Auto Loans, Smart Spending

Are You Ready to Use Car Shopping Apps?

There comes a point in everyone’s life where they have to purchase a car.  The experience has been deemed by many to be their least favorite shopping experience.  And no wonder, car salesmen are notorious for their high pressure, underhanded, sales tactics (while not all, this has become the stereotype due to a history of it being the norm).  With the evolution of technology, car shopping has become easier.  Online browsing eliminates the sales force tracking you through the lot, and the latest innovation is car shopping apps.  Are you ready?

The online experience has primarily transferred to the handheld device.  People are forgoing the home computer and opting for the tablet and smartphone instead.  Tech savvy companies understand this, and in order to become more prevalent to their customers, they are developing apps that cater to them.  Buying a car is no different, and a plethora of car shopping apps have popped up.

Nearly all the big car dealers will have an app soon, if they do not already.  But for those looking for the car shopping app experience now, there are a few to choose from.  They are largely classified sites that advertise for private sellers.

Ebay motors has long been an online destination for those looking for cars.  Their app is highly rated, and helps connect sellers and buyers in a mobile world.

Edmunds also puts out a mobile app.  Here the buyer can not only shop for the car they want, but also compare prices and reviews.  Through one app a shopper can find the best deal, and find out if they are getting a good car.

Craigslist has a mobile app, but it is not specifically for automobiles.  The free site that has been connecting sellers and buyers for years connects to mobile users just as easily.

The list could go on for quite a while.  Kelley Blue Book offers an app to see what your vehicle (or the vehicle you are looking to purchase) is worth, Car Checker offers one that is much like Carfax and allows the buyer to see the history of their used purchase, the app lets you do a comparison of the same vehicle at three different dealers at once, and there are many more.

The new technology is a great benefit to the shopper.  No longer will they have to check on the vehicle, and then go back home to do their research.  Instead, a quick search through various apps, all while on the car lot, will let them compare prices, check valuation, and see if the car has any blemishes on its history.  The biggest question is will the public readily embrace it?  Mobile shopping is still in its infant stages.  I personally am leery about purchasing anything on my smartphone (mostly because it is hard to see all the details and I do not want to get a bad deal).

The actual act of purchasing a car through a car shopping app is a long ways off.  In fact, it may never come to fruition due to the fact that larger purchases require more scrutiny on behalf of the consumer.  But as the number of smartphone users increases, the utilization of these apps will increase.  I know that if I am ever in the market to buy a new (or used) car, I will definitely find a few good (free) apps that I can use to compare prices.