Auto Trader has reported a serious drop in profits during the pandemic, with turnover down from£368.9m in 2020 to £262.8m and pre-tax profits falling from £251.5m to £157.4m. This is said to be due to Auto Trader giving free advertising to its customers last year and again in February this year, as well as offering discounted rates during other times.
The discounts and freebies were seen as being extremely supportive of the motor trade and, while it has dinted the profits, Auto Trader remains extremely positive about its future, not least thanks to the growth of digital trading.
Nathan Coe, chief executive officer of Auto Trader Group, said: “We decided early on to proactively support our people, car buyers and our customers, many of whom run small family-owned businesses. These actions have positioned us for a strong start to this next financial year.
“There has been a dramatic shift towards buying online which means we now have more buyers than ever turning to Auto Trader to help with their next car purchase, making us even more relevant to retailers and manufacturers.
“This positions us ideally to enable the buying and selling of cars online, which will materially improve the car buying experience and the business of our customers.”