Women and men are different, and therefore they shop for cars in different ways. There is a divide in who is believed to be the decision-maker when it comes to buying a vehicle. Many believe that car purchasing and vehicle maintenance are masculine hobbies, so it’s no surprise that a lot of automotive marketing messages are targeted towards men. However, did you know that there are actually more women who drive cars on the road than men? More women have a drivers’ licenses than men do globally. According to an NBCUniversal survey, women are responsible for 60% of all vehicle sales.
The issue is that there are still dealerships and car salespeople who treat women differently than they treat men. Women often report that they feel ignored or patronized at car dealerships. On top of that, women are quoted a price that is $200 more than the price that men are quoted on average. It’s no wonder that women feel they aren’t treated fairly when they visit a dealership.
The truth is that men and women are socialized in different ways and treated differently by car dealers. Many dealers are afraid to acknowledge the gender of their customer because they think it means they aren’t being equal, but that is not always the case. In the automotive industry it is important to recognize the different purchasing patterns in women and men and use that knowledge to give your customers the best experience.
How Men Shop for Cars
There is a stereotype that women make decisions based on their emotions more than men do, but according to CBS News, men tend to be more image-conscious and let their emotions influence the car they purchase. This is why men tend to be more interested in purchasing a European luxury car such as a BMW, Jaguar, Ferrari, or Maserati. Men are also more likely to ask about pickup trucks, coupes, and manual transmission cars. Many studies have shown that men feel more confident when it comes to purchasing a car than women. Men tend to value interior layout, exterior styling, and the technological features of a car. Are you stocking the right vehicles for your customers?
The car insurance rates for young men are much higher than the rates for young women. However, men and women over the age of 35 tend to pay a similar rate. This is likely because young men statistically get into more car accidents than young women do and because men are more likely to buy a higher priced car.
Words like “powerful,” “haul,” and “sharp” are more engaging to men. Consider using these words when you are catering to a male customer. Men also value a streamlined purchasing process and less wasted time, so it is helpful to stress the easy process that your dealership offers for purchasing and financing a car.
Automotive Buying Patterns for Women
Women tend to value durability, reliability, safety, and affordability when it comes to purchasing a vehicle according to a study by GfK. Women tend to prefer brands like Toyota, Honda, or Nissan. They are more likely to inquire about minivans, hatchbacks, and crossovers.
According to a study by AMP, women are more willing to invest time in researching and comparing different products than men are. When they visit your dealership, they are more likely to know the exact vehicles and features that they want. The top reasons for women for purchasing from a specific dealership included the sales advisor, dealership’s reputation, and the best price or deal. According to CDK Global’s Language of Closers research, women engaged more with words like “comfortable,” “handling,” and “trip.”
Women also use dealer reviews 50% more than men, which means that they are more likely to do an inspection of your dealership’s reputation. Female customers have a bigger impact on your word of mouth (WOM) marketing because they are more likely to share their experiences as customers to their friends and family. Are you managing your online reviews ?
How to Serve Your Customers Better
Don’t believe stereotypes. Instead, use these socialized differences as a way to understand your customers and serve them better. Men and women interpret body language and emotions differently. Most employees at car dealerships are men at a rate of 3 out of 4 male employees, so your sales people may not realize the messages they are sending to their female customers.
Most dealerships advertise a car, its features, and its price. Your advertisements should sell more than just your cars, though. You should also be advertising your dealership’s reputation, trustworthiness, and customer service. Your dealership branding matters just as much as the cars on your lot.
Interested in more automotive marketing tips? Our marketing specialists are eager to talk to you today. Give us a call at 515-232-2024 for a website analysis, Google Ads audit, and SEO check or send us a message at support@AutoJini.com.