J.D. Power and Associates and Compete Inc. Report: Considerably More Buyers Visit Third-Party Automotive Websites than Manufacturer Websites During the Six Months Preceding Ne...

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., July 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Among the 77 percent of new-vehicle buyers who use the Internet in the shopping process, more than two-thirds (68%) visit at least one manufacturer website in the six months leading up to purchase, while a larger percentage—nearly eight in 10&#

J.D. Power and Associates and Compete Inc. Report: Considerably More Buyers Visit Third-Party Automotive Websites than Manufacturer Websites During the Six Months Preceding Ne...

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., July 29 /PRNewswire/ -- Among the 77 percent of new-vehicle buyers who use the Internet in the shopping process, more than two-thirds (68%) visit at least one manufacturer website in the six months leading up to purchase, while a larger percentage—nearly eight in 10—visit at least one third-party website, according to the recently released 2010 Web Site Performance Tools Report—Wave 1,(SM) a collaborative effort between J.D. Power and Associates and Compete Inc.

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"Understanding the shopping patterns of new-vehicle buyers prior to purchase is key for both manufacturer and third party marketers seeking to secure the right ad placements, alliances and referral budgets," said Arianne Walker, director of marketing and media research at J.D. Power and Associates.

In each of the discrete six months preceding vehicle purchase, greater proportions of buyers visit third-party websites, compared with manufacturer websites, although this changes during the actual month of purchase. In the month of purchase, visitation to manufacturer websites increases to match visitation of third-party websites, with 31 percent of all new-vehicle buyers visiting each type of website.

"New-vehicle buyers are using both third-party and manufacturer websites at high rates in order to help them make informed decisions about purchasing a new vehicle," said Walker. "Therefore, it is critical that automotive brands and marketers understand which types of information are being sought on the various types of websites."

Among buyers who visit third-party websites, inventory search is the most popular website tool, with 25 percent of buyers accessing this type of information. Among buyers who visit manufacturer websites, vehicle building tools are used most frequently (29%).

"It is important for manufacturers and third-party websites to work together to provide shoppers with the most relevant information in the formats and locations they expect," said Walker. "Understanding where shoppers go and what information they seek on those websites is critical in meeting shopper needs and providing a good experience."

Among third-party websites, AutoTrader.com, Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book garner particularly high visitation rates from buyers overall.  Several third-party websites are the first stop for buyers shopping online. Approximately 7 percent of new-vehicle buyers who use the Internet while shopping visit Edmunds before any other automotive website. Individually, eBay Motors and Kelley Blue Book are the first websites visited by 6 percent of vehicle buyers shopping online.

Among manufacturer websites, Ford, Honda and Toyota attract particularly high visitation rates. In addition, approximately 3 percent of all new-vehicle buyers who use the Internet while shopping start the process on the Honda brand website.

The J.D. Power and Associates/Compete 2010 Web Site Performance Tools, Wave 1 results are based on clickstream(1) behavior of new-vehicle buyers purchasing a vehicle between January 2008 and December 2009.

About J.D. Power and Associates

Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services company operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, Web intelligence and customer satisfaction.  The company's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually.  For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies:

Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies (NYSE: MHP) is a global information and education company providing knowledge, insights and analysis in the financial, education and business information sectors through leading brands including Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, Platts, and J.D. Power and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries. Sales in 2009 were $5.95 billion. Additional information is available at http://www.mcgraw-hill.com/.

About Compete

Compete, a Kantar Media company, helps the world's top brands improve their marketing based on the online behavior of millions of consumers. Leading marketers such as Carlson Hotels Worldwide, Hyundai Motor America, Upromise, Chrysler, and Verizon Wireless rely on Compete's services to create effective online experiences and highly profitable advertising campaigns.  Compete's online behavior database—the largest in the industry—makes the Web as ingrained in marketing as it is in people's lives.

Compete was founded in 2000 and is located in Boston, MA, with offices throughout the U.S.  For more information, please visit http://www.compete.com/.

J.D. Power and Associates Media Relations Contacts:

John Tews; Troy, Mich.; (248) 312-4119; media.relations@jdpa.com

Syvetril Perryman; Westlake Village, Calif.; (805) 418-8103; media.relations@jdpa.com

No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and Associates. www.jdpower.com/corporate

(1) Clickstream technology involves tracking specific URLs that website users visit while on the Web.  

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