For years consumers have longed for a way to purchase a new or used car or truck
having to go to an auto dealership. Auto dealers have disguised their selling techniques in an attempt to convince consumers that their process’ had changed, but the truth is they haven’t.
Retail has seen a dramatic shift in recent years. Where you once visited the store for consumer goods, now almost anything can be delivered without you getting off the couch. The cause of this change, the Internet.
Although the consumer side of the web has been around 20+ years, it’s really only in the last five years folks have felt comfortable shopping for almost everything, except cars. So why aren’t we able to purchase a car online yet? It’s not that the technology doesn’t exist, it has for some time. The main reason is that most auto sales are based on deception, how much information can the dealer keep from the consumer and still have them buy a car. However, online transparency is King, so dealers have resisted.
Sure you can shop for a car online, but all those advertisements are just reconfigured television, radio or newspaper ads. Old media is alive and well in the car world. The tens of thousands that use to attend Auto Shows every year has dropped to mere thousands. Taking a Saturday to go car shopping is a thing of the past. Every detail of every new or used car is online for us to see, but we still have to go to a car dealer to buy one.
So, is there a way to buy a new car online and have it delivered? What about a used car? One company has cracked the code, ClearShift.
ClearShift was founded on the principle that people do want to buy a car online. It was modeled after great online retailers such as Amazon. Similar to Amazon, at ClearShift there is no store to go shop at. Today dealerships can cost $40 million, and who pays for that big beautiful building? You and I, the consumers that buy there.
At ClearShift cars are kept in inexpensive warehouses and storage lots to keep prices low, just like Amazon. Detailed descriptions are available online with dozens of pictures. ClearShift even places the inspection forms completed by certified technicians online for you to see. Total transparency.
ClearShift takes the next step that others don’t, the ability to actually buy the car online. Once you’ve decided on your vehicle, you enter your information in a secure web form. From there the experts at ClearShift go to work inspecting your trade-information to give the highest possible value. They assess your credit sending it to the bank or credit union that will provide the lowest interest rate and you’re presented the lowest possible payment that fits your budget.
Now it's your turn to approve the terms of the sale. Online documents are prepared that can be signed on your computer or phone. You won’t wait an hour to see the dealership's manager, only to have him spend another hour trying to sell you things you don’t want. Once you’ve “signed” your electronic documents, you choose a time and location to have your new car delivered, and your trade picked up. Whether you chose home, your workplace or even Starbucks, the vehicle you purchased online will be delivered by a product specialist.
You may ask “How do I get my paperwork?” The folks at ClearShift thought of that as well. When you signed your documents you also opened your owner's web page; a page created for your car's information alone. This page includes your paperwork, maintenance history and recommended future maintenance. You’ll even receive notifications to keep your vehicle in tip-top condition.
You bought a car online and it took minutes not hours. You had as much or as little contact as desired. You weren’t chased around a lot by a salesman begging you to pay too much. You bought an SUV online in the time you wanted to spend. You bought a truck armed with all the information you needed. You pulled the trigger when you felt comfortable. The vehicle you bought online was delivered when and where you chose.
Congratulations, you just bought a car online!