eBay Motors Group finds pricing beats brand loyalty for car buyers

Despite the massive investments made by car makers to nurture brand loyalty, the starting point for most buyers using car search websites is price, according to the latest Consumer Insight Panel study by eBay Motors Group.

The research asked buyers to list their top three filters when starting an online search for a car. Price emerged as a clear priority for over half (53%), followed by make and model (35%), fuel type (31%) and mileage (30%).

Other key first wave search considerations included age (28%), transmission (15%), body style (14%) and engine size (14%).

Emissions were the lowest consideration, accounting for just 3% of initial searches.

The independent research, which polled the views of over 2,000 in-market buyers, also identified the secondary criteria cars buyers applied after their preferred three filters. Topping the list was age (27%), followed by mileage (26%) and fuel type (25%).

“The survey reveals just how focused car buyers are on price and getting the best possible value for money, right from the start of their search,” said Lucy Tugby, Marketing Director of eBay Motors Group.

“It also highlights how flexible buyers are on make and model to keep within their budgets. Brand loyalty is not an overriding consideration.

“For most consumers buying a car is an infrequent purchase which is why their main starting point is price; they want a cost-effective and easy to find solution to their motoring needs. The challenge for dealers is to present prices as part of the overall value they can offer customers,” said Tugby.