Shoppers flocked to Cars.comTM (NYSE: CARS), the car shopping marketplace, last night following automakers’ TV commercials that aired during one of the world’s most-watched sporting events. The number of auto commercials doubled compared to 2021, with this year’s event seeing seven auto brands airing eight commercials that led to a 217% average lift on advertiser brand pages on Cars.com. Of the seven automakers that ran a TV ad, six featured an electric vehicle (EV). Cars.com saw an 80% increase in EV page views across its site and apps from fans to learn more about the automaker’s EV models.
“Millions of car shoppers visit Cars.com daily to research every make and model in one place, read unbiased editorial stories and reviews, and connect with local dealers. The immediate boost in site traffic from the big game’s commercials reinforces what we’ve always known: Consumers seek out a trusted third-party source like Cars.com during their car-shopping journey,” said Julie Scott, vice president and general manager of national sales, Cars.com. “At any given time, about 5% of households in a local market are looking to buy a car, so automotive brands are seeking saturation among the 25 million high intent, in-market car shoppers on Cars.com. By targeting a data-rich, trusted marketplace like Cars.com, major brands are in front of active buyers, not just football fans.”
Los Angeles was not the only champion crowned last night, the Polestar 2 had massive spikes in traffic propelling it to the No. 1 spot on Cars.com’s most-visited list during the game. As a new, relatively unknown brand outside of the automotive circles, Polestar stepped into the national spotlight with its Big Game commercial “No Compromises.” The new brand had low visibility on Cars.com prior to their ad spot, but saw a 580x lift to its dedicated pages on the marketplace from EV-curious consumers during the game.
EV commercials, in general, stood out as last night’s MVP with 75% of automaker commercials dedicated to electric vehicles. Interest in electric vehicles is growing. On Cars.com, searches for EVs have almost doubled since last year — however, sales of EVs are growing at a slower rate. There’s no doubt that consumers are paying more attention, especially as more major automakers commit to the category and offer more of the popular SUV and pickup truck options for shoppers. With automakers using the biggest advertising event of the year to focus on EVs, a shift in consumer adoption could be on the horizon.
In addition to Polestar, Kia, BMW, Toyota, Nissan and GM all aired spots during the football championship game. Overall results revealed an average 2361% lift to pages of the specific car makes and models, as well as an average 217% lift in automaker brand pages on Cars.com.
The Big Game commercial roster saw the most lifts for new vehicles, puppies and the Joneses. See below for the automaker teams’ final scores on Cars.com, which figures in total brand page views.
- 921% — Kia brought the cuteness factor with a lost electric pup chasing its owner in Kia’s EV6.
- 782% — BMW “Zeus and Hera” electric-themed commercial promoted the BMW iX.
- 341% — Toyota Tundra features multiple celebrities in a Joneses’ Tundra race.
- 120% — Nissan’s star-studded action commercial shined the spotlight on the Nissan Ariya and Nissan Z.
- 58% — GM’s Chevy recreated the classic “Sopranos” series featuring the onscreen daughter and son of the famed central character to promote the all-electric Chevy Silverado. The gas-power version of the truck also saw a 115% boost from the throw-back commercial.
- 14% — GM’s corporate brand leaned on the nostalgia of Austin Powers’ Dr. Evil character, putting the GMC Hummer EV, electric Chevy Silverado and Cadillac Lyriq from the company’s EV lineup centerstage. The 90s ensemble cast scored a 187% jump for all GM EVs combined.
Not to be outdone, early 1960’s Impalas crashed the halftime show as three of the classic cars were featured during the performance, increasing page views to classic used Impalas by 164% on Cars.com compared to the previous hour.
Cars.com analyzed site traffic patterns for advertised car model pages during the eight minutes before each spot aired and again eight minutes after. General EV traffic patterns were measured week over week.
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