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"I've never had a computer." Paradigm shift from next door.


Lot Lizard
Jun 25, 2012
First Name
Last night, I was at a buddy's house and his 21-year old next door neighbor came over and he was showing me his newest phone, a g5 Active. (It's sick.) Anyway, at some point, I moved away from smartphones and asked him what operating system (Windows or Apple) he used on his laptop or whatever.

"Neither," he replied.

"Linux?" I said.

"No, I mean I don't have a computer."

"What happened to the old one?" I asked.

"I've never had a computer," he replied.

"Is that right? Is that right?" was all I could muster. Ha. That was a moment because, being an online marketer for dealerships, I read, hear and experience first hand (Google Analytics) the growth of mobile, but I guess all the stars were aligned for me to just get the message in a big way.

I wanted to know more.

"Ok, so of all your close friends, how many would you say have laptops or desktops?"

"Nobody I know," he said.

I was seriously taken aback. Like I said, he's just 21 and works as a furniture mover so there's no need for him to write papers, which would necessitate a computer under normal circumstances.

"What do I need a computer for? I text, email, research, get maps, shop and do all that stuff from my phone. I always have."

Ok then. Got it. That's a big, first-hand lesson for me.
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Chris Cachor

3rd Base Coach
Apr 29, 2011
First Name
I'm also seeing this trend more each day. Even the smartphone exclusivity part. The whole Steve Jobs "PC's are trucks" analogy is pretty spot on.

Kelly Wilson

3rd Base Coach
Oct 23, 2011
First Name
If this isn't a cry for a fully functioning mobile friendly website for dealers nothing is!
* Do your videos play on all devices?
* Do your links work across all platforms?
* Is the site legible without manipulating the screen?
* Do all of your forms - including secure ones - work?
* How easy is navigation?
* Do your pages look correct on all different platforms - text, actual information, layout
* Are your load times going to discourage shoppers?
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3rd Base Coach
Nov 4, 2012
First Name
For Christmas this year we gave our oldest (14 yrs old) a laptop - we thought mostly for school, but sure he'd play some games.

Nope. It sits on his desk. He uses his phone for homework help and plays games on his various systems.


Dec 30, 2009
First Name

Aren't current cell phones becoming computers that you can also use to call?

I barely call people, first of all because it is hard enough to understand me in person... but I use the phone for all the tasks your friend describes. The laptop (which I'm using right now) comes in handy just because of the screen size.

Recently, and not trying to plug my stuff, we decoded to include in the monthly content strategies a few pages exclusive for mobile searches (we do search a little bit different when using a mobile device). We are trying to reach out to people like your friend.

BTY and to Chris Cachor reference to Jobs; the cost of an iPhone (with no plan) is almost double of the cost of a basic lap top. Things have changed and continue to change. As soon a batteries get better and a bigger screen solution arrives (flexible pull out screens?) it will be game over.


Lot Lizard
Jun 25, 2012
First Name

Talking about screen size, my Galaxy took a nose dive two days ago and was 100% destroyed. I hit up Asurion with my insurance claim and they didn't have my model in stock so they tried to push the Samsung Mega on me. What! That thing was ridiculous! It was so big that I just cracked up. Anyway, my point is that they are making these phones so much bigger that the line between phone and tablet is vanishing.

I've definitely talked to my team and am making sure that mobile gets even more respect, if that's possible.

Jeff Kershner

May 1, 2005
First Name
This doesn't surprise me. It does but then it doesn't.

Cars.com recently commissioned a study with the research firm Placed Inc. to better understand how car shoppers use their mobile devices during the shopping process, and to learn how mobile affects consumer decisions on dealership lots.

What did they find?

25% of consumers used ONLY a smartphone to research their next vehicle before visiting a dealership.

That’s a big chunk. Higher than I would have expected, but then again… maybe not. I find myself researching particular items on my iPhone only. Usually for less expensive items, and off the cuff purchase.

What did you last research or purchase using your iPhone or Android phone only?
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Jun 28, 2011
First Name
Jeff, it doesn't depend on the cost of the item but where I am when it dawns on me to research. I would always prefer to use my computer with a nice keyboard and big screen.
I sent that study to a friend. I have been telling her that her website, using mobile, is horrible. The factory mandates a Dealer.com website but they continue to use this other one as their main site.