Online research trend among car buyers

ONLINE PANELSWhen deciding to buy a car, almost every one of us faces a cliff-hanger question – which car to buy? It’s equally daunting for first time as well as old-time buyers. Researches have found out that most common factors that influence a car-buyer’s decision are:

1. Reliability

2. Reputation

3. Performance

4. Price competitiveness

5. Safety rating

6. Cost of ownership

7. Size of household

8. Planned use

Buying a car often involves long-winded discussion sessions engaging family members, friends and acquaintances as feedback group before visiting the dealership.

However, time has changed as now we have internet. Truly speaking internet and search engines have made research less daunting, more consumer-friendly and transparent. You don’t just need to rely on personal gut-feelings and dealership promotional messages.

How people research on web before buying a car?

Here we have a few research findings:

1. During the last decade, over 89% of web-users, willing to buy a car, searched online before visiting any dealership (according to study).

2. Around 47% of first time car buyers visited a third-party independent site and 46% visited car manufacture’s site before making a car purchase decision (2007 J.D. Power and Associates report)

3. In the same year, 23% of used car buyers visited vehicle locator websites in their processes of buying used car.

Online search pattern involves few distinct trends and preferences:

1. Third-party independent sites are reliable for price comparison, review and consumer feedback reports.

2. Manufacturer’s site and manufacturer-backed site are visited mostly for features and specification purposes.

3. For inventory purpose, people mostly visit dealership sites.

How dealerships and car-makers can make most out of this trend?

No doubt, car-makers and dealerships are already putting in hours to catch potential buyers online. Motto is simple – catch them before they divert off to competitors, keep them and convert them. Only way to successfully accomplish the task is to increase web-presence – directly and indirectly.

1. Increase online interaction with potential buyers and existing customers.

2. Respond to grievances posted on independent consumer feedback pages with genuine intentions.

3. Listen to feedbacks and give honest efforts to implement them in your business.

4. Distribute every piece of information concerning car buyers on web platforms like social media.

Car buyers – Use web judiciously

Search online platforms as much as you possible before zeroing in on one particular car and dealership. Do you know how to search the web effectively before buying any automobile?

1. Narrow down your preference set with broader conditions like, planned uses of the car and your family size.

2. Now start posting queries related to your choice on online forums; search existing discussions and read what people are talking about the vehicle. Try different forums to make the right decision.

3. Next stop will be car review pages. Give more attention to user-generated review; they’ll be more factual.

4. Visit dealerships, car-makers and independent sites to survey best prices offered for your preferred vehicles.

Once you are armed with all requisite information visit the dealership near your house.


  1. […] According to an survey, in last decade over 89 percent of web-users looking to purchase a car did their preliminary research online. It was only a matter of time before this was taken one step further. By making it more convenient for the consumer (bringing the cars onto their turf, at a time that works for them) Tred seeks to create a stress-free car buying experience. The days of dragging impatient children to a dealership or trying arrange multiple days to check out cars then go back and actually make the purchase will soon be extinct if this start-up takes off. […]