When businesses were forced to shut down to abide by mandatory health orders during the height of Covid, survival meant creating experiences to mirror in-person shopping. Small and large companies might have previously offered an online storefront, but car dealerships might not have embraced the online shopping trend until mandates forced their hand.
Consumers spend hours online researching and shopping for a car. Now that dealerships have pivoted to online options, keeping customers engaged on their website might be a key point to converting sales. Imagery adds to the shopping experience. Car dealership websites should include the best stock images: cars, interactive content and color options, too.
Stock Photos Can Boost Sales by Enhancing the User Experience
Stock images don’t necessarily boost sales on their own. However, stock images can help enhance the user experience on a dealership’s website; they also can add an eye-catching detail to online carousel ads and even social media content.
Today’s consumers want to engage. Retail Dive reported that a Snapchat survey revealed that more than 90 percent of Generation Z want to use augmented reality for shopping.
Younger consumers who have grown up with technology might easily embrace these changes and expect businesses to do the same. Augmented reality could be the future of e-commerce, and Gen Z might be leading the AR shopping revolution.
Standard photography of products is an expectation most consumers have for most businesses that sell consumer goods. Customers want to see what they’re buying. However, today’s customers also might want businesses to go farther with imagery and content.
Photos are one-dimensional, but now businesses offer augmented reality and even virtual reality experiences that let customers engage with 3D imagery of products. For example, Warby Parker lets customers use augmented reality to try on frames. Ulta and major beauty brands utilize an augmented reality try-on experience to let customers preview lipstick hues, mascara, hair colors and more.
The heart of augmented reality, though, is imagery. This interactive and immersive experience begins with images. Many augmented reality experiences utilize the camera on a phone or tablet to capture the user’s face or surroundings; then the augmented reality technology superimposes graphic elements over an individual’s face or their environment.
Dealerships and car manufacturers offer augmented reality experiences, too. Customers can preview vehicle models in their backyard, their garage or even in their driveway. Some augmented reality car showrooms even let customers use their camera to walk around the vehicle or look inside at the interior.
When consumers use these augmented reality tools, they engage with the products. They can explore their options and gather visual data that helps them better understand if a product works for their needs.
Augmented reality experiences let buyers better understand the design of a vehicle. They might be able to zoom in on a certain feature. Interactive photography also can allow customers to look around the interior of a vehicle, too, and explore the backseat, look up at the sunroof or even get an up close look at the infotainment screen.
These experiences can begin with digital car stock photos provided by EVOX Images. Dealerships can access a slideshow of images for thousands of makes and models through EVOX Images. In addition, dealerships also have access to 360 spin photos and interior panorama photos.
Photography Helps Remove the Mystery of the Product
Photography and car stock images show the shopper what a vehicle looks like—inside and out. Yet, the standard photo isn’t multidimensional.
The immersive and interactive 360 spin photos provide the data that buyers need. While scrolling through a car photo slideshow can help buyers view different features of the vehicle from different angles or just close-up, the immersive photos let buyers explore the vehicle similarly to how they would at the dealership.
If car dealerships want to provide a virtual type of walkaround experience, they need to include 360 spin car stock photos online. These images can help buyers who want to limit their time in the physical dealership.
Interactive photos help customers gather data, but they also can help the dealerships. How many times has a sales team member worked with a customer who really didn’t know what they wanted? Maybe they spent hours at the dealership only to leave completely undecided.
Car stock photos provide customers with visual insight about different models. Ideally, dealerships should provide a variety of car stock photos for their customers. While 360 spin exterior photos and panorama photos are engaging and help enhance the user experience, standard stock photos can give customers a snapshot of all the elements and features of a specific model.
When used together, the different types of car stock photos can provide a complete visual narrative on each make and model. EVOX Images even offers a base trim library that dealerships can access to provide customers with images that only depict the base price model.
EVOX Images also offers 3-angle color sets to help customers visualize what a specific model looks like in different paint hues. These different stock photos can provide visual answers to a shopper’s car questions.
Car Stock Photos Add to the Carousel Ad Experience
Dealerships hoping to engage customers and catch their attention also can integrate high-quality car stock photos within carousel ads online. These ads feature a clickable design that allows consumers to scroll through different products and click what interests them.
Dealerships can use carousel ads to present numerous vehicle options to potential customers. Car stock photos provide visual interest and a high-quality appeal that can serve to engage customers who receive and see these ads.
Every photo in carousel ads, though, should include its own separate link. If a dealership is advertising different models via a carousel ad, the link should take the consumer to that model’s particular page or the link could direct to a form where the customer could request more information.
Car Stock Photos and Social Media Content
Car dealerships also can use car stock photos to enhance their social media pages and their posts and social content. Car stock photos from EVOX Images are high-resolution images that are used for a variety of marketing purposes.
Car stock photos can be integrated into social media content to tease upcoming models or to show off a particular feature of a model. Show social media followers all their color options for a vehicle by including a three-angle color set of a model.
The only limitation for car stock photos might be related to older models and used models on the dealership’s lot. Used vehicles are best captured by their true images; many used or pre-owned models might have small flaws or other distinguishing features that need to be shown to potential buyers.
Is the Car Shopping Experience Fully Virtual Now?
Many buyers research and shop for a vehicle online, but this doesn’t mean they ditch the dealership visit. Buyers might be anxious to go back to the normal shopping habits, and dealership visits have always been a part of the car shopping process.
However, car dealerships should understand that online resources also are an important component to shopping for a new car for today’s modern buyers. In addition, the younger generations have never lived a day without the internet or social media. These buyers are comfortable with tech and could crave more immersive and interactive shopping experiences.
Dealerships should use car stock photography to engage potential customers and heighten the user’s experience online. Immersive and interactive experiences can set a dealership apart from the competition and make them memorable in the mind of the customer.