Google India, along with Kantar TNS, today released a comprehensive report on the influence of digital on the decision-making journey of an automobile shopper. The report titled “The Drive to Decide” states that in 2017, 89% of Indian car purchases are digitally influenced, up from 75% in 2016. These auto shoppers exhibited three key digital behaviours: 96% of them are searching online, 80% are watching online videos and 88% of them prefer to research on their smartphones.
Elaborating on the influence of digital on the path to purchase, the report shows in the last two years, there has been a 2.5x increase in consumers who are taking only two months to buy a four-wheeler. Concurrently, the number of dealer visits have also dropped by 50% in the last three years. Finally, two-thirds of digitally influenced buyers are searching and discovering dealers online. Together, all of these are leading to shorter, more efficient buying cycles.
As per the report, online video is fast becoming a preferred information source that is allowing buyers to explore a new car from different perspectives. The percentage of online video usage in the process of buying a car in 2017 has nearly doubled, to 80% from 43% in 2016. Breaking up the types of videos consumers are watching; the report shows that 41% are vehicle safety tests; 41% showcase the technology and features of the car; 38% are on performance and 33% of them are customer reviews. Further, the report highlights that 79% of consumers who are watching online video are taking an action – underscoring the important role of online video in the decision-making process.
These findings were based on research conducted by Kantar TNS. The research covers 500+ respondents in each of the 27 markets (overall 13828 respondents in 27 markets) via online or face-to-face with an average survey length of 15 minutes.