What are some of the best UK car dealer websites of 2014? As a consumer, who presents their dealership online in a way that would appeal to me? Who’s virtual forecourt is kept the cleanest and easiest to navigate around? Read on as I scour the web to find 16 of the best UK car dealer websites 2014!
With the huge number of car dealers in the UK including approximately 4,900 franchised dealerships, in addition to new start-ups and independent garages, just who has the best virtual forecourts on the web that might appeal to me as a consumer? As more and more customers take to the internet to discover their next car, how a dealer “presents” their stock online is almost as important as the vehicles themselves.
I have selected a range of excellent website designs that boast their own unique strengths, and which also “caught my eye” as a consumer.
It was a tough choice! Especially as the standard of websites across the web is so high. Perhaps in the future I might feature another shortlist of dealers? I have selected 16 websites in no specific order, taking into account:
- How easy is the stock to browse?
- How easy the website is to navigate?
- Is the website “eye pleasing” and enticing?
- Is the website up to date?
Please read and maybe think how your own website compares? Does it feature any of the strengths mentioned? Would you like me to take a look at your website to offer you some feedback!? Please get in touch or comment below!
1. Marshall Motor Group – UK Wide
The Marshall Motor Group is a great place to start our 16 of the best uk car dealer websites 2014. The website is a pleasure to navigate with a clean design, and easy to use menu options. Finding your way around is very straightforward! The visitor is presented with simple search facilities and cleanly displayed search results. Cars are represented with images, a wealth of technical and historical information, and “possible alternatives” that might be of interest to the customer.
Car dealer link: marshallweb.co.uk
2. Busseys – Norwich
Busseys, founded back in 1911 are an established independent dealer group based in Norwich and the greater Norfolk area. Their website is bright, colourful, and very eye pleasing. The homepage acts like a gateway, with bright links and calls-to-action to the various Busseys services. New and used car facilities have their own dedicated web pages, to enable to the customer to search without distraction. I particularly like this website design as the green fields and blue skies remind me of the Windows XP startup screen!
Car dealer link: busseys.co.uk
3. Benfield Motor Group – NorthEast, NorthWest & Yorkshire
Situated up in the North of the UK, Benfield Motor Group brings decades of success in the motor trade to it’s web presence with an excellent car dealer website. Visitors are presented with very easy to use search facilities, and current stock can be viewed within 1 click! This is an excellent feature as it means customers can begin viewing stock without having to navigate to different sections of the website. Helpful phone numbers, and even “live chat” are readily available to help the visitor pursue their purchase.
Car dealer link: drivebenfield.com
4. Riverside Motors – Yorkshire
The Riverside Motor Group based up in Yorkshire boasts a very attractive looking website. With clear menu options and navigation, glossy tempting offers, and easy to find stock lists with detailed vehicle information.
Car dealer link: riversidemotors.co.uk
5. Bob Gerard Ltd – Leicester
This website caught my eye above many others. Bob Gerard Ltd is a new and used car dealer in Leicester selling a range of vehicles, with an impressive history spanning over 70 years in the motor trade. The Bob Gerard Ltd website boasts clean graphics, a friendly colour scheme, and easy-to-find functionality. There is also a very nice use of vintage racing cars subtly splashed across the background, to add a further sense of prestige.
Car dealer link: bobgerard.co.uk
6. Mike Brewer Motors – Sheffield
Upon searching through used car dealers in Sheffield, Mike Brewer Motors stood out above the rest. A clean looking website with lots of uncluttered space, Mike Brewer Motors is a pleasure to search and offers the potential customers a very easy browsing experience. With nice glossy images of the showroom and stock, sat alongside customer testimonials and nicely separated content, this website was one of my favourites. Big buttons and calls to action, and simple vehicle lists with just the right amount of information. Great job!
Car dealer link: mikebrewermotors.com
7. Motor City – Plymouth
Motor City based in Plymouth is highly successful and established name in the motor trade in the South. Their website is geared towards functionality, presenting visitors with easy to use navigation, and comprehensive information and support throughout. When searching through stock, you really get a sense that Motor City knows how to deliver the right vehicles to their customers, offering a range of information, after sales options, and detailed images of each vehicle. This is an example of how to present vehicles “on the web” as well as “on the forecourt”.
