Mobile News Mix

4 Mobile Data Points Reveal How Income Impacts Gasoline Preferences

Posted by MFour on Sep 6, 2018 11:35:13 AM

Blog gas pump 6Sept18 

Gas stations are perhaps the most common ground for American consumers. The U.S. was home to 222 million licensed drivers as of 2016, according to the Census Bureau. They all need to buy gas, and any brand on the market will take them where they need to go.

However, gasoline consumers’ income can have a big impact on where they buy. There is a gap between ARCO, known for low prices and for not accepting credit cards, and Costco, which also features low prices, but requires a $60 membership fee.

  • During the 90-day stretch from early June through Labor Day, consumers who earned less than $35,000 per year accounted for 49% of ARCO stations’ traffic.
  • The same income bracket made up just 27% of Costco’s gasoline business.
  • At the other end of the income spectrum, Costco drew 37% of its gasoline business from consumers earning $75,000 or more.
  • Only 18% of ARCO’s visits during the summer driving season came from people whose household incomes topped $75,000.

It’s not just a matter of price differential. According to a report from Business Insider, Costco was the least expensive gasoline option, per gallon, in 17 states. And in California, which has the greatest number of ARCO stations, anecdotal evidence suggests that Costco competes well on price, although there are far more ARCO stations – six times as many in the Los Angeles DMA, for example.

  • How heavily does that $60 membership fee figure into Costco’s consumer profiles?
  • Is the membership fee the biggest hurdle keeping lower-income drivers from making Costco their brand?
  • Or, for drivers in DMAs where ARCO and Costco compete, is the convenience of having more stations available a stronger factor in lower-income drivers' preference for ARCO?

The data on gas station visits, and on who those visitors are based on income, age and many more demographic characteristics, comes instantly into view for users of MFour’s Path-2-Purchase® Platform. You’ll observe and track the daily journeys of validated, first-party consumer panel members who have opted in to participate in location-based research.

Knowing precisely who they are, and exactly where they go, gives you unprecedented opportunities to identify in an instant the population segments you need to study and understand.

But Path-2-Purchase® isn’t just for collecting data from known audiences. It takes you a step further by arming you with instant data visualizations that help you identify new, research-relevant audiences to approach, and new questions to ask.

Studies based on Path-2-Purchase® segmentation and targeting will get you fast responses from real consumers whose characteristics you’ll know before you even field your survey. You’ll come away with a real understanding based on observing and talking to real people who'll tell you the "why" behind the observational data you already have.

With the launch of Path-2-Purchase® you finally have a choice. You can continue to depend on third-party data and settle for inferences and assumptions rather than direct knowledge as to who consumers actually are and what really motivates them. Or step up to validated, first-party opinions that reveal the motivations and emotions of actual, carefully-profiled mobile consumers. 

There’s lots more to explore on your way to premium data and high-octane consumer insights that dispense with inferences and put you in touch with direct reality.  To check out the Path-2-Purchase® dashboard, just click here. And for a productive discussion about how the platform can power your projects’ specific needs, get in touch by clicking here.

Topics: Path-2-Purchase™ Platform, GeoValidation, geolocation, market research, consumer insights, data visualization

Case Study: Tackling the Mystery of the Non-Buyer with Mobile GeoIntercepts

Posted by MFour on Sep 5, 2018 9:17:40 AM

Blog Intercepts 4Sept18

Football season is back (yessss!!), and with it comes a tip for consumer insights pros: one of the key performance indicators for a market research team’s success is how well it can intercept consumers during their natural buying journeys.

In the NFL, interceptions are often game-changers, and it takes a rare combination of talent and skill to intercept. The key attributes are quickness and anticipation, and an uncanny knack for being in just the right position when the ball is in the air.

Quickness and being in the right place at the right time are also crucial to collecting quality consumer data that will give decision-making stakeholders the field position they need to advance their companies’ or brands’ marketing and sales goals.

In theory, retailers can get reliable (albeit seldom timely) data on what’s actually being bought. But they get no real insight into customers' motivations – the "why" behind the "what." The problem becomes exponentially harder when the subject is non-buying behavior. Who entered a store but failed to buy everything they’d intended to purchase? What did they not buy? Why did it happen, and how much revenue did the store leave on the table?

The answers, and the ability to defend against non-buying, won’t be forthcoming unless customer experience research teams learn how to intercept.

There’s no better way to collect premium data than by intercepting it from consumers naturally, and in real time, as they go about their daily buying journeys. So in the spirit of NFL players poring over game film to get a competitive edge, let’s look at a case study that illustrates how natural intercepts work.

The Problem: Researchers for a leading retail chain that does a huge volume in CPG sales were trying to tackle one of their business’s most frustrating problems: losing revenue because many customers who entered a store didn't buy everything they had intended to purchase.

The Answer: For the retail chain in question, all it took was a discussion with MFour reps about GeoValidation® – a proprietary capability driven by the advanced GPS technology embedded in the Surveys on the Go® research app. Clients track app-using U.S. consumers’ movements and verify when they arrive and then leave a location of research interest.

  • In this case, all members of MFour’s first-party consumer panel who entered one of the client’s stores were located on arrival, and received a push notification of a survey opportunity upon departure.
  • When they responded – with a 25% response rate within an hour and 50% within 24 hours – the process of intercept followed by data return was complete.
  • Qualifiers for the study were 400 consumers nationwide, who said they had not purchased everything they had intended to buy.
  • In beauty products, 31% of non-purchasers cited price as the factor that discouraged them from buying; 37% said they had simply been unable to find the item they wanted, or that it was not available.
  • For shoppers looking for personal care products, 31% cited price and 28% cited unavailability or inability to find the intended item.
  • Among candy and snack intenders, 20% said they didn’t buy because of pricing, and 24% because what they wanted wasn’t there or couldn’t be found.
  • Among grocery and beverage shoppers who said they had left without an item they had arrived intending to purchase, 44% cited price and 24% said items were not available or couldn’t be found.
  • Asked whether they were satisfied with their overall shopping experience, 57% of non-buyers rated their visit as an 8 or a 9 on a nine-point satisfaction scale. 24% graded their experience in the poor to middling range (1 to 6 on the scale).

The study gave the client clarity on factors that were costing it millions in revenue each day nationwide, and potentially alienating many customers. The previously unobtainable data from natural intercepts gave researchers their first clearly-informed look at the problem, so they could recommend a game plan to win back the sales and revenue that the chain’s stores were letting slide through their hands.

For an informative and productive conversation about how to program natural intercepts into your research game plan, just click here.

Topics: in-store, GeoValidation, non-buyers, market research, consumer insights, retail, geolocation, location based survey

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