Autorola, an online remarketing company, predicts that online business to business (B2B) car sales will increase by 100% within the next five years.
At present about 15% of B2B used cars sales are conducted online. This, the company says, will increase to nearly 30% by 2016.
According to Autorola this will not mean the eventual disappearance of offline auctions. Instead it will mean that nearly all auctioneers will have an online presence and that the percentage of sales conducted online will increase significantly over time.
The company's Chief Executive Officer, Peter Groftehauge, said "You can see some realigning of physical auction networks, but that is about reduced volumes of used vehicles coming back into the market."
He added that auctioneers need volume to make their businesses viable, which explains a number of large sites recently being "mothballed." He predicted, however, that the remaining sites in combination with an increase in the number of online providers will fuel online growth.
According to Groftehauge the tough economic times have caused many dealer groups, independent traders and car supermarkets to run their businesses with a smaller staff contingent. For these people, online auctions provide an easy way to bid on vehicles across a number of channels in a single day without having to leave their offices.
Autorola estimates that more than 220,000 cars will be sold through the company's online platforms in 2011.
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