E-commerce continues to be on a rapid path of growth in the automotive aftermarket industry, especially as the average age of automobiles climbs beyond its current record of 11.4 years. According to new research by UPS and comScore, 56% of online automotive parts and accessories shoppers are making their purchases online – an 8% increase over the previous year.  Automotive aftermarket e-tail revenue is projected to double within three years.

Automotive aftermarket e-tail revenue is projected to double within three years.

Other key findings from the study indicate:

  • Online comparison shopping increased 12% since 2014, with 95% of online automotive aftermarket consumers now comparing products and prices before they buy.
  • A majority (63%) use online coupons and 52% are more likely to shop with a retailer if they receive email offers with discounts.
  • Online shoppers buying auto parts use ship-to-store 55% of the time, which is a 14% increase from the prior year, as part of a growing trend toward increased convenience and no-cost ship-to-store pricing.
  • An additional 10% of consumers, 86%, strongly prefer to return items to a store compared to the prior year.
  • Replacement parts shoppers primarily look for the best price and availability, while upgrade customers are researching product details and reviews.
  • The top reasons that consumers shop at one retailer over another are price (52%), product availability (45%) and selection (37%).
  • 63% like to receive email or text delivery alerts with the approximate time of delivery, up from 47% in 2014.
  • Consumers who are shopping for auto parts online are increasingly mobile, researching products, reviews and pricing, with 43% using mobile devices to compare prices, 43% using mobile to look up product reviews, and 41% using mobile to read product details.

The study also revealed some interesting comparisons among shopper segments.

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