Driving blockchain adoption

Driving blockchain adoption

Driving blockchain adoption
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Updated – How Car Dealers Can’t Use Proximity Beacons

Updated – How Car Dealers Can’t Use Proximity Beacons

Remember the Tom Cruise film Minority Report about the pursuit of thought crime criminals? Being an advertising guy, the thing that intrigued me most in that film was the proximity advertising that displayed personalised ads as Tom walked past the digital billboards

There comes a time when SciFi fantasy technology stops hinting at becoming reality and starts to actually become reality, and I think that’s where we are now with proximity tracking and proximity marketing. Sure, proximity beacons have been around for a while – Google has been pushing their use for quite some time. Android KitKat 4.4 launched with Beacon receiving capabilities in 2013 and in the UK, the Swan Centre shopping mall in Eastleigh installed beacons and published a loyalty app as far back as 2014.

What is a beacon and how does it work?

Beacons are (often) tiny Bluetooth devices that can be discreetly placed indoors or outdoors. They scan for Bluetooth enabled mobile devices in their proximity range, as they broadcast an ID number. The beacon can then either log that device or send a message to that device.

What kinds of beacons should you get?

There are a wide range of beacons available to buy depending on your needs. There are long battery life beacons, beacons that are more suitable for wider ranges, waterproof beacons, wearable beacons and a whole lot more.  

Make sure you get beacons that are both iBeacon (Apple) and Eddystone (Android) compatible.

How much do Beacons cost?

If you’re buying just one or two beacons from a reputable store then you’re probably looking at a starting price around the £10 mark. For long range, outdoor beacons we’re talking nearer £40 to £50 a pop.

Beacons for tracking car dealer visits

So here’s where it gets interesting for car dealers! If you’re running Google Ads campaigns to sell used cars for example, you can track how many people click an ad, visit your site and then complete an enquiry form. With clever call tracking technology from companies such as MediaHawk, you can also track how many people call you after seeing an ad. What you can’t currently do, is track how many people turned up at your dealership after clicking your ads or know which campaigns drive footfall and which don’t.

Here’s where beacons come in – plant these little devices in and around your lot and you’ll be able to get a view on how many people see your ads, click them and then visit, plant one in the showroom itself and you’ll be able to track further intent.

How car dealers can use Beacons

We’ve looked at how proximity beacons can help you track ad campaigns and we know that has a huge value, but those same beacons can also be used to push out notifications to your customers smartphones as they enter the proximity area of each device. Anything from a simple “Welcome to Blanco Cars” to “Welcome to Blanco Cars, why not download our app to get the most from your visit today”.

Short range beacons can be used to provide the user with a whole host of vehicle information as they approach each particular vehicle.

Here’s a thought… if you’ve got a competitor in your area, you could always plant a beacon near their dealership entrance and blast a “come to us instead message”. But that would be unethical right?

:: UPDATE ::

This article was originally posted on October 13th and was intended as the first of a series on Beacon technology and proximity marketing for Car Dealers. Come October 25th, Google makes a shock announcement that Android will no longer support “Nearby Notifications” from December 6th onwards! The Android blog statement noted… “However, earlier this year, we noticed a significant increase in locally irrelevant and spammy notifications that were leading to a poor user experience.” and “As a result, we have decided to discontinue support for Nearby Notifications.”

In the US, a significant business community has been built around this functionality and the short, somewhat “matter of fact” statement must have come as quite a shock to those heavily invested in this technology.

The announcement does not necessarily herald the death of proximity marketing.  Beacons can still talk to permission-based apps that users install but this is a significant barrier.  Companies will need to either invest heavily in custom apps or adopt a commercial platform to reach users but more significantly, users themselves will have to download that app to take advantage of the technology.




Updated – How Car Dealers Can’t Use Proximity Beacons
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Things About In-Market For Search That Car Dealers Need to Know

Things About In-Market For Search That Car Dealers Need to Know

What are in-market audiences?

You may have noticed that we’re pretty excited about “in-market” for search from Google ads. If this is something that’s new to you, then let’s begin by defining how Google determine who’s “in market”.

