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Old 9th August 2011, 22:31   #1
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Default Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

Google India releases a report on the auto sector in India today, providing deep insights into consumer search trends in the sector. A compilation of consumer search behavior in the auto category (Cars & Bikes) in the last two years (09 & 10), the Google India Auto Report underlines how Indian consumers are increasingly relying on the Internet to make auto purchase decisions.

High Points

- Indian consumers are ahead of US and Europe in using the Internet to research for Car & Bike purchases.

- The auto vertical witnessed tremendous growth in online searches registering 110% and 84% growth in 2009 and 2010 respectively on Google Search. The trend continues to show fast paced growth this year with the auto category showing a growth of 72% in the first six months of 2011 over the same period last year. The auto vertical is now also the fastest-growing vertical compared to other key verticals like consumer electronics, finance and travel.

- Vehicle shopping queries account for 49% of all auto related queries on Google.

- Entry & Mid segment cars in the price range of 2 to 6 lakhs are the most searched.

- Diesel cars are big in demand, and registered triple digit growth in 2010. Search queries for diesel cars saw a 52 % growth in April to May 2011 when petrol fuel prices went up by Rs 5 / liter.

- SUVs are the second most searched car category, followed by luxury cars which is the fastest growing car category.

- The report also looked into the search habit of mobile Internet users for the auto vertical. With an estimated base of over 40 million mobile Internet users, mobile searches for auto related queries also reflected a strong growth momentum - growing at over 300% in 2010. The trend of using smart-phones for doing product related searches is also showing a significant growth.

Most Searched Car Launches/Variants: From Jan 2010 to May 2011

1.Maruti Alto K10
2.Ford Figo
3.Hyundai i10
4.Maruti Kizashi
5.Chevrolet Beat
6.Nissan Micra
7.New Hyundai Verna -Fluidic
8.VW Polo
9.Toyota Etios
10.Maruti SX4 Diesel

Note: Data compiled on basis of search query volumes for car models 5 weeks prior and 5 weeks after the launch

Most Searched Auto Brands: Jan 2010 to May 2011

1.Maruti
2.Honda
3.Hyundai
4.General Motors
5.Tata Motors
6.Toyota
7.Ford
8.VW
9.Fiat

Most Search Bike Brands

1.Hero Honda
2.Bajaj
3.Yamaha
4.TVS
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Old 9th August 2011, 22:46   #2
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

Interesting report.

Surprised to see that Swift didn't make it to the list. Also, very surprising to see that Fluidic Verna has made within few months of launch.
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Old 9th August 2011, 22:50   #3
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by rameshnanda View Post
Interesting report.

Surprised to see that Swift didn't make it to the list. Also, very surprising to see that Fluidic Verna has made within few months of launch.

Since the report is based on 2009 & 2010 I guess that's the reason for not seeing the Swift.
Guess list shows a trend of 'searches' of new launches during that period.

Cheers!

Last edited by volkman10 : 9th August 2011 at 22:59.
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Old 9th August 2011, 22:56   #4
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Originally Posted by GTO
4.Maruti Kizashi
6.Nissan Micra
Maruti and Nissan should take of this. Two cases of missed opportunities, where companies could not cash in on market hype/ interest, because of poor pricing/ perceived VFM.

Infact, quite shocked to see Kizhasi at No.4 in that list. If only Maruti had gone CKD/built-in-india route and pitted it against civic/ corolla!

Edit: @rameshnanda: it's till may 2011.

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 9th August 2011 at 22:59.
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Old 9th August 2011, 23:04   #5
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

Mahindra is not appearing in searched List is interesting as they sell boleros in rural areas where word of mouth is significant than google.

Tata before Toyota is interestingly good Urban trend.
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Old 10th August 2011, 00:02   #6
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by harimakesh View Post
Mahindra is not appearing in searched List is interesting as they sell boleros in rural areas where word of mouth is significant than google.

Tata before Toyota is interestingly good Urban trend.
It is a very good point that you have raised. The top searched car models does have a correlation with the sales numbers; Alto being no. 1 followed by Figo, i10, Polo. However, the searches are primarily from a customer base which has internet access and internet savvy, so mostly restricted to urban areas at this moment. That yearning and desirability of the urban population is trending northwards is reflected by the fact Kizashi and New Verna making to the list.

I wonder if there is any market where the top searched models directly correlate to top sales list of new launches. The yearning factor must be skewing these results.
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Old 10th August 2011, 00:12   #7
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Google India releases a report on the auto sector in India today, providing deep insights into consumer search trends in the sector. A compilation of consumer search behavior in the auto category (Cars & Bikes) in the last two years (09 & 10), the Google India Auto Report underlines how Indian consumers are increasingly relying on the Internet to make auto purchase decisions.
A very interesting report GTO . Is the complete report available on the net free or paid?? Or if you have the same can you please share it?
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Old 10th August 2011, 00:38   #8
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by rameshnanda View Post
Interesting report.

