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Platform Insight: February 2016

Posted by Ashley Karr on February 26, 2016

Last month we compared buying intent on desktop and mobile, concluding that mobile shoppers are no less interested in submitting leads (and making a purchase) than CarGurus desktop users.

This month we’ll take a different angle on the desktop-vs.-mobile conversation. Let’s investigate whether browsing behavior is different from one platform to the other.

Do desktop shoppers spend more time browsing VDPs than mobile users? Or does mobile, which makes up well over half of CarGurus’ overall traffic, win in VDP visits, too?The tally is in, and desktop is tops for VDP views.

We averaged together VDP-view data for all of our traffic (desktop + mobile + the CarGurus app), then compared desktop and mobile to that overall average. CarGurus mobile users view 11.2% fewer VDPs per session than the average, while desktop users view 12.1% more.

Does this translate to more email lead submissions for desktop users? On an individual user basis, somewhat surprisingly, the answer is no. A mobile user who submits at least one lead will reach out to the same number of dealers as desktop users who submit 1+ leads.

And if you consider that many mobile users are going to call dealers, rather than fill out a lead form, mobile may even have an edge in terms of leads per unique user.

But it does appear that desktop is comfortably ahead in terms of VDP views. This can be attributed to a few factors: one is the tabbed browsing available in desktop browsers, w203038.jpghich makes it easy to open VDPs in new tabs. PCs’ larger screens are another factor: visiting CarGurus on desktop, you can see an entire VDP, including photos, without having to scroll.

Independent research suggests that these findings are going to be consistent across the auto shopping universe. Ipsos Media found that consumers prefer desktop for “customizing vehicles” and “comparing specs”. Mobile is seen as preferable for “reaching out to family/friends” and “reaching out to salespeople”.

Maybe the real lesson is that both desktop and mobile are used widely among auto shoppers – albeit for different purposes. For this reason, an outreach strategy that includes both desktop and mobile will ultimately help you win more leads.

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Topics: data