2020 has been a year like no other. The pandemic has recalibrated the way we live our lives.
In a year of uncertainty, one thing remains certain—nothing will be the same again.
The speed of change has been rapid. Just consider how quickly home working and video meetings became normalised after the March lockdown.
Previously unquestioned ways of doing business have been challenged and changed forever.
Take the automotive world, a sector paradoxically driven by the latest digital advances but weighed down in parts of the supply chain by legacy analogue thinking.
Yet this year, we have witnessed a fundamental shift in the way vehicles are sourced and sold, with new approaches replacing traditional ways.
The Shift to Online Remarketing
As an online remarketing specialist, ADESA UK has long talked about the inevitable shift from physical to digital.
Early adopters got this concept and have been successfully buying and selling vehicles online since we launched UPSTREAM in the UK.
But, there was understandable resistance from vendors and dealers more comfortable with the familiarity of auction halls. After all, they’d always done it that way.
The pandemic has been the catalyst to accelerate the transition to digital. And there is no going back.
The Vendor Journey
With physical auction halls closed since the first national lockdown, the only way for vendors to defleet and dealers to restock has been to go online.
And it has worked.
Businesses, leasing companies, finance houses, rental firms and OEMs needing to defleet end of contract vehicles have benefitted from the time and cost savings associated with online remarketing.
At a time when cashflow has become even more critical, the fast defleeting of assets has helped boost bottom lines.
The Dealer Journey
Dealers who had previously told us they would never buy stock unseen, online, have dipped their toes in the water and discovered just how easy, convenient and efficient digital remarketing can be for them.
It’s also a better fit for their businesses. This year’s lockdowns, firebreaks and circuit breaks have prompted dealers to future-proof the way they do business by offering online Click & Collect and Home Delivery services.
With customers encouraged to go online to interact and buy cars from dealers, sourcing stock digitally is now increasingly seen as a smarter end-to-end process.
Used Car Trends
With the new car market in decline since peaking in 20161, we anticipate an even more robust demand for used cars.
We saw it with the 4.4% growth in year-on-year used car transactions in Q3 of this year reported by the SMMT2.
With long waits for many new models, following the gradual reopening of car plants worldwide, coupled with high demand for affordable cars from new buyers looking at alternatives to public transport, the used market bounced back into life from July after declining in Q1 and Q2.
With the closing months of the year traditionally seeing lower activity levels, all eyes are now on a strong start to the New Year.
Delivering the Paradigm Shift
The long-mooted paradigm shift from physical to digital remarketing is no longer a talking point. It’s happening right now.
ADESA UK has pioneered the digital-first approach to remarketing, and our sole focus is proving prescient as lockdowns and social distancing rules have pivoted our entire industry to abandon traditional operations and instead follow us online.
This year online remarketing has experienced exponential growth, and we believe this will carry into 2021 and beyond.
ADESA UK will continue to be at the forefront by delivering the very best in digital innovation with our multi-award-winning services3 and the rollout of new solutions to meet your remarketing needs.