To qualify someone as being in-market for a specific product or service, Google takes into account clicks on related ads and subsequent conversions, along with the content of the sites and pages they visit and the recency and frequency of the visits. In this way, Google accurately categorises users so you can target those most interested in your offerings.

For example, if Bill searches Google for “Jaguar XKR”, “Jag XKR” and then “Black Jaguar XKR” you could say with some degree of confidence that Bill is in-market to buy a Jaguar XKR. But what if Bill searches for “Jaguar XKR scale model” or “1:16 Scale XKR plastic Kit”?

Although finding exact details as to how Google determines who is or is not in-market isn’t easy, we have to believe that the algorithm behind this is pretty sophisticated. The clue to this lies in the “and subsequent conversions” piece of the above statement. Due to the widespread use of Google Ads conversion tracking and Google Analytics goals across the web – if anyone has a handle on which keywords convert, it has to be Google right?

What types of in-market audiences can car dealers use?

At the last count there were 170 unique in-market audiences available for you to target in Google Ads. For car dealers, this narrows down to the following broad categories:

  • Car Parts & Accessories
  • Car Repair & Maintenance
  • Motor Vehicles
  • Vehicles (other)

And then thinking slightly more outside the box you also have:-

  • Car Loans
  • Car Insurance

Within each of those categories, you then have sub-categories:-

  • Motor Vehicles
  • Motor Vehicles (New)
  • Motor Vehicles (used)
  • Motor Vehicles by Brand

Within “Motor Vehicles by Brand” we have 42 of the top selling brands from Audi to Volvo.

“Motor Vehicles by type” covers 19 types such as saloon, Sports Car, Vans & Minivans etc. Each of these sub-categories has a further sub-category for both new and used vehicles.

What information can we see?

This is all pretty new so we’re still experimenting, but it’s not hard to see the possible implications of “in-market” audiences.

Let’s say we’re running a search campaign for a “Mazda MX5”.

We would create our keywords, ad groups and ads as normal but we would also “attach” any in-market audiences we think might behave differently to the standard person searching this term.

So the immediately obvious in-market audiences that would be relevant to this car would be:-

  • Motor Vehicles by Brand > Mazda
  • Motor Vehicles by Type > Sports Cars (used)
  • Motor Vehicles by Type > Convertibles (Used)

But we could also look at more general categories such as

  • Motor Vehicles (New)
  • Motor Vehicles (used)
  • Car Loans

The key factor being that we can attach these audiences to each campaign or each ad group in “Observation mode”. What this means is that our ads are shown to the wider audience as normal, but we can see the KPI data broken down by the audience.

This allows us to monitor the performance of our campaign when shown to each category of in-market audience.  

Let’s assume we’re trying to see how in-market audiences impact click-through rate. The grab below shows how the CTR changes depending on which audience is viewing the ad.

In the example below, we can see that the ad is at its most compelling when shows to people in-market for a car loan and at its least compelling when shown to people in-market for the Mazda brand.

What’s more interesting perhaps is that even the least engaged audience in our example is leaps and bounds ahead of the general audience, which has a click-through rate of less than half of one percent!

How can we use that information?

Here’s the really clever part. We can adjust the amount per click that we’re willing to bid for each audience.  

If we’re willing to pay 25p per click for just anyone who searches for “Mazda MX5”, wouldn’t we be willing to pay more for someone that we “know” is in market for a “used sports car” – or for someone who we “know” is in market for a “used convertible”?

Things About In-Market For Search That Car Dealers Need to Know
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How automotive brands can use digital to pass the loyalty test

How automotive brands can use digital to pass the loyalty test

After a seven-year run, U.S. automotive sales are showing signs of slipping. That’s going to make brand loyalty even more important in the battle over market share.

Put simply, it’s more crucial than ever that automakers and dealers retain their existing customers. Forty-one percent of auto brand loyalists felt completely decided when beginning their research for a new car, meaning if you’ve built that connection, you’ve already won them over for the next sale.1 Search and online video can play key roles in building and maintaining loyalty.

