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Survey Finds that More Americans Plan to Travel by Car in 2021

KENNESAW, GA December 2020  — UpSwell Marketing, a marketing firm that specializes in helping local businesses expand their customer base, today announced the findings of their recent auto consumer survey. The survey found that 68 percent of people surveyed plan to travel by car in 2021 as opposed to only 21 percent who plan to travel by plane. The survey also provided key insights into what consumers look for when selecting an auto repair shop.

“While consumer spending in many industries, including the auto industry, has been down during the COVID-19 pandemic, the survey findings were positive for our auto repair shop clients,” said Tim Ross, co-founder and president of UpSwell Marketing. “Many consumers have viewed driving as a safer mode of travel than flying during the pandemic and this trend will continue into next year. It is a great time for auto repair shops to evaluate their current marketing strategy to ensure that they are reaching potential customers.”

The survey results highlight the most effective marketing strategies for auto repair shops to invest in. Reputation management should remain top of mind as 59 percent of respondents said they rely on word of mouth when deciding which auto repair shop to visit. While 41 percent of respondents took their search online, saying that they normally select an auto repair shop through a Google search. This underscores the importance of a strong search engine optimization (SEO) and pay-per-click (PPC) strategy. Promotional/direct mail rounded out the top three, with 11 percent of respondents citing it as how they select an auto repair shop.

A surprising finding from the survey was that the 24-29 age group relied on direct mail more than the other age groups surveyed, with 14 percent citing it as a way to choose an auto repair shop. Only 5 percent of respondents aged 45-54 relied on direct mail.

When it came to deciding factors for choosing an auto shop value/pricing was the top factor, selected by 65 percent of respondents. Reputation came in second, with 60 percent factoring reviews and reputation into their decision-making process. Answers varied by demographics, with respondents aged 45-54 citing reputation as equally important to value/pricing and respondents earning over $200k citing reputation as more important than value/pricing.

Convenience and customer service were other top factors cited in choosing an auto repair shop, by 47 percent and 38 percent of respondents, respectively. Another interesting finding was that while many valued convenience, the average amount of time respondents were willing to drive to an auto shop was 27 minutes. The survey was conducted in November 2020 and included 555 respondents in the United States, aged 25-54. All respondents were vehicle owners and primary decision makers in their households. For the full survey results reach out to [email protected].

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About UpSwell Marketing

UpSwell Marketing is a full-service agency offering over 20 digital and print capabilities that help small and medium-sized businesses attract more customers while optimizing their marketing budgets. UpSwell, founded in 2020 through the merger of Muscle Up Marketing and Mudlick Mail, has more than 12 years of marketing experience serving over 10,000 clients, executing more than 150,000 campaigns, and a track record of helping clients acquire over 10 million new customers and counting.

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