Earlier today Nielsen, xAd and Telmetrics released the third part of their “mobile path to purchase” study conducted earlier this year. The research focused on three verticals: restaurants, travel and autos.
While almost all the mobile and tablet users doing research on these devices are highly qualified purchasers, there are differences in the consumer behavior from vertical to vertical. The data released today pertain to the automotive category.
The study uncovered four types of mobile automotive users:
- Auto researchers
- Deal hunters
- Circumstantial or emergency users
- Gear heads
They each had different demographic and income profiles. And they behaved somewhat differently accordingly.
Overall the study found that half of the mobile automotive search audience were doing longer term research but roughly half (49 percent) were “looking to make a purchase within the day.” However 36 percent of this group converted “within the hour.”
Source: xAd-Telmetrics “mobile path to purchase” study conducted by Nielsen (Q2 2012), n=1,500 survey respondents and behavior observed from 6,000 Apple and Android users
Compared with the other categories app (vs. mobile web) usage was less in automotive. The study sponsors opined, “Of the 15 percent of mobile consumers conducting mobile Auto searches, less than one percent are using apps – likely because their occasional use of the category doesn’t demand the day-to-day benefits of app usage.”
The report also identified differences between smartphone and tablet user behavior in the automotive category:
- Tablet users spent more time looking at reviews and doing price research than smartphone users
- Tablet owners were 3x more likely to be influenced by positive reviews than smartphone owners
- While 36 percent of smartphone auto searchers want to covert within the hour only 15 percent of tablet users do (reflecting the more “relaxed” and less urgent behavior of tablet owners)
- A substantial percentage of smartphone users (42 percent) conducted lookups and research while in their cars (need it now)
The top auto-search activities and information sought were the following: business locations/directions, pricing information and phone numbers.
The information above is a snapshot of the data in the full report, which you can obtain online here (after registration).