Surprised to see that Swift didn't make it to the list. Also, very surprising to see that Fluidic Verna has made within few months of launch.
Swift is an old model. Nobody looks for information on Google regarding it. I mainly use google to search for test drive videos. For everything else there is Team-BHP.

Surprised to see kizashi. It is definately a great car. If only the pricing was more competitive and it had a diesel.
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Old 10th August 2011, 01:50   #9
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

@GTO, could we have a link to the actual report ?
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Old 10th August 2011, 07:22   #10
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Google India releases a report on the auto sector in India today, providing deep insights into consumer search trends in the sector. A compilation of consumer search behavior in the auto category (Cars & Bikes) in the last two years (09 & 10), the Google India Auto Report underlines how Indian consumers are increasingly relying on the Internet to make auto purchase decisions.
Thanks for sharing GTO. Does the report also show details of the top sites viewed based on the search results? Does T-BHP figure in it.
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Old 10th August 2011, 09:39   #11
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

A very interesting and unique report. Unique because, AFAIR(ecall), there are very few reports on search patterns by Indians with respect to the automotive industry. However, the findings of this report does not have a direct bearing on the Indian automotive industry per se. Let me explain, this report is about the 'googling' habits of Indian junta, and from what has been posted here, there is no data on the subsequent action taken by individuals, such as going to the OEM website, booking a test ride, booking / configuring a vehicle the latter part of the shopping funnel. I use the car comparison tool in third-party websites every other day, does that mean I will buy a car, no. Will I buy it in another 6 months? No. I am pretty sure there are many outliers like me in the report, many of them moving from www.teambhp.com

But the reasons why this report is very important because:
  1. It gives a cue to dealers to brush up their websites (if they have any at all) and encourage prospective buyers to do most of the pre-buying shopping there, such as variant / color selection, accessory selection, etc.
  2. Search engine optimization for OEMs. Search trends in the report do not reflect auto realities in India, if I may say so.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post

- Indian consumers are ahead of US and Europe in using the Internet to research for Car & Bike purchases.
This is a very misleading statement, IMO, again due to the nature of shopping tools provided online. In the US and Europe you can choose a variant, engine, color, trim, and pretty much everything. You can do everything online and just walk into a dealership to pay the money, get the paperwork done and take delivery. IIRC, you can even get your car home delivered! However, in India, online activity is pretty much restricted to comparison and booking a test drive. And why am I saying this? Because, due to the extent of online shopping allowed in the regions mentioned, 'research for car & bike purchases' have an altogether different connotation. Hence, although India may be ahead of the US and Europe in numbers, translation into actual sales as a consequence of online research, is still lesser in India than in the US or Europe.

It would be great to have a look at the full report.
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Old 10th August 2011, 09:58   #12
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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However, in India, online activity is pretty much restricted to comparison and booking a test drive. And why am I saying this? Because, due to the extent of online shopping allowed in the regions mentioned, 'research for car & bike purchases' have an altogether different connotation. Hence, although India may be ahead of the US and Europe in numbers, translation into actual sales as a consequence of online research, is still lesser in India than in the US or Europe.
My 2p:
- The report highlights the increased interest and booming market in India bought alive by consumers, in every segment
- It also shows how consumers turn to the internet to do their own independent research; this is important because this is a sign that consumers no longer go by word of mouth or by dealer persuasion
- It would be wrong to say that online activity in India is restricted to just comparison and booking test drives. Research, digging, opining and connecting with buyers, sellers and experts all over India (and abroad) is what's happening. This is very different from say pre-2005?
- Agreed that online researching, shopping and misc. in US and Europe is different and that dealers and in some cases the India websites of foreign manufacturers too need to undergo radical change. But to say that websites of dealers and manufactures should be the only place to visit on the inet would be wrong IMHO.
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Old 10th August 2011, 10:09   #13
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

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Originally Posted by dot View Post
I wonder if there is any market where the top searched models directly correlate to top sales list of new launches. The yearning factor must be skewing these results.
+1.

There cannot be correlation between top searches and sales numbers. If thats the case, then 458 & LP should have taken over the sales of Swift!

It is a great tool for the company to know if their marketing campaign was successful enough to create a buzz and then if the product was good enough to live up to it.

Alto K10 vs Kizashi.
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Old 10th August 2011, 10:54   #14
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Default Re: Google India's Auto Industry Report : Based on search trends

Honda is there as the 2nd most searched brand, but none of the Honda models are there in the most searched cars list! Interesting
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Old 10th August 2011, 11:36   #15
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Honda is there as the 2nd most searched brand, but none of the Honda models are there in the most searched cars list! Interesting
People are searching if Honda would ever launch a Diesel engine! Thats probably the reason for the search .

On a serious note, nice article there GTO.
Does it in any way mention the websites used for those searches? Or is it only the number of times a particular car/brand was searched for?
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