CarGurus recently released a survey that found trust to be a leading factor for consumers when shopping for expensive purchases, such as cars.
“Survey respondents indicated that the car shopping process is very much in need of increased transparency if dealers are to win the trust of Canadian car shoppers,” the car research and shopping site said in a news release announcing the survey.
When asked which major purchases, such as a car, home, mortgage or event tickets yielded the most transparent information on price, CarGurus said: “only obtaining a mortgage (7 percent) fared worse than car buying (9 percent).”
More than a third of Canadians' trust in a seller fades away if the store price is greater than what they read advertised online, according to the survey.
23 percent of respondents said a detailed cost breakdown would increase their trust in a seller and 31 percent said they determine trustworthiness by word of mouth.
Consumers use both price information and customer reviews to make their opinions and decisions, the survey found.
Nearly half of Canadians rely on customer reviews to determine if a website is trustworthy, according to CarGurus.
Additionally, 40 percent of survey respondents said when researching expensive items online the appearance of both positive and negative customer reviews make the process more transparent and trustworthy.
"Establishing trust goes a long way with consumers, particularly those making big purchases," CarGurus senior vice president of consumer marketing Sarah Welch said. "In our experience at CarGurus, we've seen just how much transparency – providing reliable, easily accessible customer reviews, engaging with negative reviews and keeping updated price information across online inventory platforms – enhances the consumer shopping experience, and in turns benefits dealers."