We surveyed vehicle shoppers across the purchase journey and discovered three things that automakers and dealers can use to strengthen their loyalty strategy.

Reach the customer before they reach your lot

Auto shoppers say that the sales experience at the dealership is the No. 1 influencer of brand loyalty,2 but with dealer visits declining from an average of five in 2005 to an average of two today,3 brands have fewer opportunities to influence customers in person.4 The good news is that customers are more curious than ever, and they’re fulfilling that curiosity by conducting extensive research online before they ever set foot in a dealership. Ninety-five percent of vehicle buyers use digital as a source of information. In fact, twice as many start their research online versus at a dealer.5 This presents a huge opportunity for brands and dealers to influence customers before they get to the store.

1211 Inline 01

That means making a car buyer’s research process easier and creating an experience that is more relevant. Let’s say you want to reach shoppers who have been searching for Ford Ecosport dealers on Google and are close to making a purchase decision. You can now reach those same shoppers on YouTube with your Ford Ecosport video content. What kind of content? Consider virtual test drives, 360-degree views of the interior, or exterior walk-arounds. Over half (56%) of auto shoppers said they could be convinced to buy a car from a 360-degree video without having to test drive the vehicle.6

In other words, the first step to making the sales experience a positive one for consumers is making sure the pre-sales experience is one to remember.

Don’t forget about service after the sale

After the sales experience, a customer’s maintenance and service experience was ranked No. 2 in influencing automotive brand loyalty.7 Customers who service their vehicle at the dealership they purchased from were more likely to remain brand loyal than those who went elsewhere. But despite the fact that service is a key driver of loyalty, 1 in 3 owners said they serviced their vehicle elsewhere.8

1211 Inline 02

After a dealer makes the sale, service should become the number one priority. We know that nearly 25% of all automotive searches are related to parts, service, and maintenance.9 Dealers who want to re-engage their customers who are searching for parts, service or maintenance, can do so using Customer Match on Google Search. Dealers can personalize their message during the exact moment an existing customer may be searching for other service providers.

Evolve your messaging to match customers’ needs

It’s important to remember that even if a customer ends up becoming a repeat purchaser, more often than not, they’ll consider multiple brands before making their next decision. Of those customers who stay loyal, over 90% still consider at least one other automotive brand in their subsequent shopping journey.10 Price was the No. 1 factor for switching brands. But coming in at No. 2 were life events—like needing more cargo space for a new addition to the family.11

1211 Inline 03

As a carmaker or dealer, it’s critical to evolve your messaging with your customers’ changing needs. One way to do this is to engage with viewers who may be experiencing important life events, such as a college graduation, recent marriage, or a new baby. You can reach these viewers via online video and tailor your messaging depending on their evolving needs.

Get started by asking yourself these three questions:

  • What audience targeting strategies am I using online to influence customers before they set foot in the dealership?
  • How am I re-engaging customers online who are searching for vehicle service options?
  • Am I evolving the messaging I use online with my loyal customers based on big events in their lives?

Customer loyalty, while always important, becomes even more critical in increasingly competitive environments as sales begin to plateau. Automakers, dealers, and their agency partners should use digital to cultivate brand loyalty beyond the showroom floor.

Article originally appeared on Think With Google and was written by Kyle Keogh.

How automotive brands can use digital to pass the loyalty test
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The 20 Most Expensive Cars Sold at the 2018 Amelia Island Auctions

The 20 Most Expensive Cars Sold at the 2018 Amelia Island Auctions

Even with a thinner auction docket than the annual January sales blowout in Arizona and a headline concours event that can’t quite match Pebble Beach’s prestige, Amelia Island car weekend in Florida is held in high regard among vintage-car connoisseurs.

