TradePending TV

The Top 3 Reasons People Visit Dealer’s Websites

It’s no surprise that the #1 reason people visit a dealer’s website is to research new and used inventory, but what are the #2 and #3 reasons, and has that changed over time, and what does it all mean?

TradePending 2024 survey of consumers why they visit a dealership website

Take a look at this survey of over 1,200 people. When asked “When visiting an auto dealership’s website, what services would you value?”, number 1 is looking for a car, number 2 is value their trade-in, and number 3 is to figure out what they can afford. 

We’ve been conducting this survey for 8 years, and those top 3 results have not changed. The question then becomes, “If this is what people most want from my site, how good am I at providing that experience?” Two points here.

Get The Info Quickly & Easily

First, the faster that people get what they’re looking for, the more of them you’ll convert into opportunities. Every software vendor strives to make the user experience as easy as possible, but where we confuse ourselves, dealers, and consumers is by misrepresenting the tools and their intended use case, which brings us to the second point. 

Label Your CTAs Correctly

The more intelligently you segment your website visitors into the early stage shoppers versus the more motivated visitors, the more you’ll convert.

That is, label your call-to-action buttons correctly. If someone wants to chat, call that a chat. If someone wants to buy a car online, call that “Buy this car”. Don’t confuse people by asking them to value a trade or calculate a payment only to drop them into a 30 minute process or into a chat that they weren’t expecting. Those people will bounce because we’ve confused them, and confusion is not a good user experience.

When people get all of the information they want, and get it quickly, they’ll reward you with their business.



How has the ranking of the top reasons for visiting a dealership’s website changed over the past 8 years, and what implications does this shift have for dealerships?

Over the past 8 years, the ranking of the top reasons for visiting a dealership’s website has remained consistent. The primary reason is to research new and used inventory, followed by valuing their trade-in, and determining what they can afford. This consistency suggests that these needs are fundamental to consumers’ car-buying journey, and dealerships should prioritize addressing them effectively on their websites.


What strategies can dealerships employ to ensure that their website provides a seamless user experience, particularly in terms of quickly delivering the information visitors are seeking?

Dealerships can employ several strategies to ensure that their website provides a seamless user experience. One key strategy is to optimize the website’s navigation and search functionalities, making it easy for visitors to find the information they need quickly. Additionally, providing clear and concise information on inventory, trade-in valuation tools, and financing options can help streamline the user experience and enhance satisfaction.


What are examples of how mislabeling call-to-action buttons can lead to confusion for website visitors, and what are the potential consequences of this confusion for dealership conversions?

Mislabeling call-to-action buttons can indeed lead to confusion for website visitors, ultimately impacting dealership conversions. For example, if a button labeled “Value Your Trade” instead leads visitors to a lengthy form or a chat option, it can frustrate users who were expecting a straightforward trade-in valuation process. This confusion may cause visitors to abandon the website or seek alternative dealerships with clearer and more transparent user experiences.