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Comscore Captures Notable Rise of Mobile Vehicle Shopping

Monthly mobile vehicle shoppers averaged 6.6 million shoppers in the first half of 2020

As the world becomes more mobile-oriented than ever before, consumers are increasingly using mobile devices to conduct a greater share of vehicle research. New research from Comscore, a trusted partner for planning, transacting and evaluating media across platforms, shows that in the first half of 2020, the average number of monthly mobile vehicle shoppers was two times that of desktop vehicle shoppers.

From January to June 2020, there were 6.6 million average monthly mobile shoppers, compared to 3.5 million average monthly desktop shoppers. At the same time, when looking at digital shopping trends over time, mobile shopping and desktop shopping followed similar month-over-month trends.

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While overall mobile vehicle shopping is on the rise, device usage varied by automaker, shopper demographics and purpose:

  • Ford, Chevrolet, Jeep and Nissan drove more traffic on a mobile device than on desktop. Honda and Hyundai drove more desktop shopping. Dodge, Subaru, and Kia had more balanced shopping across devices.
  • Mobile usage skewed younger: the median age of mobile shopping was 49 versus 56 on desktop. 49% of those using a mobile device were under the age of 45 versus 22% on desktop.
  • Mobile shopping also skewed more female: 43% using a mobile device versus 33% on desktop.
  • Shoppers used different devices for different purposes throughout the shopping process: The use of a “Build Your Own” tools on automotive websites, used by shoppers to “build” or customize vehicle specifications, is seen more on desktop than mobile, likely because the tool requires more time and effort to fully engage, while the “Request a Quote” tool was used more on a mobile device, suggesting that it is used later in the shopping process, closer to purchase and after a shopper had narrowed down their vehicle selection. Tools such as “Locate a Dealer” and “Offers”—tools referenced as needed throughout the shopping process—saw more balanced use across devices.

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Comscore Automotive Data Mart tracks new vehicle shopper data via a proprietary database that examines online shopping behavior based on engagement with key lower funnel shopping activity on third-party automotive shopping sites on both desktop and mobile devices.

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