New Study: Three in Four Used Car Shoppers are Lead Loyal; Lead Switching Patterns Offer Cross-Selling Insights

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“Lead Loyalty and Intent to Buy Online” white paper from CarStory tracks used car shoppers’ brand loyalty path from online search to lead submission. Highlights include: Ford shoppers have greatest lead brand stickiness; Honda/Toyota shoppers have greatest reciprocal lead brand switching; and luxury brand searchers least likely to submit online lead.

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This brand loyalty and disloyalty data gives salespeople the ability to quickly pivot if the customer’s needs are not being met by the core brand inventory, said Chad Bockius, CMO of CarStory

CarStory, the industry’s largest provider of search and inventory data and analytics on used vehicles, today released "Lead Loyalty and Intent to Buy Online," a new white paper that tracks used car shoppers’ brand loyalty paths, from search to lead submission.

The paper, which details brand-by-brand lead loyalty/lead disloyalty analysis for 15 popular vehicle makes, reveals that while the majority of used vehicle shoppers (three in four) are lead loyal – meaning they submitted a lead for the brand that was the basis of their initial online search – they also display key brand lead switching patterns that can offer dealerships important insights into cross-selling opportunities. The search and lead submission data, which was derived from over 350 online used vehicle marketplaces, can also help dealerships understand how to more precisely adjust off-brand used vehicle inventory to fit the profiles of their brand shoppers.

For example, the paper reveals that Ford online used car shoppers are the most ‘lead loyal,’ and Honda and Toyota shoppers are more likely to switch to Toyota and Honda, respectively, than to any other brand. Not surprisingly, online used vehicle shoppers searching for domestic brands have a higher tendency to switch to another domestic brand when submitting a lead, than to an import brand.

The study also looked at lead form submission rates by brand, finding that Honda’s lead submission rate is 67% higher than Lexus, and that, overall, luxury brands had the lowest lead form submission rates. And, when it comes to price shopping, the study revealed that used car shoppers tend to stay within budget, with the majority sticking to the same price parameters from online search to lead submission.

“This brand loyalty and disloyalty data gives salespeople the ability to quickly pivot if the customer’s needs are not being met by the core brand inventory. The knowledge of what the 'next best brands' are for the consumer is invaluable—especially if the shift in sales strategy is fluid and perceived as intuitive or personalized by the consumer,” said Chad Bockius, Chief Marketing Officer of CarStory.

Key highlights of the CarStory "Lead Loyalty and Intent to Buy Online" white paper include:

  • Most used car shoppers are lead loyal (73-84%) — used car shoppers who search for a make ultimately submit a lead for that same make.
  • Ford has the highest level of lead loyalty (84.4%)
  • Three pairs of used car brands have reciprocal exchanges of lead submission (Toyota/Honda, Chevy/Ford, BMW/Mercedes)
  • GMC used vehicle shoppers who submit leads, end up submitting leads on Chevrolets 9.3% of the time—nearly double any single brand cross-over!
  • Shoppers are significantly less likely to submit leads for luxury brands such as BMW, Mercedes, Infinity and Lexus, as opposed to non-luxury brands.

CarStory is powered by four million unique used vehicle listings and 100 million monthly consumer searches. Data in the CarStory "Lead Loyalty and Intent to Buy Online" white paper is based on an analysis of this online activity and data derived from over 350 online used vehicle marketplaces, as well as lead submission data from CarStory Market Reports. The CarStory "Lead Loyalty and Intent to Buy Online" white paper is available for download at http://www.carstory.com/research/

About CarStory
CarStory is the industry’s largest provider of search and inventory data and analytics on used vehicle pricing and preferences. CarStory Market Reports are powered by Vast and synthesize over four million real-time used vehicle listings with data from over eight million searches a week to produce unique insights that help move consumers from online shoppers to on-the-lot buyers. By uncovering facts, features and competitive differentiators that make each vehicle unique in any given market, CarStory offers dealers and consumers the confidence they need to condense the sales process and walk away happy. A merchandising tool and lead source for websites, CarStory Market Reports are free to auto dealers. Learn more at http://www.carstory.com.

About Vast
Vast is the premier provider of big data solutions for life’s biggest purchases. Vast’s industry-leading big data platform and applications are currently in use at many of the largest automotive, real estate and travel businesses in the world. Vast serves Global 1,000 companies, including AOL and Southwest Airlines. Learn more at Vast.com.

Media Relations: 
Melanie Webber, mWEBB Communications, (949) 307-1723, melanie(at)mwebbcom(dot)com 
Cassandra Cavanah, mWEBB Communications, (818) 397-4630, cassandra(at)mwebbcom(dot)com

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mWEBB Communications
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