Women Dominate Auto Decision Making and Purchasing Arena

An article on the decision makers & how they make their decisions (hint: it isn’t a commercial involving a rock song)

Women are the primary decision makers for over 80 percent of any major and minor household purchases, including cars where 60 percent of new car buyers are women, says Marti Barletta of Brandweek. Although, most car ads target men, women will actually make a purchase.

More than two-thirds of new-car buyers use the Internet during the shopping process, according to a 2006 study by J.D. Power and Associates. Knowledge is power and surfing the Web allows car shoppers to learn every detail about a car, including how much the dealer paid for it. Several third-party Web sites, not affiliated with the manufacturers or dealers, provide shoppers with the dealer invoice or the wholesale price on each car giving buyers a competitive edge in negotiating the price. Edmunds.com, for instance, provides what it calls “true market value”, an estimate of what buyers are paying for a particular car in a particular market.

While many women plan to take advantage of this information by conducting online research, in the end, they will request the attendance of a male counterpart. In accordance with a Capital One survey, 77 percent of women said they would bring a man to the dealership with them to make sure they get a good deal.

Over half of U.S. female Internet users, ages 25 and older, say the Internet is their main source for checking out potential product purchases, in accordance with “Online Insight” report published by Burst Media in June 2007. Online shopping increased with household income where half of the respondents with annual incomes of less than $35,000 bought something online in the past six months, while 68 percent of households with annual incomes of $100,000 or more had done so.

Conducting research via the Internet was the method of choice showing 10 percent or fewer of respondents stating they received their information from asking family and friends, reading newspapers and magazines, viewing television or referencing other sources.

However, as women consider the Internet a key source for product information, they refer to fewer Web sites on average in their research than men, states “Understanding Online Shopping Behavior Topline Summary” published by Frank About Women in March 2006. Adult female Internet users typically visited four or more Web sites during their research, while men visited an average of nearly five.

Barletta highlights some steps for marketers to consider while developing car ads for women:
Women don’t care about how many seconds it takes to reach 60 mph.

Women tend to be more interested in a car’s interior.

Women care about vehicle safety. Specifically, what happens when her car is hit, not if she can avoid it.

Women do consider the environment such as pollution.

From Digital Dealer
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Issue 28


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