Porsches, ever major participants at Amelia Island festivities, stole eight of the top 20 spots for priciest sales at this year’s auctions, as observed by Hagerty Insurance. Remarkably, five of those pricey Porsches were built in the 1990s. Unsurprisingly, Ferrari products took over the podium, bringing the three highest sale prices and being the only cars this weekend that hammered for more than $2 million. Overall sales failed to meet Hagerty’s forecast and fell short of the 2017 results, but five auction houses still sold 334 cars for a total of $80.4 million—so don’t shed any tears. The following 20 rides accounted for $31.1 million of that total: You don’t need to know anything about Marmon, the Indiana car company that was victorious in the inaugural Indianapolis 500, to understand why this example is so valuable. Just look at it. The 20 Most Expensive Cars Sold at the 2018 Amelia Island Auctions

thumbnail courtesy of caranddriver.com

The 20 Most Expensive Cars Sold at the 2018 Amelia Island Auctions
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The auto dealer’s guide to moving metal in a digital world

The auto dealer’s guide to moving metal in a digital world

Fueled by innovations in technology and media, the auto industry is experiencing another period of disruption. In the past few years, we’ve seen the emergence of autonomous vehicles, the rise of ride-sharing platforms, and new entrants like Tesla that have streamlined the retail process. But while the pace of innovation has picked up, vehicle sales are showing signs of slowing down. On top of that, people are holding onto their cars for longer—an average of 6.5 years today compared to 4.3 years just a decade ago—making the bar for selling people their next vehicle even higher.1

And the reality is that today’s consumers interact more with your brand online than they do in person. A few highlights:

  • Ninety-five percent of vehicle buyers use digital as a source of information. In fact, twice as many start their research online versus at a dealer.2
  • 60% of all automotive searches come from a mobile device and some of the top mobile searches are related to dealerships.3
  • Nearly 25% of all automotive searches are related to parts, service, and maintenance.4
  • More than 40% of shoppers who watched a video about cars or trucks visited a dealer as a result.5

1150 Inline

When we dig a bit further into the process of buying a car, we see that search is the most commonly used source amongst all sources, including word of mouth, television ads, and even dealer visits.6 But search isn’t the only place shoppers look for information. Through online video, they’re now able to experience parts of the shopping journey that previously could only be done on the lot, including vehicle walkarounds, product demonstrations, and video test drives.

But all of this information that shoppers are gathering online isn’t just helping shape their decisions, it’s driving them into your dealership. So when you’re looking to reach new customers or retain existing customers, you need to reach them where they’re spending time: online.

The attached Dealer Guidebook is designed specifically to help dealers and their agency partners harness the power of digital to deliver the right message to the right buyer in the right moment.

Download PDF here.

1150 CTA Thumb

Article originally appeared on Think With Google.

The auto dealer’s guide to moving metal in a digital world
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Facebook Business – Introducing new discovery tools for auto

Facebook Business – Introducing new discovery tools for auto

Accelerating into the mobile future

To be successful in today’s auto industry, you can’t wait for customers to find you – you need to create intent by proactively reaching people in relevant and timely ways. We enhanced two of our ad products to try and help auto dealers solve this exact problem.

The auto industry has been constantly evolving throughout its 130-year history. Most recently, the rise of mobile has completely changed how people shop for vehicles. People are increasingly carrying out research online and making purchase decisions before pulling up to the vehicle forecourt. According to the 2017 Car Buyer Journey report, 56% of car buyers used a smartphone to access automotive information before purchasing their vehicle.

The people coming into a dealership are just a small subset of your potential customer base – and that’s why it’s helpful to generate intent before they arrive at your location. We’re introducing a brand new set of mobile features specifically designed to help auto companies expand their customer base: dynamic ads for auto and new updates to lead ads.

Show people tailored cars with dynamic ads for auto

When people are in the market for a car, they want to narrow what they see online to reflect the cars most interesting to them. Facebook dynamic ads for auto allow manufacturers and dealers to upload their vehicle catalogue with relevant details such as make, model and year. It then automatically generates ads that show the most compelling inventory to the right audiences – driving them towards vehicle detail pages, lead submission forms or other valuable places. With a single integration, you can make sure that your most relevant vehicles are always being shown to potential auto buyers – allowing you to focus on closing the sale.

