Here & Now: Online Parts Retailing Study

Wiper blades were one of the top online purchases, according to the AIA/Quorus study. (Photo: Huw Evans)

Since AIA published its last report, online automotive parts spend has more than doubled.

Online retailing is now well established, yet the trend continues to evolve as do the kinds of products consumers look for and purchase. Recently, the Automotive Industries Association of Canada (AIA Canada) released its second report as part of its Consumer Behaviour Series—What’s in Your Online Cart? A Study of Automotive E-tailing in Canada.

Conducted in conjunction with Quorus, the study aimed to conduct a similar investigation into the state of Automotive E-tailing in Canada at present, with the aim of comparing the results against the 2016 Report.

The findings from this latest report showed that, among those people surveyed…

  • Vehicle Prices, vehicle valuation or vehicle shopping were the most sought-after information (32% of respondents)
  • Online searches for purchasing tires or other vehicle related services (28% of respondents)*
  • Online searches for vehicle ratings and reviews (20%)
  • Online searches for parts prices— excluding tires—(15%)
  • Online searches for how-to vehicle repair videos (12%)
  • Online searches for vehicle component purchases—excluding tires and fluids—(11%)
  • The new study also found that residents in Alberta were more likely to search for online vehicle repair videos than those living in Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia
  • Vehicle owners that use both dealers and aftermarket service providers were more likely to search for online reviews than those that just used one or the other
  • Vehicle owners that used ASPs exclusively were more likely to search online for a specific repair procedure

The study also showed that among automotive parts, consumables such as motor oil (33%) wiper blades (30%), washer fluid (25%) and brake pads (22%) were the most popular categories, with transmission (6%), belts and tensioners (5%) and exhaust parts (5%) being the least popular items.

Yet the trend toward online searching and purchasing of automotive parts and products continues to increase. The average amount spent online over the past 12 months was $489—more than double the $220 average spend noted in the 2016 report.

The study also showed that online spending was highest among the 18 to 34 age group, while those between 45 and 54 years of age saw online spending level off, with a gradual decrease taking place in spending between 54 and 65 years of age.

In summarizing the report and based on the increase in searching for products online, as well as the increase in average spending, Jean-Francois Champagne, President, AIA Canada said, “I think what we are seeing is the reorganization of the automotive supply chain.

à“Disruption is right in front us—and it is taking the form of new partnerships, continued consolidation and new modes of delivery. We’ve seen this happening for some time, and it is likely to continue, as well as accelerate.”

For more details on What’s in Your Online Cart? A Study of Automotive E-tailing in Canada and how to obtain the new report, please contact communications@aiacanada.com.

Categories : Mechanical

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