After COVID-19: the paradigm shift to digital remarketing

INSIGHT | 12 MAY, 2020

COVID-19. A pandemic that’s rocked the entire world.

People all over the UK have been forced to embrace remote working and new social distancing measures. But what does this mean for fleet owners and dealerships who traditionally rely so heavily on the contact they have with their customers and suppliers?

The physical vehicle remarketing model dates back over 70 years. That’s a long time to be working with long, drawn out processes and vehicles spending weeks in the auction system. Not to mention the sky-high costs accrued through storage, third party inspections and depreciation.

It’s time for us to level with you. Shifting these slow, unproductive processes online, isn’t just necessary, it’s vital.

Now more than ever.

And not just because it will help increase the speed of used vehicles to market. But because in a post-COVID-19 world, it’s the smart thing to do. A world where human contact is limited, where travel is restricted, and people are using the internet more than ever before.

When the lockdown is eventually lifted, fleet owners and dealers will have countless vehicles held up in the system that need to be defleeted. They will need to replenish stocks, but how?

The good news is that the shift to digital has already begun.

It’s true, the rise of some clever, innovative people has meant this isn’t ‘new’ news. The technology to automate and simplify vehicle inspection already exists, as does the ability to attend an auction virtually from anywhere in the world.

With the COVID-19 outbreak spreading fast, we need more technology like this to keep our industry running and effective. Some auction halls might not open for months after the lockdown is lifted. It may be said that the excitement of attending a sale cannot be replicated online, but with technology like virtual reality, it could. And let’s be honest, COVID-19 doesn’t respect emotions anyway.

So, the truth is, there might not be a choice. Bidding on vehicles online is not only more convenient and efficient, it’s safer too.

For us, smart, innovative solutions have always taken the lead. Our mission is about creating faster, smarter and better ways for the automotive industry to work through digital innovation. Our UPSTREAM platform optimises speed to market, reduces days to sell, saves costs, plus much more. It’s fast, and fast saves time and money.

So, what does the future look like?  What else could leasing companies, fleet owners and dealerships be offering to help people?

It’s time for us all to collectively use our creative minds and intuitive thinking to help keep this industry alive. Things like organised pick up and drop off facilities to avoid having to meet people. Or relaxed payment terms and contracts, allowing customers more time to pay off a balance. We will all have to adapt, to think outside the box.

The change starts now. The entire auction and remarketing industry is gearing up. And it’s the paradigm shift which will change the way cars are remarketed in the UK forever.

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