Early testers are excited about this new opportunity to create ads that work for the auto industry.

 We’re excited to partner with Facebook on a new dynamic ad solution for the automotive industry, which builds on Edmunds’ extensive shopper insights to create the most relevant, personalised and informative ad experience, and helps drive shoppers to their perfect car. We are seeing promising upstream results from our early testing and are thrilled to continue to develop this offering for both our dealer and OEM partners.

Madhura Sengupta

Director of Advertising Product Technology, Edmunds

 Dynamic ads for automotive provides Cox Automotive with a scalable solution for serving compelling and relevant vehicle inventory to our qualified audience of in-market shoppers. Facebook’s recommendation engine is a powerful companion to our behavioural audiences, and the combination of the two ensures that we’re delivering the right creative to the right buyer. Early results have proven the product to be an effective solution for driving key onsite shopping activity.

Adam Pavkov

Director of Product, Cox Automotive

What makes dynamic ads for auto so effective for prospective and finding new customers?

  • It scales easily. You can dynamically generate a unique ad for every vehicle in your inventory without having to configure each ad individually.
  • It’s personally relevant. You can show people tailored ads based on interests and preferences they’ve demonstrated on your site, app or elsewhere on the web.
  • It’s always on. You can set up your campaigns once and continually attract shoppers who may be more likely to buy.
  • It works across devices. You can serve the right product to the right person, no matter which device they use – whether they’re on mobile, desktop or tablet.

Find more potential car buyers with lead ads for auto

When shopping for a new car, people may want to connect with a business directly from an ad. Facebook lead ads have been enhanced to simplify the process of capturing intent from people who are interested in your vehicle offerings. The secret sauce? An in-app experience that removes the friction of form completion. Lead ads for auto make it easy for people to sign up for information from your dealership, such as offers and quotes. People are sent to a form that’s pre-populated with their relevant contact info, such as their email address. They simply confirm what information they want to share with you, and voila – you have a lead.

That’s why we’re introducing new features to help auto companies find and connect with potential new buyers.

  • Locate your auto dealer. The locator feature helps people find auto dealers near them – simplifying the next step in their discovery process. It can also help you to better understand people’s intent and avoid sending them to suboptimal websites. If you have a dynamic set of locations, Facebook marketing partner Driftrock can help you keep dealer information in sync. This specialist solution ensures that people can find nearby dealers that will have the cars that they’re interested in.
  • A full-screen experience. Use Canvas to create immersive, visually appealing experiences to pique the interest of potential auto buyers before capturing their info. By providing more context up front, you can drive more high-quality leads.
  • Appointment preferences. People can communicate directly with service centres and dealers to indicate their preferred timeframes for appointments and test drives.

Article originally appeared on Facebook Business.

Facebook Business – Introducing new discovery tools for auto
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Top 2018 Automotive Digital Marketing Trends You Need to Know

Top 2018 Automotive Digital Marketing Trends You Need to Know

Digital Marketing is a dynamic industry that changes very quickly.

These trends can severely affect your marketing campaigns and, because of this, it’s important to understand what consumers want and how to handle your digital marketing.

Here are some of the 2018 marketing trends that you should consider incorporating into your marketing to boost your showroom traffic and sell more cars.


Early in 2016, Think With Google released a study by Luth Research that revealed the 900-plus digital interactions a vehicle shopper had leading up to her vehicle lease. It rocked the boat of automotive marketing and continues to affect how you should be marketing today.

For 2018, it’s less a matter of understanding these micro-moments and marketing accordingly, and more a matter of being an expert in reaching shoppers throughout the course of each micro-moment. If you haven’t already mastered these moments, then you need to find someone who can.

This study revealed where shoppers are, what they’re searching for, and what answers they need in order to purchase or lease a vehicle. You cannot waste this valuable information! You could be reaching shoppers throughout their buying journey with information that is prevalent to them – and if you’re not, your competition will take the lead.

