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Mitsubishi Launches Digital Retail Program as Auto Manufacturers Tap Omnichannel Tech

Mitsubishi Motors

As the process of making large-ticket purchases becomes increasingly digital across industries, Mitsubishi Motors has announced a new digital retail program.

Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA) on Monday (Feb. 5) announced the launch of its new online solution, ClickShop 2.0, to link the process of shopping on its own digital platforms and on dealer’s websites to its showrooms, with the auto company claiming that this platform reduces the time it takes to buy a vehicle by 70%.

The launch comes in partnership with automotive sales and finance technology company AutoFi as well as vehicle-focused consumer finance company Santander Consumer USA.

“A new car is the most expensive item most people will ever buy, so why not remove some of the stress by making it an easier, faster, and more positive process?” Mark Chaffin, MMNA president and CEO, said in a statement. “New brands are joining the market, offering new ways for customers to shop and buy vehicles, and we are seeing the success of these approaches.”

The program enables consumers to browse available vehicles that align with their financing eligibility using a soft credit pull. When these customers visit the dealership, already qualified, the AutoFi showroom solution allows dealers to resume the consumer’s process from the there, shortening the time to finalize the sale.

Increasingly, digital technologies are finding their way into the process of purchasing larger-ticket items. Findings highlighted in the August 2023 edition of the PYMNTS Retail Tracker® Series Report revealed that 67% of luxury shoppers say that stores should feature higher levels of digital integration. In fact, some consumers are going so far as to buy their homes online.

Additionally, CarGurus recently shared that more than 70% of car shoppers want to handle more of the car buying process from home.

In an effort to meet this demand for digital integration, car companies are investing more and more in omnichannel innovation.

For instance, Volvo Cars Chief Commercial Officer and Deputy CEO Bjorn Annwall said on a call with analysts Thursday (Feb. 1) discussing the auto company’s fourth-quarter 2023 financial results that, around the world, the company is investing in improving its omnichannel options, though the digital journey has a way to go.

“The key point there is that we marry the digital system and the physical system in a seamless way,” Annwall said. “We still have some systems that need to be automatized to really get the full efficiency benefits out of it.”

Plus, digital used car firm Carvana has reportedly improved operations and reduced its debt in the last 18 months, resulting in a surge in its stock price from $5 to $55.

According to findings cited in PYMNTS Intelligence’s 2022 study, “The Key To Satisfied Car Buyers Is Digital Disbursements,” created in collaboration with Onbe, part of the Expanding Payments Choice Playbook Series, 72% of automotive customer interactions are already digital. Plus, additional research highlighted in the report reveals that 78% of online car buyers were highly satisfied with the experience, and only 3% would not purchase a car online again.

Overall, consumers are shopping online more and more. PYMNTS Intelligence’s study “Consumer Interest in an Everyday App,” which drew on insights from a survey of more than 3,300 consumers in the United States and Australia, revealed that, of the 61% of consumers who had shopped for a non-grocery retail product in the previous month, 72% did so via connected device at least some of the time.