Car showrooms feel safer than supermarkets for 71% of visitors

This is the latest report in a series of weekly updates for industry colleagues from Rachael Prasher, managing director of What Car? and Haymarket Automotive. Quoted poll data is from more than 3000 users.

In last week’s report, we looked at how soon buyers were intending to visit showrooms now they have reopened across the UK. With more than 3000 respondents taking part, 29% said they were intending to visit as soon as they could, while 17% expected to visit within 1-2 weeks.

This time, we wanted to understand more about the actual showroom experience from those to have visited since doors reopened, particularly in relation to the safety measures that staff have put in place. Our latest study contained responses from more than 600 car buyers, all of whom had been to a retailer during the crucial first week of operations.

The results were really encouraging.

When asked to comment on the hygiene measures in place, 96% of car buyers described them as very good or good, with just 4% wanting improvements. Social distancing measures received equally good feedback, with 96% of visitors describing them as either very good or good. Clearly, showrooms have learned the lessons from earlier lockdowns – effective strategies are being implemented and customers feel reassured as a result.

Showroom staff were also found to adhere to their own guidelines, according to 89% of respondents, while overall 96% of those who had visited a dealership said they believe the site was being run in a Covid-safe manner – a huge vote of confidence for retailers.

When asked how they felt their showroom visit compared with going to their local supermarket, 71% said that they felt the dealership had been more Covid-safe than their supermarket, with 26% describing it as equally safe.

Dealers are clearly taking the right precautions. Making consumers feel safe is an important box ticked in the recovery process. As the number of buyers visiting showrooms increases in the coming weeks, it is important that showrooms do not relax their social distancing and hygiene measures.

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