Shift, an e-commerce marketplace for buying and selling cars, announced it is offering its proprietary software solutions to a limited number of dealership groups that may have seen a drop in sales as a result of COVID-19. The company is looking to work with dealership groups that have multiple stores either shut down or operations significantly impacted by the nation-wide social distancing orders.

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The COVID-19 pandemic is fundamentally altering consumer shopping behavior across many industries and pushing customers online. According to Cox Automotive, used car sales have fallen nearly 65% over the last few weeks nationwide, and even more so in states with strict lockdown orders like California. Lack of fully digital transaction capabilities remains a barrier for many dealerships seeking to continue serving their customers, and to potential car buyers who want to purchase a vehicle but are afraid to do so because they can’t do so in a contactless manner. While some dealerships are able to list their inventory online, few, if any, have the capability to facilitate a fully digital transaction, and even fewer have a way to offer test drives to customers in an environment when stores are either closed or customers are unwilling to go to them.

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Shift has spent the past several years developing proprietary systems that enable no-contact, fully online sales of used cars, both with and without a test drive. Like most traditional auto dealers and manufacturers, Shift believes that test drives remain crucial to the customer’s purchase, and has created a unique, patent-pending way to deliver these test drives to their location. In addition, Shift enables online transactions as well as offline transactions using a custom-built mobile point of sale application on an iPad. All transactions come complete with e-contracting technology, digital DMV title transfer, and the full spectrum of F&I products.