Mobile Shopping Surges on Cars.com with Launch of iPhone App

Lexus Signs on as First Sponsor of New Shopping App

More and more car shoppers are researching their purchase from a mobile device, according to Cars.com. The website, which launched a mobile site in 2007, has seen a surge in mobile shopping activity since the launch of its car shopping app for the Apple iPhone in February. As much as 10 percent of Cars.com’s traffic now comes via a mobile device, and mobile activity now accounts for a quarter of the site’s total page views.

“Mobile traffic has been a steady source of growth for Cars.com, and devices like the iPhone are contributing to that growth in a big way. Launched just two months ago, the iPhone app already accounts for 60 percent of our overall mobile traffic,” said Mitch Golub, Cars.com president. “Mobile is really a game changer for traditional websites like Cars.com. We’re bringing a whole new level of value to consumers, who can now access our site directly from a dealer lot, and to advertisers, who are able to reach an incremental audience over and above what we are delivering from the Cars.com website. As the first automotive website to offer a comprehensive mobile car shopping experience, it is really paying off for our business.”

Automotive advertisers are taking note of the opportunity to reach in-market car shoppers. After the Cars.com iPhone app received more than 200,000 downloads in its first month, Lexus signed on to sponsor the new offering.

In addition to its new iPhone app, Cars.com recently launched several enhancements to its mobile product, including a new search option that allows shoppers to search specifically for certified used vehicles. Also, to better serve consumers who access the site directly from touch screen devices without using the Cars.com app, Cars.com mobile now leverages device detection capabilities to provide dropdown menus and optimized styling for seamless operation on more than 200 devices.

Cars.com also featured its mobile site in its 60-second ad during the 2010 Super Bowl, which reached the largest audience in television history. As a result, in the 30 days since the Super Bowl, the mobile site experienced a 42 percent gain in average daily unique visitors compared to the same time period last year.(1)

“Whether it’s from their desktop at home or via a mobile device from the dealer lot, we want to offer consumers convenient access to the information they need on Cars.com to confidently make their next car purchasing decision,” added Golub. “As more and more consumers choose to access information from their mobile device, our mobile strategy is crucial to our success and that of our advertisers moving forward.”                                                                                             


[1] Increase does not include traffic to the iPhone app.

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