Car dealer link: motorcityplymouth.co.uk
8. Jennings Motor Group – North East
Jennings Motor Group is a multi-award winning franchise group based up in the North East, with over a century over success behind them. Their website reflects this success, with a very polished and seamless design that offers visitors an impressive environment to browse stock, and immediately recognise the prestige of this established brand. Vehicle stock is so easy to search and refine, with information about each item displayed cleanly. Overall, one of the best websites I have found!
Car dealer link: jenningsmotorgroup.co.uk
9. Sutton Park Group – West Midlands
Sutton Park Group, established in 1991, are franchised dealers situated across the West Midlands. Their website was a pleasure to find with a clean and fresh looking design, and the integration of the pink and blue logo colours are used as subtle navigation aids and calls to action. With stock listings only one “click” away, visitors can instantly view what is on offer.
Car dealer link: suttonparkgroup.co.uk
10. Smiths Motor Group – Peterborough
Smiths Motor Group is a multi-franchise family business, built upon over 70 years of success in the motor trade. Their website brings a more “minimal” look, with lots of eye-pleasing “white space”, and very easy to find navigation and functionality. Visitors are presented with a constant search facility, meaning a refined browse of stock is only a few clicks away.
Car dealer link: smithsmotorgroup.co.uk
11. John Bank Group – East Anglia
Reviewing so many used car dealer websites around the web, you quickly learn how to distinguish the best examples. John Banks Group website is one of those examples. Pleasing gentle colours with plenty of “white space” on the pages, and a consistent simple navigation bar across the top. This is great example of an “easy to view” website.
Car dealer link: johnbanks.co.uk
12. Murketts Vauxhall – Cambridge
With sites all over East Anglia, Murketts Vauxhall is a family owned group with more than 100 years of experience in delivering quality new and used vehicles. The Murketts website is polished and easy to navigate, allowing visitors to refine their searches. I particularly liked when viewing available vehicle models, you see a little picture of each model. This is great little touch to help customers who may not be familiar with the different vehicle models, pick the right one.
Car dealer link: murketts.co.uk
13. Phoenix Car Company – Glasgow
From humble beginnings beside Glasgow airport, Phoenix Car Company has grown into one of central Scotlands largest dealer groups with multiple sites and franchises in Paisley, Glasgow, Grangemouth and Stirling. Their website is rich in media and beautiful layouts, and very easy to explore with stock listings only one click away. Also featured is a very easy-to-use finance calculator, which also acts as a search function where visitors can select the payment options they desire, and are presented with vehicle options that suit their budget! Now agreed, other websites may offer such a facility, but it was the ease of finding and using this facility which appealed to me. A nice touch!
Car dealer link: phoenixcar.co.uk
14. Bridgend Motor Group – Ayrshire
I liked this website! Bridgend Motor Group present themselves on the web with a unique “quirky” stylised website. What do I mean by that exactly? Well. The layout and calls-to-action are simple and bold, with eye-pleasing soft colours, and some very cool historic photos of the business in the early days. Old “grainy” black and white photos are fantastic to look at and admire, and really give visitors a sense of how experienced Bridgend Motor Group are. Scroll down a little, and the visitor is presented with lots of visual queues to explore stock, and find the vehicle they want. Manufacturers logos, different types of vehicle shapes and sizes are all presented for the user to “click on” and find out more. It’s a great feature especially in this age of big screen tablets and smartphones where users scan the website looking for the next button to “press”.
Car dealer link: bridgendgroup.co.uk
15. Nathaniel Cars – South Wales
Nathaniel Cars based in South Wales boasts an excellent virtual forecourt. With slick modern dynamic layouts, this site is a joy to scroll through and explore. The key word here is “dynamic”. Did you know that soon, almost 50% of all web traffic will be mobile based? Meaning smartphones, tablets, and netbooks? How a website looks on a smartphone, can be very different to how it looks on a desktop computer screen, and Nathaniel Cars have addressed that situation with a beautiful “scrolling” website that adjusts for mobile visitors, and looks great on mobile devices.
Car dealer link: nathanielcars.co.uk
16. Lings Cars – Gateshead
And finally. Now granted that Lings is not a used car dealer and instead specialises in car leasing, in the motor trade there can not be a more extravagant and amazing website as Lings Cars. Following success in the TV show Dragons Den, Ling Valentine now runs a hugely popular vehicle leasing business with a reputation for colourful, and very funny loud marketing. With so much to “look at” on the website including animated chickens and dancing karaoke singers, you can’t help but stare and discover everything that is on offer!
Lings Cars website: lingscars.com
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Header Image Credit: Harry_NL via Flickr