Well-known online retailers such as CarMax and Carvana now have a new rival. Gettacar is looking to take advantage of the recent surge in used car buying. And the site boasts some features that may allow it to do just that.
CarMax and Carvana: The old guard
Any new online car retailer faces stiff competition from CarMax, the market leader in online used car sales. An outgrowth of Circuit City, CarMax focuses on marketing used cars available at one of its many gigantic retail stores. Each store warehouses 300 to 400 vehicles, like a used vehicle superstore. And the company invests heavily in advertising across marketing channels to drive traffic to its stores and website. You can even buy a car online for contactless curbside pickup nationwide or home delivery in most areas across the country — all without having to step inside a showroom.
Carvana is another popular retailer known for selling used cars online and through its signature car vending machines. When you purchase a vehicle on Carvana’s website, you can have it delivered to you. Or if you live in a market with a vending machine, you can visit one. Each contains 24 vehicles parked in a multi-level glass structure. When you enter your name and a coin in the compartment containing the car you bought, the vending machine dispenses your vehicle. This nifty concept has driven Carvana’s buzz and market share, making it the fastest-growing used car retailer through mid-2020, Barron’s reports.
That’s not to mention large retailers like AutoNation, and Group 1 Automotive. They sell used and new vehicles and have extensive national and regional footprints. But the competition hasn’t deterred Gettacar and founder/CEO Yossi Levi from jumping into the mix. He believes he’s found a more profitable angle to used car sales, and he might be right.
Gettacar: The new kid on the block
The Gettacar purchasing experience is different from the competition in a couple of ways. The first is the speed of the purchase. Gettacar advertises that car buying can be done entirely online in as little as 12 minutes thanks to its round-the-clock financing options. One-year warranties, at-home test drives, and seven-day return windows are also part of the Gettacar experience. It’s ideal for customers who need to, well, get a car quickly.
But the speed isn’t just for speed’s sake. Levi and co-founder Jake Levin realized that much of what historically goes into a car purchase at a dealership, and even online, is time-consuming, unnecessary, and unenjoyable. Gettacar’s purchase speed is designed to make the buying experience more pleasant and less painful.
In a recent Forbes interview, Levi noted that Gettacar concentrates on building a strong local presence where it establishes retail locations. Gettacar is as concerned with the post-sale experience as it is with the purchase experience. They’ve started slowly with stores in just seven markets as of 2020, with plans to expand this year. That way, they can focus on servicing customers long after they sign on the dotted line.
Gettacar’s positive first impression
Gettacar has been around for only a couple of years, but buyers are taking notice. The company announced a whopping 186 percent increase in sales growth between 2019 and 2020. And the co-founders project a 210 percent increase in 2021. Some of this impressive growth is undoubtedly due to consumer demand for a contactless car buying experience. However, the industry was already trending in this direction, allowing Gettacar the perfect opening to launch.
Investors are also taking note. Levi and Levin have raised $25 million from outside investors in 2021. That builds on an already admirable $23 million raised over the past two years. According to the Forbes article, investors like Torch Capital have noted how Gettacar is hyperfocused on the customer experience. Knowing that repeat customers are essential to a successful used-car business, Levi and Levin have seemingly picked a profitable path.
Gettacar’s wholly online experience may allow it to steal market share from CarMax and Carvana, both of which still require some consumer contact in many local markets. Gettacar has a good shot with a nice-sized war chest and a market full of consumers hungry to buy a car in a contactless manner. In a year or two, it could replace Carvana as the fastest-growing auto dealer. In another couple of years, it might give CarMax a run for its money if Gettacar can replicate its initial nationwide.