Survey Says: OEM Mobile Websites Need Improvement
"As usage trends continue to shift, mobile website developers are challenged to bring satisfaction up to par with that for other devices," said Arianne Walker, senior director of media and marketing solutions at J.D. Power and Associates. "Many of these challenges involve providing the content that shoppers want without sacrificing speed, consistency, and ease of navigation, as well as providing a visually appealing site for smaller screens."
The study examines the features and content of automotive manufacturer mobile websites and their usefulness in engaging shoppers who use a mobile phone during their vehicle-shopping process. According to the study, the top five types of information shoppers seek on mobile automotive websites are:
- Vehicle pricing (66%)
- Model information (54%)
- Photo galleries (53%)
- Vehicle reviews/ratings (52%)
- Vehicle comparisons (47%)
Previously, many mobile websites featured linear layouts and were text-based, with small text links designed for trackball and cursor navigation. According to the study, manufacturer websites that perform particularly well in appearance and navigation feature large, dynamic images and links that are suitable for touch-screen use. Additionally, current mobile websites host notably more content, replicating much of the desktop/laptop and tablet versions of websites that make the important content readily accessible.
Acura and Kia rank highest in a tie in the 2012 Automotive Mobile Site Study, each with a score of 794 (on a 1,000-point scale). Acura performs particularly well in terms of information/content, while Kia performs particularly well in terms of speed and appearance. Following Acura and Kia in the rankings are Mazda (789); GMC (787); and Jaguar and Ram in a tie (785 each).
"As shoppers increasingly use their mobile device to gather information during the shopping process and even at the point of purchase, the importance and value of mobile websites to both manufacturers and shoppers alike grow exponentially," said Walker.