CARFAX Canada Driving Insights


How to Help Your Customers Enjoy the Used Car Buying Process

Fri, Jan 8, 2021

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As Canadian car dealership managers and staff, you have a tough job – helping millions of Canadians find the perfect car for them. We asked Canadians how they felt about the used car buying process and found that only 51% said they enjoy it. So, what is causing people to not enjoy buying a car, and what can you do to help improve the process for all these unhappy customers?

Trust has been broken

Canadians are already stressed out about their vehicle purchase, 9 out of 10 agree that buying a used car is major decision. In an unusual twist, being an experienced car buyer could even make things worse, as 47% of Canadian used car buyers say they’ve had a bad car buying experience previously. So, which parts of the process are causing this negative perspective? We found that 71% of used car buyers believe that dealerships take advantage of people when they’re buying their car. One of the leading contributors this feeling is that 66% of customers think that they’re being rushed to buy at a dealership. What can you do to help?

#1: Take it slow

Canadians want time to think about things. 88% of used car buyers said they want to take their time when buying a vehicle. Take time to help your customers think through any objections and understand what could help them arrive at a decision. Then ask for the sale once the customer knows they’re getting exactly what they want, or pivot to another option if the vehicle isn’t the right choice.

#2: Educate them about the vehicle

When we asked used car buyers if they feel comfortable evaluating the condition of used car, 48% said that they don’t. That provides an opportunity to be their guide in evaluating a unit. Let your customer get to know the vehicle by guiding them through the history of it and make sure they get behind the wheel. Ensure your process validates that they’re getting a great unit, that way they feel like they’ve taken the right steps.

#3: Make negotiating easier

51% of used car buyers don’t like negotiating the price of their car. Don’t push your customers into a back and forth negotiation, instead focus on price justification. After all, they likely came to you because you have a good price to begin with, and you’ve already shown them they’re getting a great unit that meets their needs. Explain how you’ve arrived at your competitive pricing and the value included in that price. When a customer knows your price is justified, they won’t feel taken advantage of.


At the end of the day, your customer is the most important person on the lot. Take the time to handle their objections, educate them about the vehicle and help them understand the reasoning behind the price. This will help you not only close the deal, but also create happy car buyers who will return to your dealership and refer their friends.


Explore how our research can be applied at your dealership to help you win more business - request a consultation with a CARFAX Canada Rep:

Driving Insights
Driving Insights takes your questions about Canadian car owners and finds the answers! Our proprietary research looks closely at the motives and behaviours of today’s car owners to uncover exclusive insights you won’t find anywhere else. To date, we’ve surveyed over 9,000 Canadians to identify their biggest pain points when buying, selling, and servicing their vehicles. If there’s a question you’d like us to address, email and we’ll get you some answers!

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