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90s generation least willing to buy car online

Martin Guo

Editor-in-Chief, Kantar China Insights

Auto 16.03.2016 / 11:00

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A recent TNS Sinotrust survey shows that compared with other generations in China, the 90s generation are least willing to buy cars online.

On average, 51% surveyees said they will not consider buying cars online, while only 17% said “yes”, and the rest 32% said “not sure”. The naysayer’s proportion is highest among people born after 1990, among whom 57% said “no”, while 15% said “yes” and 28% said “not sure”.

The most online-ready car buying group is so-called pre-80s generations: only 44% said they’re not going to buy cars online, while 24% said they’ll consider it.

Buying Online Or Not

TNS Sinotrust jointly launched the online survey with Tencent Auto and National Business Daily, and collected 3,212 valid answers.

This maybe come as a myth buster for many because the 90s generation is widely seen as the most active online shoppers in China. But the research shows that things are different if the item is as expensive as a car. For 90s generation consumers, 56% cited “not comfortable with buying big-ticket items online” – 10 percentage points higher than the average. Some of them (21%) also pointed out that cars being sold online “don’t have price advantages (over other channels)” – 3 percentage points higher than average.

Why Not Online

Will brands cut online prices change young consumers’ mind? It seems they have to play this very carefully, because 90s generations are most concerned about price-cutting’s negative impact on brand image.

Nearly 35% of 90s generation consumers think price-cutting will “significantly” or “very significantly” affect a car brand, while the average is only 28.5%. The least worried age group is pre-80s generation, among whom only 26.1% think price-cutting will affect a car brand.

Probably the good news is that brands still have some time to work out a better marketing strategy. Only about one third (34%) of all surveyed consumers planned to buy a car within two years, and the trend is same for all age groups. For all consumers, 23% said they planned to buy a car in “between two to four years”. The proportion for 90s generation is 26%, the highest among all generations.

About Time

Source: Kantar TNS Siinotrust

Editor's notes

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