Consumers Desire More Pet-Friendly Features in Vehicles
According to the results from an American Pet Products Association’s survey, 37% of pet owners take their animals on road trips—this is significantly higher than the statistic 10 years ago, which was 19%. Per a TripAdvisor survey, 53% of participants claimed that they travel with their pets; 52% of those surveyed said they book only pet-friendly lodging when they’re traveling.
With the surging popularity of websites like BringFido.com, Petfriendlytravel.com, and TripsWithPets.com, it’s no surprise that the auto industry itself is starting to notice and brainstorm ways to cater to pet-owning customers.
Google just released the results of the 2018 Auto Trends Report. Although this document does delve into the increased demand for in-vehicle cameras, the first part of the report briefly touches on the increased consumer emphasis on pet-friendly vehicle features. As Yarden Horwitz, the trendspotting lead for Google, articulated, “Consumers are also going to figure out how to enhance the driving experience for the pet who is their newest family member. Millennials are thinking of pets as their family members, so they are going to rethink how a car is being used by pets.”
The 2018 Auto Trends Report also highlighted how this trend is more pronounced in America rather than in other countries, as the report itself declared. “While consumers in Germany and Japan are also searching for pet-related vehicle equipment and accessories, the average American was 36 times as likely to search than the average person in Germany and 10 times as likely than the average person in Japan.”
Exactly what pet-friendly car accessories were people searching for? According to the report, the top trending terms included products such as seat covers, dog seat belts, dog car seats, and dog steps (to help your dog get in your vehicle more easily).
As Google’s findings indicate, it might behoove mainstream automakers to start including more pet-friendly features in their vehicles, considering how many car owners value not just their own safety and convenience, but also their pet’s.