can’t mix and match approaches. You can use both types of sites to get the data you need to make a purchase, or you can use the internet to find the cars you’re most interested in and track down which of them are available in your area. You can also use them to do your research before you step onto the lot.

The key point is that you don’t need to buy a car the way your parents did. The internet offers so many tools for finding the right car for you, to check the quality of cars, and to comparison shop, that we’re all able to pick out exactly the car you need, find exactly the price you want, and put it in your driveway with ease. If you’re ready to start, subscribe to get alerts on vehicles in your area.