Fewer Consumers Submit Automotive Lead Forms

March 19, 2015

Fewer consumers are submitting lead forms, which is challenging how auto dealers engage their consumers online.

In its latest report of online activity on auto-dealer websites, automotive research firm Dataium reports another drop in the number of vehicle shoppers completing online contact forms. In January, only 1.9 percent of vehicle shoppers completed these online forms to contact dealers.

Fewer Consumers Submit Lead Forms

Fewer Consumers Submit Automotive Lead Forms

Research shows that consumers are becoming much more efficient in their car shopping, and as a result, they’re visiting fewer car dealerships.

J.D. Power notes that consumers are shopping on the Web for nearly 14 hours prior to buying a car, and end up visiting an average of 3.3 physical dealerships prior to buying. The number of stores visited is steadily decreasing, year-over-year.

Cars.com research shows that only half of car shoppers contact the dealership before they visit. Most shoppers said “they felt (contacting the store) was unnecessary given the information available online. The result is that shoppers are visiting fewer dealerships, and those visits are overwhelmingly driven by online influences.”

With sites like TrueCar claiming that mobile traffic already accounts for more than 50% of all of their consumer audience (and forecasting this will get to 90% within a few years), dealers will be increasingly challenged to find the best way to attract and engage in-market car shoppers online, and then smooth their transition to their in-store process.