CHICAGO, Jan. 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Cars.com has been named the top review site by car buyers and service customers for the fourth consecutive year in Digital Air Strike's Sixth Annual Automotive Social Media Trends Study©. The study highlights consumer behavior on social networks, review sites and mobile devices related to the car shopping, buying and service experience.
"We are proud to be named the top automotive review site by consumers and remain dedicated to setting the standard for reviews in our industry," said Alex Vetter, president and chief executive officer of Cars.com. "One of the key ways that Cars.com connects consumers and dealers is through our comprehensive reviews database. When consumers get the social proof they're looking for, our site visitors turn into lot visitors and, ultimately, drive sales."
The news of Cars.com's top ranking comes after the company has made strategic moves over the past few years to further improve its reviews feature and maintain its leadership position within the industry. Cars.com led the way into dealership service reviews in 2014 with the launch of its Service & Repair features on the site and RepairPal Certified product for dealers. Online reviews are an integral part of the shopping process for both car buyers and owners looking to service their vehicles.
In August 2016, Cars.com acquired DealerRater, the largest car dealer review site. Four months later, DealerRater's three million reviews officially launched on the Cars.com platform, further expanding its database. DealerRater continues to aggressively grow its footprint by syndicating its reviews across several car shopping sites in the industry, including some of the top-ranked in the Automotive Social Media Trends Study.
"This year's study shows that consumers are relying on social media, online reviews and star ratings more than ever before when they choose a dealership," said Alexi Venneri, co-founder and CEO of Digital Air Strike. "For the fourth year in a row Cars.com was the top site, with 48 percent of car buyers and service customers surveyed saying the site was the most helpful in the dealership selection process."
The Automotive Social Media Trends Study serves as the sixth of its kind produced by Digital Air Strike, and includes findings from 4,000+ car buyers and service customers who either purchased or serviced a vehicle within the previous six months. The study — with data collected in the past 45 days — covers all major U.S. geographic regions and represents domestic and foreign automotive brands, with even distribution across age and gender groups.
Cars.com is a leading online destination that helps car shoppers and owners navigate every turn of car ownership. A pioneer in automotive classifieds, the company has evolved into one of the largest digital automotive platforms, connecting consumers with local dealers across the country anytime, anywhere. Through trusted expert content, on-the-lot mobile app features, millions of new and used vehicle listings, a comprehensive set of research tools and the largest database of consumer reviews in the industry, Cars.com helps shoppers buy, sell and service their vehicles.