For example, when shoppers are in their “where-should-I-buy-it” moments, they might search for “car dealerships near me”. During this time, shoppers will explore dealership websites, looking at their inventory, deals, and specials. At this time in your marketing, you’ll want to make sure you’ve considered paid-search options and have an excellent customer-facing website, or shopping tool so visitors can find the answers to their questions quickly and efficiently.

Social Video Sharing

Video was a key marketing trend in 2017 and it continues to dominate social media. Live streaming videos are watched 3x longer than prerecorded videos and YouTube is one of the most influential tools for vehicle shoppers. In fact, 69 percent of people who used YouTube while buying a car were influenced by it – more than newspapers, or magazines – making this trend key to automotive marketing in 2018.

Expect users to watch videos on mobile more than a personal computer. This means, not only do you need to be sharing videos on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more, but your videos have to be mobile friendly.

VIN Specific Campaigns

Have you ever shopped on Amazon and noticed ads following you around the internet with the same products you previously viewed?

With VIN Specific Facebook and Display Remarketing, you can follow shoppers around with ads that display vehicles they have already viewed on your website.

That’s what these tools can do for you. This high relevance of these ads will mean better results for you!

With VIN Specific Campaigns, you can reach vehicle shoppers with information about specific vehicles on your lot. These campaigns can be used for paid search or Facebook/display remarketing. By using your data management system to match specific car information to a search or vehicle shopper, you’ll be able to provide contextually relevant content to in-market shoppers – this is how you’ll win in 2018.

With VIN Specific Paid Search, you can match a vehicle in your inventory to a shopper’s search and serve them ads that feature information that’s specific to that vehicle like price and mileage. The shopper is then directed to the exact vehicle details page they have searched for. This means that you are able to serve in-market shoppers advertising that is so relevant to them, they’ve already searched for it organically.

Case studies demonstrate a high increase in clickthrough rates using VIN specific marketing techniques, which make it the automotive marketing trend to use in 2018.

Social Media

There’s never a dull moment in the world of social media marketing. It’s a constantly evolving world that’s increasingly necessary to the marketing industry.

By serving quality social media content – whether you share organically or serve ads, you can bump up engagement and increase your views (reach).

Just because it’s been done before, doesn’t mean it’s not worth perfecting in 2018. Keep in mind what your social media goal is. You need to get vehicle shoppers into your showroom. They’ll research online, but they’ll buy in person!

The most important thing for you to consider as you look into social media marketing, is what outlet to use. Find what outlet works best for you and your target market and how to best advertise through it.

Among U.S. users, Facebook is the number one social media outlet – in fact, 89 percent of adults in the U.S. use Facebook and 70 percent of those users spend nearly an hour on the site each day. Their closest competition is Instagram, which is owned by Facebook.  It’s also the second most popular website in the world (behind Google), so if you’re looking to get into social media marketing, Facebook is probably a good place to start. 

And, if you really want to get fancy, Facebook recently launched Facebook Marketplace – which opens a plethora of possibilities for dealers in 2018. 

Mobile Marketing

This goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: design for mobile. If your marketing isn’t tailored to mobile users, you’ve already lost the 18 percent of vehicle shoppers who only use mobile devices and the 53 percent of vehicle shoppers who use multiple devices. 

In addition, Geo-Fencing, though it’s been around for a few years, allows dealers to greet customers wherever they are and send nearby shoppers notifications about sales and inventory when they are active in your specific area.

Think With Google revealed that half of all car shoppers with mobile devices use their smartphones while at the dealership.   These shoppers are on the lot and have chosen a vehicle, but they want to make sure they’re getting a deal. They’re looking at competing dealerships and Kelley Blue Book to see if they can get a better offer.

This means you could conquest shoppers from other dealerships, while they’re on the lot – and they can conquest shoppers from you. Think about how you can catch them with marketing that speaks to their current needs.

The Takeaway

Today’s customer is much different than customers of the recent past. They are no longer headed to dealerships to find out the information they need. They’re spending all of their time (or at least most of their time) searching for vehicles online and making their decisions before they even consider heading to a dealership.

