Netsertive Blog

Car Shoppers Using Mobile Phones More Likely to Buy Within Hours

December 02, 2012

A joint Nielsen-Telemetrics research study hit the Web recently, highlighting what our Netsertive auto marketing team has been experiencing in recent months as they run hundreds of online advertising campaigns for local dealers:

  • 50% of surveyed smartphone users purchase a car or truck within 24 hoursof conducting Web searches with purchase intent on their device
  • Nearly one-third of all Web queries for automotive keywords with purchase intent now come from mobile devices

The xAd/Telmetrics Mobile Path to Purchase Study(source PDF) makes it clear that local dealers must begin to put a greater emphasis on mobile advertising in 2013 to ensure that they’re showing up in top positions with properly-formatted ads to appeal to this unique customer type.

In fact, eMarketer reports that auto dealers are ahead of the curve and are mobilizing to move more of their online marketing dollars to mobile in 2013. Dealers had clear goals for their campaigns, with the top two being maintaining a market presence and driving traffic to websites.


Add to this the projection that mobile Internet use will very likely surpass traditional desktop Internet use in 2014 (Mary Meeker, Morgan Stanley), plus 25%+ of Internet users in the U.S. say they’re “mobile-only” and rarely go online via laptop or desktop computers (Alistair Hill, On Device Research), and it’s clear that local businesses must quickly adapt to this shift to maximize their online marketing efforts to better target mobile buyers.

The Telemetrics study also found that:

  • Mobile, in-market auto buyers use a Web browserto conduct searches over dedicated apps 92% of the time
  • 63% of mobile car shoppers conducting Google searches click on dealer search ads if it provides a mobile-specific coupon or discount
  • Post-engagement, mobile auto buyers are more likely tovisit local dealer websites as advertised, or redeem a special offer

As a result of these timely findings, digital dealers should take a hard look at the state of their websites to be sure content and inventory listings render correctly across all smartphone and tablet devices.

To add to the urgency, last month the Google auto team reported that local dealer websites are now the top source of research data for local buyers, surpassing OEM websites for the first time (Polk-Google Survey, Digital Dealer Conference).


Also of interest in the Telmetrics study is the finding that none of the top sites getting the most in-market buyer traffic use an m. subdomain, but rather direct buyers to a single URL for mobile (best practices).

“Last year, we decided we wanted real control over our Internet sales leads in the truck market. So, we hired Netsertive and they placed our ad in targeted Internet sites that had F Series traffic, and our traffic rose 40% and we sold twice as many trucks as the prior quarter. I asked Bob (Bob Wheat, Village Ford GM): How did the F Series go from doing 10 to 20 trucks per month in sales and the answer was: ‘Netsertive did it for us.’”

Netsertive online marketing programs include mobile-

specific campaigns, which offer their own unique strategy, geography, keyword categories and budget to turn smartphone and tablet searches into test drives and buyers.

Our digital marketing experts know that mobile shoppers are “power users” who are increasing using their devices on-the-go to make purchasing decisions. We also see that 4 of 5 top mobile actions are related to comparing vehicles and dealerships, while our proximity-based bids provides you with a competitive edge in your local market.

Call Netsertive today for a free consultation to make the most of these new mobile advertising trends at 1.866.777.5028.


The xAd/Telmetrics Mobile Path to Purchase Study was conducted in conjunction with Nielsen. The results are based on data from an online survey of 1,500 U.S. smartphone and tablet users, as well as actual observed consumer behaviors from Nielsen’s Smartphone Analytics Panel of 6,000 Apple and Android users. Data from Nielsen’s Smartphone Analytics panel is included to supplement the survey results. Survey respondent totals are as follows (none of which are mutually exclusive):

  • Smartphone owners: 1,371
  • Tablet owners: 738
  • Restaurant users: 1,413
  • Travel users: 931
  • Automotive users: 674


Netsertive ( has moved to the forefront of the digital ad tech industry with a vision of using technology to connect local consumers with products and businesses. Based in Research Triangle Park, N.C., the company automates localized digital advertising and channel marketing solutions, leveraging online search, online display, social media and mobile platforms. It provides standalone localized campaign automation as well as its innovative Digital Co-Op system, which combines brands and local channel partners in turnkey, cooperative online ad campaigns. Serving specific vertical industries, Netsertive helps local businesses, multi-location retailers and national brands increase sales in targeted local markets. Its expert team, patent-pending technology and unique platform drive results for clients across North America. Founded in 2009, the company has a history of rapid growth, a world-class team, and the strength of venture capital funding from top firms RRE Ventures, Harbert Venture Partners and Greycroft Partners.

Tim McLain

About Tim McLain

Tim is our Segment Marketing Manager here at Netsertive. He works cross-functionally with our sales, client success teams plus national brands to set the stage for digital marketing success. He's happiest when brainstorming new approaches to marketing and communications to help prospects and clients better understand, trust and embrace technology to grow their bottom line.