It’s been the story for years that all us car buyers are no longer the loyal beings we once were. Gone are the days when we’d just step up into the latest model from the same brand.
The internet, for a start, has made everyone double and triple check every single purchase decision – from which car, to which dealer and which finance package.
What’s surprised us a little, however, is just how volatile people’s car choices are even up to the moment they sign on the dotted line for their new motor.
A recent poll on DriveTribe showed that a staggering 45% of our car buying audience think they know which car they want, but always do a last minute check of competitors before making the leap.
Of the 17,386 people polled on DriveTribe, 39% said they knew what they wanted and would make their purchase without wavering. Then 11% would be swayed most by the car that has the best deal, while only 5% of respondents would buy from the brand they always choose.
Premium buyers are a little more decisive
We then split the respondents into those who currently own cars from premium brands, and the picture changed slightly.
The segment of informed and decisive buyers grew from 39% to 46%, while the last-minute waverers dropped from 45% to 41%. Brand loyalists stayed the same – at 5%.
In short, premium buyers are slightly less likely to be swayed from their choice of car at the last minute – but a huge number will still cross-shop at the last minute, presumably open to being swayed by a friendly local dealer, a better APR or – perhaps – a favourable YouTube review of a competitor car dropping into their notifications.
This data just goes to show that you can’t count on securing a customer until the last moment – and that targeted marketing offers landing on their screens lower down the marketing funnel could have a decisive impact on their eventual decision. Conquest marketing, therefore, has never been more important.