Online vs. Dealership: Which is Better for Buying Used Cars in 2024?

Online vs. Dealership Which is Better for Buying Used Cars in 2024

Let’s face it: as consumers, we’ve become more and more dependent on the Internet to buy things. Whether it’s groceries, clothes, or some obscure item you can’t find locally, you can find it on the Web. So, what about buying used cars online? Is it safe? Is the process too complicated, or does it just simplify the entire process? Here’s a look at online used car shopping vs. a dealership.

Advantages of Buying Used Cars Online

There are actually several advantages to buying used cars online over going to a dealership. First, it is convenient. You don’t have to go driving all over the place to find the car you’re looking for, and you can do it at your own pace. There’s no pressure from a salesperson to make a decision. Shopping online also puts you in a position where you have a larger pool of vehicles to choose from. This not only makes it easier to find what you want, but it can also mean that you may find it at a lower price.

Yes, there are Disadvantages to Shopping Online

While the advantages of online shopping are enticing, there are some drawbacks that you might want to consider. If you shop and buy online and then have the car delivered, you don’t get to see or drive the car until it’s sitting in your driveway. Many online car dealerships have a return policy, but it’s a whole other process to go through. There’s also less room for negotiation when shopping online. Without a salesperson to bargain with, you end up paying the sticker price.

Want to Buy Used Cars at a Dealership? Here Are the Advantages

Going through the traditional process of driving to the dealership and shopping in person still has some benefits. You get to see the car up close and take it out for a test drive to make sure you like how it feels. And this all takes place before you sign the paperwork. When you buy from a person at a dealership, you can also negotiate the price. Car dealerships usually have some wiggle room on the sticker price, and you can take advantage of this when you shop in person.

Reasons to Skip Going to the Dealership

Just like shopping online, there are some drawbacks to going to a dealership to shop for used cars. It can be a hassle to go to dealership after dealership looking for the car you want. Even if you check out the website first, when you get there, you might find that the car you want is not available or not what you’re looking for.

Going to a dealership also means you have to deal with the extra pressure of a salesperson who wants to make a sale. Some dealerships are better than others, and you might have a great experience, but there are some used car dealerships that have pushy salespeople. Just remember, you can walk away at any time and make the drive to the next dealership.


This post may contain affiliate links. Meaning a commission is given should you decide to make a purchase through these links, at no cost to you. All products shown are researched and tested to give an accurate review for you.

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