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How buyers get into gear


Buyers have a list of six demands they constantly review when they are in the process of finding a new car to purchase, according to research from NewsMediaWorks.

These core needs are:

  • Inspiration – what I’m really looking for
  • Price / Finance – the best deal
  • Specifications – how rival models match up
  • Reviews – what do media experts think
  • Recommendations – from family, friends and media writers

Car buyers use a wide range of media to help find the right car, according to the research conducted by ResearchNow on behalf of the industry body.

News media plays an important role in providing information relating to all six stages. TV and Outdoor also performed strongly across the spread of these demands.

The research finds Paid Search plays a small role in an average buyer’s search compared with the use of organic search, which dominates initial information gathering efforts. Social media, too, has little impact compared with traditional media channels.

These findings are consistent across the four stages of an average buyer’s purchasing approach, which is segmented as:

  • Recognising Need
  • Researching Options
  • Forming a Shortlist
  • Making the Purchase

The greatest sources of information on the core needs of a prospective buyer are News Media (print and digital), TV and Outdoor. However, the influence of these traditional channels fluctuates depending on the buying stage.

Late in the sales cycle, significant influence is wielded by manufacturer and dealership websites. These play a bigger role in determining choice than comparison websites.

The survey focuses on a 600-strong sample of buyers, all of whom were in one of the four stages of purchasing a new car.

The results, therefore, are not based on recollection but real-time feedback on each respondents’ specific emotions and considerations in their respective stage of the buying cycle.

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