Google India, along with
Kantar TNS, released a comprehensive report on the influence of digital on the
decision-making journey of an automobile shopper. The report titled “The Drive
to Decide” states that in 2017, 89% of Indian car purchases are digitally
influenced, up from 75% in 2016. These auto shoppers exhibited three key
digital behaviours: 96% of them are searching online, 80% are watching online
videos and 88% of them prefer to research on their smartphones.
These findings were based on
research conducted by Kantar TNS. The research covers 500+ respondents in each
of the 27 markets (overall 13828 respondents in 27 markets) via online or
face-to-face with an average survey length of 15 minutes.
Elaborating on the influence
of digital on the path to purchase, the report shows in the last two years,
there has been a 2.5x increase in consumers who are taking only two months to
buy a four-wheeler. Concurrently, the number of dealer visits has also dropped
by 50% in the last three years. Finally, two-thirds of digitally influenced
buyers are searching and discovering dealers online. Together, all of these are
leading to shorter, more efficient buying cycles.
As per the report, online
video is fast becoming a preferred information source that is allowing buyers
to explore a new car from different perspectives. The percentage of online
video usage in the process of buying a car in 2017 has nearly doubled, to 80%
from 43% in 2016. Breaking up the types of videos consumers are watching; the
report shows that 41% are vehicle safety tests; 41% showcase the technology and
features of the car; 38% are on performance and 33% of them are customer
reviews. Further, the report highlights that 79% of consumers who are watching
online video are taking an action - underscoring the important role of online
video in the decision-making process.
Talking about how digital is
transforming this industry, Vikas Agnihotri, Industry Director, Google India
said, “Online video has emerged as the biggest disrupter for the four-wheeler
industry in India. YouTube has over 225 million Indian smartphone users
watching online video every month, auto content itself has witnessed an
astounding 225% year-on-year watchtime growth. From an advertiser perspective,
what makes this trend even more relevant is that car manufacturers can now
measure the exact impact that online is having on offline sales, and we believe
that is a real game changer.”
Gabri Herrmann, Kantar TNS
said, “The modern auto shopper walks into the dealership armed with a staggering
array of information. Delivering on
research needs and inspiring the consumer is critical -- brands that succeed in
this will win the sale!”.
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