Smartphones and their impact on the automotive market
Handheld device searches are becoming the first stop for consumers making important purchase decisions before visiting dealerships.
Dealers adapting to the way consumers are shopping today will benefit in the short and long-term by understanding how their clients shop for vehicles. Clients today are engaging with companies that have a strong web presence. They will also recommend those companies to others and return for their next vehicle purchase based on their experience. It is not just about your staff, it’s also about the platforms.
A study conducted by auto trader shows that 88% of prospective clients use the internet to conduct research on a car they intend to buy. The tendency is to start by looking for information on which car best meets their needs. Customers then look for the deals that fit their budgets and or other variables involved in decision making. Prospective clients will also make time to read what others have said about their vehicle of choice and the experiences of other drivers with those vehicles.
Smart devices are dominating the interaction market
Traditional methods of advertising have been replaced by access to mobile devices. A recent study conducted by Google shows mobile devices dominate digital interactions and have become a key component of all purchasing, including and especially high-ticket items like cars.
Google also discovered that 71% of digital interactions were produced on smartphones demonstrating a dramatic shift between desktop and handheld tools. Equally important, 58% of car buyers in Google’s study indicated that mobile devices would be their tool of choice for vehicle purchases.
Many of the instruments used in initial mobile searches are searches based on proximity to dealerships, video content, and social networks, which is why digital marketing professionals are increasingly becoming assets to the most productive dealerships.
The desk is still important
Websites on mobile devices seem to be the preferred platform for car buyers, but even mobile-first clients will expand those initial searches to desktops. While mobile is the most practical method, it is a filter or sorts to get to the content on which a desktop can expand. This makes desktops dominant in obtaining more detailed information. Desktops also appear to be better resources to help customers regarding vehicle customization.