New Study from daVinci Payments Shows What’s Driving Prospective Vehicle Buyers

To increase high-value customer engagement, dealerships should consider low-cost virtual incentives

CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A recent study conducted by daVinci Payments found that customers in the market for a new vehicle can be significantly incentivized to take a test drive or visit the dealership for vehicle service on a continued basis, by pairing these activities with a prepaid monetary reward. With 49 percent of those surveyed intending to purchase a vehicle in the next 18 months, this study provides dealerships with insights on how to encourage customers to push past intent to purchase a vehicle, as well as retain those customers after the point of sale for ongoing parts and services transactions.

The study also finds that respondents prefer open-loop prepaid rewards to retailer gift cards or repair discounts. This response extends to a preference for receiving a lower-valued prepaid reward over additional dollars off of the vehicle sticker price or monthly lease rate.

Key findings from the study include:

  • 92 percent of intenders (those planning to buy a new vehicle in the next 18 months) said they would use a $25 virtual prepaid reward that was texted to their phone after a test drive
  • 89 percent of intenders would use a special service offer that accompanies a prepaid reward
  • 53 percent of intenders would prefer getting a $15 prepaid reward for each scheduled maintenance visit rather than receiving a 10-percent discount on each maintenance appointment
  • 50 percent of Generation Z and Millennials would bring their car to the dealership for recall prevention maintenance for a $35 prepaid reward upon arrival

With only 30 percent of the average dealership’s revenues coming from vehicle sales and the larger portion of annual revenue coming from service contracts and parts and service sales, daVinci’s study highlights the opportunity to use open-loop prepaid rewards to increase repeat revenue and grow existing customer bases. For example, dealerships see a 10 percent increase in closing rates when taking a prospective customer on a test drive, therefore, a minimal investment in monetary rewards used as an incentive to take a test drive, can result in significant vehicle sales that in turn can drive service when offers accompany test drive rewards.

Even Gen Z and Millennials, who are notoriously difficult to steer towards brick-and-mortar, deem a prepaid reward incentive enough to bring their vehicle in for recall prevention maintenance. As dealers know, every face-to-face touchpoint with a buyer serves to build the relationship and present new opportunities to upgrade the client’s driving experience.

“It’s difficult to ignore that 92 percent of those who intend to buy a car in the next 18 months would complete a test drive for as little as 25 dollars on a virtual prepaid card,” said Rodney Mason, daVinci Payments’ Chief Revenue Officer. “Their propensity to accept and use virtual rewards and special offers that accompany them, provides dealers with much greater flexibility and value in executing incentives vs. just a few years ago.”

For more details, you can see the full study here.

About daVinci Payments

daVinci Payments is leading the payments movement to greater value through high-impact brand connections at the intersection of the payment. daVinci optimizes fast corporate-funded payments to businesses, their customers, employees, contractors, participants and channel partners through virtual, digital and physical card payments in 160+ countries, 17 languages and 10 currencies. daVinci is owned by Syncapay, a holding company investing in the new frontier of payments.


Julia Carder

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