Forget stuffing the turkey, let’s go buy a car! Or at least spend a lot of time on the Internet searching for one.
Hyundai has upped its Black Friday game this year, with the brand commanding more than 90% of Black Friday searches for auto, according to Captify. It might have something to do with its "Shopper Assurance" program, which aims to ease the buying process.
I personally received a consumer-directed email from Hyundai on Nov. 22 touting its $199 lease specials. It wasn't over-the-top. The subject line simply stated "$199 lease deals going on now."
The body of the email featured the headline "The season of savings is here" with a photo of the 2020 Elantra, Santa Fe and Tucson models. The copy read: "Turn over a new leaf this fall by getting into a new Hyundai. Right now, we have big savings on all your favorite Hyundai vehicles. It’s the perfect time to get into that sporty SUV or stylish sedan you’ve had your eye on. Schedule a test drive today and check out all of our amazing offers." It featured a link to "Special offers."
Other auto brands on the Black Friday leaderboard, according to Captify, are Audi, Ford, Toyota and Kia.
Even if they didn't make the list, there's good news for all automakers. For the first time, Captify is seeing “auto” as one of the top-searched-for categories for Black Friday. It might be hard for some consumers to fathom making such a big purchase during the holiday season, but if the deals are good enough, maybe it’s enough to push a “maybe” to a “yes.”
“Black Friday is no longer just about headphones, gaming consoles or home appliances…what we’re seeing is Black Friday is now anyone’s game," Anand Siddiqui, Captify’s global vice president, insight and analytics, tells DriveTime. "Hyundai, in particular, have seen a big increase in auto searches. On the surface, we can attribute this to the fact that Hyundai has been pushing holiday deals, but when looking deeper into connected searches, it's being driven specifically by intent for leasing deals for Hyundai’s 2019 Sonata model. With auto brands rolling out some major discounts to fuel end of year sales, Black Friday proves to be a great platform to engage with car buyers.”
Captify collected data from across 27.2 million unique users and more than 72.3 million Black Friday searches to understand how different audiences are searching for brands and products.
The company looked at other audience search behavior across multiple retail categories. In addition to auto, more than 46% of Black Friday searches are brand-specific, which is three times higher than last year. This shows strong shopper intent and reinforces that consumers know what they want even before deals are released.
This year, Captify saw searches for Black Friday spiking 31 days before the official sales bonanza, more than 18 days earlier than 2018. Does this mean the economy is good and consumers are ready to spend, or alternatively, does it mean getting a deal is more important than ever?
Based on consumer behavior analysis, Captify discovered two key audiences searching around Black Friday.
There are “Super Searchers” who are brand fanatics and loyalists. From October through November, this audience searches for the same brand more than 12 times, which reflects high intent for purchasing that specific brand.
With “Super Searchers” making high consideration purchases, over 89% of their Black Friday searches are on desktop with very few searches across mobile and tablet. They’re most likely to search in the mornings and late at night.
On the other hand, “Deal-Savvy Searchers” have low brand loyalty and are focused on offers, offers and more offers. From October through November, this audience searched for more than nine different brands, reflecting low loyalty to specific brands.
Data was collected by Captify from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30 2018 and Oct. 1 to Nov. 21, 2019, from 41 billion monthly searches that Captify captures across premium publishers, specifically related to interest categories and audiences searching around Black Friday.