Today’s typical new car buyer has six core needs during their path to purchase, which can take up to nine months from when they decide to buy a new car to the actual purchase date, a new report released by NewsMediaWorks has revealed.
Whether they are in the market for a budget or luxury car, the Path to Purchase: Automotive Report found buyers seek six types of information (in order of importance): price, specifications, reviews, location of dealers, inspiration and recommendations.
To understand how to engage new car buyers on their path to purchase, NewsMediaWorks collaborated with Research Now to develop one of Australia’s largest path to purchase projects*. Unlike traditional path to purchase studies, which retrospectively look at consumer behaviour, this study gathered information from buyers in real time at four distinct stages of their purchase journey: recognising need; gathering information; forming a shortlist and making the purchase.
The research looked at paid, owned and earned media channels and found that new car buyers consider print and digital news media as a “one stop shop” for the information they are seeking.
News media was the most influential advertising platform during the research phase and forming a shortlist but becomes more critical in the final stage of the purchase, when consumers seek reviews and recommendations, with 50 per cent turning to news media for independent advice.
“The research shows news media performs consistently well in providing new car buyers with the important purchase information they seek. In fact, 54 per cent of new car buyers say their purchase decision was influenced by news media content, placing it considerably ahead of other paid media,” NewsMediaWorks CEO Mark Hollands said.
“Almost four million Australians turn to news media automotive sections each month for credible, trustworthy, independent information on cars. News media delivers at every stage of the path to purchase and enables car brands to connect with buyers when they are actively seeking information and making purchase decisions.”
The Automotive report is the first of four Path to Purchase studies NewsMediaWorks will release and will be followed by Travel, Electrical Goods and Health Insurance.
* The study surveyed 600 people captured at different stages of the new car-buying journey in July 2016.