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The Rise of Car Purchasing Apps

Headshot of a man with a blurred background By Ben Reiland January 8, 2021

Categories: Mobile Workforce Motus Arrivers

Buying a car through an app seems like a wild idea. Sure, we purchase food and clothes, even flights and furniture as we scroll through our phones. But car purchasing apps? Buying a car is a pretty big commitment. And one of the biggest downsides of purchasing something online is, you kind of have to wait until it arrives before you know it works out. A vehicle is something you want to buy in person, right? Well, 2020 has proved that isn’t necessarily the case.  

According to J.D. Power’s annual studycar buyers adapted to the pandemic, purchasing vehicles online with little reservation and a great deal of satisfaction. And that’s hardly a surprise. Most people begin their vehicle buying journey by researching potential purchases online. As convenience has risen, car purchasing apps like Rodo and Carvana have risen to meet the demands of the American public. Manufacturers like Nissan and Ford also joined the trend, rolling out their own online ordering platforms. 

Online retail has been growing rapidly over the past decade, and expansion into vehicle sales is a natural progression. A growing number of people are using car purchasing apps for a number of reasons. The benefit of purchasing a vehicle you might not have spotted in a dealership lot, avoiding a potentially lengthy in-person visit and receiving your vehicle at the safety of your own home, all these factors contribute to the decision-making process. We have two stories from employees at Motus to share. 

Start to Finish in Four Days 

After thinking about it and having our plans pushed back several times throughout 2020, my fiancé and I decided to finally get a new car. We went through the online car-leasing process with Rodo and it couldn’t have been simpler. We already had an idea of what kind of car we wanted. Using the Rodo app and website, we shopped for cars on Saturday in our PJs, chose a car on Sunday while drinking our coffee (still in our PJs), woke up on Monday to see I was approved for the car and by Tuesday afternoon I had a brand new car in my driveway! The Rodo reps connected with me throughout the entire process—even bringing some prices down for me—and followed up after the keys were in my hands. Overall, I was very pleased with the experience. I would 100% buy a car online through them again. – Aerica Lovett, Graphic Designer 

Road Bumps 

While I did not use Rodo, the process with the car purchasing app I did use was simple. As promised, it was one stop shopping, completely online. I chose the car, saw details for the car (including the Carfax report, any imperfections on the car), and completed financing within minutes. The entire process took maybe one to one and a half hours to complete. They emailed and sent messages to me every step of the way, and they offered a seven-day money back guarantee, and up to 400 miles usage within that time. The car was delivered less than a week laterwhich was great. 

Unfortunately, this vehicle was not a great fit for me, so I returned the car and received my money back. Going into the purchase, I feared that I wouldn’t receive what I signed up for. Unfortunately, this came true. However, I am trying again, this time through a vendor with a better reputation. – Dawn Romvari, Marketing Specialist 

Is using a car purchasing app for me?  

It very well could be! According to a What Car? Survey, 28% of those surveyed felt comfortable purchasing a vehicle completely online, while 35% would be comfortable skipping the show room experience, opting for a virtual tour of their desired vehicle insteadUsing a vehicle purchasing app mighnot be for everyone. Even those who have enjoyed every other app-based convenience may not find it the right fit. And that’s okay.  

If you’re considering using a car purchasing app, be sure to go through the same steps you would when purchasing a vehicle in person. See if they have the right vehicle for you. Determine if the price is acceptable. Sort out who you’ll be financing through. Also, be sure to look into their returns policyDo that, as you would with any other vehicle purchase, and you can certainly enjoy the benefits of using a car buying app.  

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