Identifying User Intent For Automotive Marketing

As an automotive marketer, understanding your audience and their intent is crucial to getting your product or message out to your customers. Each consumer is different, and even though they may be searching for the same overall product or service they may not be at the same stage or going about it the same way. Identifying where a user is in within the purchase funnel along with capturing their intent at that specific point in time is everything when it comes to driving leads.

Top Funnel Consumers

Top funnel consumers are at the beginning of their buying journey. These users are driven by heavy research intent and search for broad & general queries about brands and models. They typically aren’t set on a specific model or brand, and they’re looking for guidance in the right direction.

Identifying users who are at this stage offers the opportunity to be the first to provide information to them while building trust. One key takeaway in article by Google about capturing your user before the dealership, “New research shows that being there and useful in a consumers initial search leads directly to dealership visits.”1 If you can capture users at the beginning of their buying journey, the odds are greater that they return to you for the final purchase. If you successfully capture a user in the early stages of their journey, you build trust between your dealership, the brand, and the consumer.

Mid-Funnel Consumers

Mid-funnel users are those who have done brand or model research, and are now seeking more specific information. Their search is becoming more refined and these users are coming to a general consensus on the vehicle they want.

Users are beginning to ask themselves, “Should I get the Altima or the Camry?” or, “Which trim option would be best for me?” To address consumers’ need for this new type of information, it’s important to create content that is more specific rather than general in order to capture these new queries.

This content should provide the final pieces of information the user needs to choose their vehicle while properly funneling them towards the final step of their journey: the purchase.

Bottom Funnel Consumers

Bottom funnel consumers have done their research and coming to the end of their journey. They know which brand, model, and trim they want, and they’ve chosen every feature down to the interior stitching.

Users at this point are ready to buy and have real purchase intent. They are looking for the best offers and friendliest dealerships. They know what they want and now they are deciding where to get it. They are asking questions such as “Am I getting the best deal” or, “Where should I buy my car?”

According to a Google article about consumer micro moments, “…even when consumers have decided on a vehicle and are on a car lot ready to buy, they still want real-time advice that they are getting the best value.”2 In the final stages consumers want to know they can trust that the dealership is giving them the best possible deal.

The dealers that stand out at this point of the buying process are the ones that recognize purchase intent and turn it into a sale through unique content and engaging calls-to-action.

What it Comes Down To

If you’re looking to drive more automotive leads using digital marketing, capturing user intent and identifying the user’s journey is the road to success. No matter the channel, satisfying user intent is where conversions really begin, so make sure to ask “What does the consumer want at this stage?” or, “What next steps would the consumer want to take after this stage?”.

We at Aronson Advertising ask ourselves questions like this everyday when forming our digital strategies across PPC, Social Media & SEO. If you can provide a solution to users’ needs when purchasing a car, you can create successful automotive marketing campaigns that consistently drive user acquisition.

Need help capturing your consumers’ user intent? Contact our team at Aronson Advertising to increase your websites user engagement and drive more leads!


1. Sharon Chen, Aditi Manwani, Steven Shin, Think With Google,, February 1st, 2018
2. David Mogensen, Think With Google,, February 1st, 2018

Learn how Aronson can help your business grow!