When Buying a Car Online is as Easy as Buying Swiffer Refills
The ETA was 45 minutes for the tow truck to come to retrieve my car, which had died in the middle of four traffic lanes during rush hour. I felt the bead of sweat drip from my chin and watched as it seemed to immediately evaporate once it hit the scorching asphalt under my feet.
My wife and I had been discussing the WANT for a bigger vehicle to accommodate her business, our two small kids, and our dog. All of a sudden, that WANT was a NEED.
I needed a truck; She needed a... mini-van. Ultimately we "compromised" and bought a... mini-van.
Online shopping has been a thing for many years. However, the concept of making such a significant purchase exclusively online is still a new idea to many. I know this because ALL of our friends wanted to know about our experience, and had many questions about the process. After all, nobody ever asks us about our experience buying diapers online, but when it's a vehicle...
Here are the 3 reasons I have recommended CARVANA to everyone who's asked (and some who haven't.)
It's LOW RISK
The biggest myth regarding the advantage of buying a vehicle in person vs online is that being in-person allows you to experience and inspect the vehicle. This was something that my wife and I discussed briefly but were instantly satisfied with the website's attention to detail in calling out every blemish, scratch, and defect with clearly visible yellow warning triangles.
Our anxiety was further eased by the "7-day Money Back Guarantee". If we were unsatisfied for any reason, we could return the car and get our money back. A friend of mine purchased a... mini-van from a dealer several years ago and on their way home, a piece of the window trim flew off on the highway. They called the dealer and were given price quotes to replace and install the piece. This wasn't even an hour after driving the vehicle off the lot! They were essentially told it's their problem now. Knowing that we had seven days to put the vehicle through its paces gave us peace of mind.
After searching all the nooks and crannies in the vehicle, we were unable to locate the headphones for the back seat passenger entertainment system. We double-checked the listing and found that 2 pairs were supposed to come with the purchase. When we saw they would be an additional $100 to purchase ourselves, we contacted customer support about the issue, and they simply sent a check to fix the error.
It's about the CUSTOMER
My wife and I raved not only to our friends but to each other for weeks about how we FELT after the purchase. We FELT like this company made us a priority. While we were answering questions online, there was an agent available in real-time to answer questions. Afterward, we received a phone call to confirm the purchase, and walk us through the delivery process.
They delivered it to our driveway and the technician literally had a smile the entire time she was unloading the... mini-van. She waited patiently as we kicked the tires, test drove it, examined the interior, and basked in the excitement that a new (to us) car can bring.
Satisfied with our purchase, albeit still anxious about not only purchasing a used vehicle but doing so in such an unconventional way, the technician reiterated to us the "7-day Money Back Guarantee".
The day my car died was the day my wife had just started feeling better after being incredibly sick for 4 days (She had gone to the doctor and tested negative for Covid-19). Although she felt better, her body was still fatigued. She had no desire to go to a dealership with 2 kids, and spend half a day if not the full day going through the whole dog-and-pony show with the sales and financing department.
From the comfort of our couch. we browsed and shopped for the perfect... mini-van. We answered the questions, provided the requested documents, and before nap time was over, we had scheduled the delivery date for 4 days later. (They offered to deliver within 2 days, on a Saturday, but we were not going to be home).
With our spare time, we logged into Amazon and purchased spare Swiffer refills just as easily as we had just purchased a... mini-van (which arrived before the Swiffer refills, by the way!)