Young Car Owners in Taiwan Rely on Internet to Influence Vehicle Purchase Decisions, J.D. Power Finds
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Mitsubishi Ranks Highest among Mass Market Brands in New-Vehicle Sales Satisfaction
SINGAPORE: 31 Aug. 2017 — Young car owners in Taiwan increasingly look to online channels when shopping for their vehicle, according to the J.D. Power 2017 Taiwan Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study,SM released today.
Young car owners—below the age of 35—account for 27% of the car owner population in Taiwan. More than three-fourths (78%) conduct online research while shopping for their new vehicle, compared with 64% of car owners 35 or older. Moreover, there is a greater proportion of uncommitted shoppers among young car owners (31%) compared to car owners 35 or older (26%). Nearly half (44%) of them visited at least two brands before reaching a final decision, as compared with 39% among older owners.
While young car owners rely heavily on the internet for vehicle information, 75% will refer to the auto section of consumer/ news websites or web portals and 69% will visit dedicated car websites/ forums for reviews and comments.
“Instead of solely relying on recommendations of salespeople, young buyers are increasingly researching reviews and feedback online before visiting the dealership in order to get a better idea of what is available in the market,” said Kaustav Roy, director at J.D. Power. “This group of customers is savvier when it comes to purchasing a new car and view fuel efficiency as the most important factor. They also post more comments online about their shopping experience, and are therefore a greater source of influence to other potential buyers.”
Satisfaction among young car owners averages 800 (on a 1,000-point scale) vs. 789 among those 35 or older. However, the incentive to review their sales experience online is not driven solely by negative experiences, with 27% of highly satisfied young customers (868 and above) having reviewed vehicles online via blogs, forums or social networking sites vs. 20% of highly dissatisfied young customers (719 and below.)
Following are additional key findings of the study:
- Younger car owners are more sensitive towards vehicle price with sales satisfaction dropping to 772 from 800 for younger car owners when the vehicle price paid is more than their expectation, as compared to 788 among owners age 35 and older.
- Among the 57% of customers who choose to replace their current vehicle, 41% traded in their old vehicle, showing a continued increase since 2015 (24% in 2015 and 33% in 2016). Satisfaction with the shopping experience is higher among trade-in customers than non-trade-in customers, 814 vs. 777, respectively. Conversely, in 2016, non-trade-in customers had a more positive experience, 795, compared with 748 for trade-in customers.
- Overall satisfaction among customers who are offered a test drive averages 793, but drops to 785 when a test drive is not offered. The percentage of customers offered a test drive this year climbs 2 percentage points from 2016 (90% vs. 88%, respectively).
- Almost three-fourths (73%) of salespeople are in charge of the finance application process, down from 82% in 2016. Overall satisfaction with the deal is higher when the application is handled by the salesperson (778) rather than someone at the dealer’s finance desk (753) or the finance company itself (748).
Overall sales satisfaction in the mass market segment averages 792 points in 2017. Among the nine brands included in the segment, Mitsubishi ranks highest in satisfaction with a score of 799. Mitsubishi performs particularly well in the factors for deal; salesperson; delivery timing; and delivery process. Toyota ranks second with a score of 798, performing particularly well in dealer facility and salesperson. Honda ranks third with a score of 797.
About the Study
The 2017 Taiwan Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study is based on responses from 2,423 new-vehicle owners in the mass market segment who purchased their vehicle between July 2016 and March 2017. The study, which was fielded from January through May 2017, measures new-vehicle owner satisfaction with the sales and delivery experiences from authorized dealers in Taiwan.
Now in its 19th year, the study examines six factors that contribute to overall customer satisfaction with the new-vehicle purchase experience. In order of importance, they are delivery process (20%); dealership facility (20%); salesperson (19%); deal (16%); delivery timing (13%); and sales initiation (12%). The study examines sales satisfaction in the mass market segment.
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About J.D. Power in the Asia Pacific Region
J.D. Power has offices in Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo that conduct customer satisfaction research and provide consulting services in the automotive, information technology and finance industries in the Asia Pacific region. Together, the six offices bring the language of customer satisfaction to consumers and businesses in Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. J.D. Power is a portfolio company of XIO Group, a global alternative investments and private equity firm headquartered in London, and is led by its four founders: Athene Li, Joseph Pacini, Murphy Qiao and Carsten Geyer. Information regarding J.D. Power and its products can be accessed through the internet at asean-oceania.jdpower.com.
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