Conversion rates for van sales in March at Manheim increased by 3% from February, despite a 6% increase in volume, and were also up significantly year-on-year.
In March 2016, conversion rates were around 60%, but were recorded in excess of 70% last month.
Matthew Davock, head of LCV at Manheim, said: “In the first quarter of 2017, we offered a record number of vans at our auctions, with 20% more volume compared to the same period last year.
“Despite having more vans to sell, we have seen robust sales performance since the start of the year, selling 10% more vans in March than we did in February and 21% more than we did in March 2016, alongside conversion rates hitting record levels last month.”
The average selling price of all vans sold at Manheim in March was £5,298, which was slightly down from February, but in terms of stock profile, age and mileage both increase month-on-month by 3 months and 2,000 miles, respectively.
The average age of vans sold at Manheim’s auctions was 63 months and the average mileage was 75,000. Year-on-year, the average selling price in March was up by 11%, with age and mileage being recorded 4 months and 7,000 miles lower compared to March 2016.
Davock continued: “During March, our buyer footfall and clickfall remained strong, with footfall slightly improving over both January and February.
“Online attendee audiences continue to increase and perform ahead of expectations. In March, we saw 34% of all vans sell to online buyers – a new record for Manheim and a year-on-year increase of 3%.”
Manheim sold 45% more vans in an online-only environment, including through a series of special sales featuring pre-selected stock.
Compared to the first quarter of 2016, Manheim’s buyer base grew by 6%, with a 23% increase in the number of buyers purchasing over 51 units and a 3% increase in franchise dealers buying stock from Manheim.
Davock added: “Volumes decreased in March from February, and in my opinion this softening – for the first time in five months – is a good thing for the market.
“We expect buyer demand to continue to be positive during April, with conversion rates continuing to increase. In April, we are encouraging vendors to focus on the same core factors of reserve pricing, duplication, late plate and heavily-damaged stock. If these are priced accordingly, high conversion rates will no doubt follow.”
Manheim is attending The CV Show at the NEC in Birmingham from April 25-27, with its stand featuring the very special addition of an exquisitely-restored 1988 Ford Transit ‘spy van’ originally used for covert surveillance by HMRC.