Every Auto Dealer’s wish for this Christmas is to draw more traffic to their website and generate leads. Though, after exhausting efforts and minimal results one may ask “what can I do differently to bring interested buyers to my site?” The answer lies in knowing who your customers are, and the best way to learn who your customers are is by researching the demographics of your area.
What are demographics and where can this information be found? Demographics are “the statistical data of a population, especially those showing average age, income, education, etc.”. There are various valuable resources online such as USA DATA or Data USA that will provide current updates for demographics in your city. For more accurate data, every ten years there is a Census performed in the United States with the next taking place in April of 2020. The data from the Census will be more accurate and in-depth than any other source found online. Someone’s background will tell you a lot about their preferences and essentially demographics will take all this data and show you what the majority of the population of your city looks like compared to the national average.
Why is this important? With the Auto Industry being such a saturated market and each city consisting of a multitude of dealerships for potential-buyers to choose from, it is imperative for the viability of any dealership to understand the needs of their customers. By knowing the demographics of your city, you can select a target market. This is important, because the needs of those aged 20-30 will be drastically different than those aged 60-70. If research shows your city has an average age of 65, then your focus should be geared towards fulfilling their needs, since they represent the majority of potential customers in your area. Advertising is costly and by knowing who you are marketing to you can optimize the effectiveness of your marketing efforts by providing targeted offers and incentives that make sense for your target market. Better understanding who your customers are, where they are, and what will interest them will allow the picture to become clearer about what your focus should be in order to attract unique traffic to your site.
Lastly, how can you interpret the data to make sense of what it’s telling you? At first, the numbers may not be so cut and dry, but if you dig deep you can realize the value in these seemingly meaningless statistics. For instance, the demographics for a given city might show the following statistics: Median age is 40, high household income compared to the national average, lower poverty rate than the national average, higher percentage of females unemployed compared to national average, longer commute to work than national average, most individuals drive themselves to work rather than carpool/take public transit, and more individuals own their homes rather than rent.
What may this information tell us? The fact that there are more unemployed women than the national average may seem like useless information, but combined with some of the other data showing that the average household income is higher than the national average and poverty rate is lower than the national average, it shows that this city may be made up of traditional-type families with affluent males that support the family and mothers that stay at home to care for their children. Knowing this, a dealership would most likely have more success offering them an SUV type vehicle that has plenty of room and storage space for a family, rather than a truck or sedan.
What else do we know? We know that most of these individuals drive themselves to work, have a long commute, and prefer to own rather than rent. This being the case a dealership may have most success offering fuel efficient vehicles with better financing options rather than leasing. When these potential customers in your area are researching vehicles online and come across a fuel economic SUV with great financing options for a limited time only it may prompt them to buy from you rather than the plethora of competitors in the area.
Now is the time to start paying attention to demographics! With the holidays right around the corner and the 2020 Census coming up, make sure you’re budgeting wisely and offering deals that make sense for your customers. If you do your research and accommodate the hard-working individuals in your city, you will be rewarded with the traffic and leads you have been wishing for.