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Using Demographics Series: How to gather demographic data

Using Demographics Series: How to gather demographic data

Article published: 12 May 2016

The first instalment in our series of articles investigating how car dealers can use demographic data in their online marketing.

Hopefully, it’s not a surprise to suggest that knowing who your customers are (what age, gender, economic status and more) can help you to market to them more appropriately.

However, whilst it’s a simple conclusion to draw, knowing how to use the information (and where to find it) is a completely different thing altogether. As such, we thought it might be useful to put together a bit of a guide to how you can utilise demographics when selling cars.

For the first article in this series, we take a look at where can you find your customer’s demographic details. Keep checking back for the second instalment!

1. Ask your manufacturer

If you are a franchised dealer, you may have a head start here. Most manufacturers will keep track of what audiences are buying their car models – alongside what demographics they want to be buying their models.

Some manufacturers don’t have this data – but it’s worth pushing to see what they can give you. They should be more than willing to help – after all, the more appropriate your marketing the more new cars you may well sell.

2. Build up a customer demographic database

We mention data left right and centre, but your data can be really valuable to help you form demographic awareness.

Just keeping track of the age and gender of your buyers is a great first step, and there are plenty of companies out there who specialise in using your data to build profiles of your customers.

3. Track demographics via your website

Your actual car purchasing customers may be different to your website visitors, so why not use Google Analytics to look at who is visiting your site, and customise the site accordingly?

You can find demographic data via the audience tab in Google Analytics – it may need turning on as this isn’t enabled by default. Once it’s tracking, however, you will be able to see the age and gender of your website visitors, using Google data, and also get an idea of their interests.

Unsurprisingly, this information I really useful for research, and you can create segments to see what different audience segments do on your site.

4. Consider using YouGov Profiling

Last year YouGov, the well-known market research and survey company, released a profiling tool that can help with working out who buys what brands.

The LITE version of this tool is free if you sign up for an account, and can show us some interesting mindsets and demographics. It’s worth noting that they do things a bit differently here than just “25% of customers are male”. Instead, they compare the audience characteristics with the characteristics of the rest of the population, and list out the points on which they are most different. It’s important to remember this!

Why not try the tool out today?

If you need more, YouGov have a paid for service too that might be worth considering.

Next in the series we will discuss how you can take the demographic data that you gather and apply it to your website strategy and digital marketing. We’ll see you then!

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