An automotive revolution has begun, “click by click,” says Eric Brown, CEO and co-founder of Dataium, an information-tracking firm.
Then again, he is talking about a multitude of clicks from car consumers who are online researching product, reading reviews, checking inventory and submitting sales leads. About 90% of consumers use the Internet to car shop.
Dataium collects, aggregates and measures billions of so-called auto-shopping behavioral events from a database of more than 100 million active shoppers across a network of auto maker, dealer and other automotive portals.
In tracking and analyzing buyer behavior for dealership and auto maker clients, Dataium provides information on specific makes, models, vehicle segments and markets.
“We collect every auto-shopper click across all sites and portals,” Brown says at an automotive conference put on by the National Automobile Dealers Assn. and IHS. “Author Stephen Covey said, ‘We see the world not as it is, but as we are.’ Guess what? That’s the way it is with data.”
Dataium crunches numbers on car buyers’ inventory and product preferences. The firm also analyzes search-engine optimization and search-engine marketing to determine keywords that drive the most traffic and result in the highest conversion of leads.
“We can tell if the shopper is cross-shopping vehicles, has visited a dealer website, submitted a lead and how long he or she has been shopping,” Brown says. “That way, you can align messaging and timing.”
The firm also measures advertising effectiveness, digital-marketing performance and website-design proficiency.
Relevant information includes knowing what percentage of Internet users, after submitting a lead, are still shopping for a car 30 days later, he says, noting that people submitting leads from third-party websites typically are in the market longer.
He sees such number crunching as changing the auto industry. “If we can predict the future, we can change the future and get cars on lots that we know the shopper will buy.”