You have to adjust your digital marketing strategy to meet the demands of shoppers and the marketing industry. If you fall behind on any of these trends, you will give your competition the opportunity to advance. Shoppers are visiting fewer and fewer dealers before purchasing a vehicle and if you’re not one of the 1.4 dealerships the average shopper visits, you’re out of luck. You need to be the first dealership they visit, so that you can hopefully be the last.

Start with a plan and make sure you’re consistently monitoring it to determine what works, what doesn’t, and what strategies you could include that might boost your results.


Article originally appeared on Digital Dealer.

Top 2018 Automotive Digital Marketing Trends You Need to Know
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Carsnip’s search engine hits 800k car listing milestone

Carsnip’s search engine hits 800k car listing milestone

Carsnip has topped off its fastest year of growth to date by achieving an 800,000 car listings milestone during the last month of 2017.

The online car search engine reported that it was listing 800,000 cars through its platform across much of December 2017, nearly double the number available on its “next biggest rival”.

It also clais to represent more than half of the country’s car dealers on its site.

Carsnip chief executive Alastair Campbell said: “Ever since we started the aim has always been to create an online marketplace with the greatest possible choice for buyers and sellers.

“That means having more cars than anywhere else! That’s where most of our efforts in technology, time and investment have gone into as a result and now it’s paying off as we’re closing in on a million individual listings.

“For dealers, more choice means more potential buyers, so that’s faster sales for better prices. Our growth shows that demand is there among drivers for a new way of buying and selling cars.

“We’re giving people what they want – a simpler way to find the right car faster through car search that’s tailored to them.”

“We’re scaling up our team and infrastructure so we can keep growing at a sustainable rate. We’ve doubled the size of our team in a year and we’re planning to launch lots of new features for dealers and drivers using our site over the coming months.”

Article originally appeared on AM Online.
Carsnip’s search engine hits 800k car listing milestone
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Tracking the automotive digital consumer

Tracking the automotive digital consumer

Current changes to marketing within the automotive industry are being led by the digital consumer. For car brands, this means understanding their consumers in the way online retailers already do. That behavioural shift to digital has already happened and marketers are investing increasing time and effort into expanding their knowledge of their online audience.

Our data shows that the digital auto consumer journey has changed significantly in the past year. The picture is a brutal one:

The online consumer is in a hurry. Between commencing online research and buying a car, the gap has shortened to between four and six weeks. The time between a first visit to a car brand site and any resulting test drive request averages just six days.

Visitors tracked across multiple sites consider an average of 4.2 brands (five years ago the average was just 2.5 brands). Brand loyalty has clearly declined; interest in ‘the deal’ appears to be paramount.

The ‘surfer-researcher’ is hungry for information and impatient to receive it; the average duration of a site visit is two minutes and 51 seconds, and just four pages of content are reviewed on each visit. More than a third of visitors bounce – ie leave the website immediately after viewing just a single page.

Only 21% of visitors ever return to that same car brand site within 90 days, meaning that more than three quarters of visitors do not return within the span of the average purchase cycle.

The online consumer’s primary interest is in product information. 52% of all site visits go to model pages describing the brand’s cars and their characteristics. 21% of visitors will look at a vehicle configurator – online functionality that allows them to choose equipment, colour, and trim combinations for an individual vehicle ready to be ordered.

In the UK, during the first quarter of 2017, Tesla had an online audience equal to a fifth of Ford, the most visited brand. Tesla’s sales may not be there yet, but with registration growth of +74% in the second quarter, it shows the strength of the online data as an indicator of consumer intent.

Automotive marketeers have to become comfortable with such data – lots and lots of it.

Regrettably, over 90% of over 100 automotive digital managers and marketeers in London told Sophus3 that their own people and the mindsets of senior managers in particular were the greatest barrier to meeting these challenges.

However, to reach their audiences, they need to be nimble in its use, able to adapt and change as fast, as consumer behaviour is changing.


Article originally appeared on The Drum.

Tracking the automotive digital consumer
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