IHS Polk datasets: FAQ
The available attributes can vary depending on your company's IHS Polk subscription, and can also vary depending on whether you are using the New Registrations or Used Registrations dataset.
|Attribute or filter name||Description||Available in New Registrations||Available in Used Registrations|
|Polk base attributes||Dealer Count (number)||The number of dealers||√||√|
|New Registrations (number)||The number of new car registrations||√|
|Used Registrations (number)||The number of used car registrations||√|
|Dealer-related filters||Dealer||A concatenation of Dealer Name and Dealer Address (useful to find dealers with similar names)||√||√|
|Dealer Address||A dealer's address||√||√|
|Dealer City||A dealer's city||√||√|
|Dealer DMA Code||A dealer's DMA code||√||√|
|Dealer DMA Name||A dealer's DMA name||√||√|
|Dealer Name||A dealer's name||√||√|
|Dealer State||A dealer's state||√||√|
|Dealer ZIP Code||A dealer's state||√||√|
|Latitude||The map coordinates of a dealer||√||√|
|Purchase-related filters||Date||The date of the registration||√||√|
|Make||The make of the registered car||√||√|
|Model||The model of the registered car||√||√|
|Model Year||The model year of the registered car||√|
|Segment||The segment the registered car belongs to||√||√|
|Demographic-related filters||Age||The age of the car buyer||√||√|
|Ethnicity||The ethnicity of the car buyer||√||√|
|Gender||The sex of the car buyer||√||√|
|Income||The income level of the car buyer||√||√|
IHS Polk releases data each month, though that data is for a previous month. (For example. June registration data is released in the middle of August; this delay allows IHS Polk to thoroughly collect all registration data for the month of June.)
We also update our data monthly, typically within a few days of receiving the updates from IHS Polk.
Car registration data comes individual states, car manufacturers, finance companies, and other third-party sources. However, not all states and not all car manufacturers report the same level of information. All new registrations are recorded for all vehicles in all states, down to the ZIP Code level. However, some manufacturers and some states don't report dealer-level information. For example, while it's possible to know the number of BMWs sold in a particular New York ZIP Code, it's not possible to know which dealers sold them.
Use the following graphics provided by Polk to understand why data might not be available for some states or manufacturers. Click the thumbnails to enlarge the images. (You can also download the entire Selling Dealer Data Availability sheet from http://bit.ly/1Wifg7y.)
Demographic information can be a great way to glean more insight into car purchase trends. Be aware, though, that -- as is the case for all demographics -- the age, income, gender, and ethnicity attributes are often the result of best-faith estimates, self-reporting, or both. IHS Polk uses a third-party provider to extract demographic information for each registration.
The methodology for assigning demographic information to a registration is as follows:
- Age and income are modeled "head of household" data that are based on the name and address given on the title and registration.
- Ethnicity is derived from the first name, last name, and ZIP Code on the title and registration.
- Gender is assigned based on the honorific (Mr., Mrs., Dr., etc.) used on the title and registration:
- When the title includes both Mr. and Mrs. (for example, Mr. and Mrs. Chris Smith), the first honorific is used. This is especially important in cases where the name can be either male or female. In this example, the registration's gender attribute has a value of male.
- When the honorific is Dr. and the name can be either male or female (again, Dr. Chris Smith), the registration gender has a value of unknown.
It's more difficult to collect used registrations, in part because selling a used car is often a private transaction. For those states who report used registrations (see Figure 1), the information comes from the updated registration and title (a change in the last name and address associated with the original registration), or from those car manufacturers who run certified pre-owned programs.
When people purchase cars, they don't always register them at the purchasing dealer. They may register them at a dealer closer to home. Therefore, Dealer DMA isn't always a true indication of where a car was sold; it reflects only where the car was actually registered.
In tables, you'll typically see columns for (or options for columns for) New Registrations (unfiltered) and New Registrations (%). Unfiltered registrations are all of the registrations for the area or time period you are looking at; in other words, all of the registrations, without any of the filters (dealer, zip, age, income, make, model, etc.) you are applying. The percentage reflects the filtered results.
Let's look at an example. Here we're examining registrations for Robinson Bros. Ford Lincoln in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
|ZIP Code||New Registrations||New Registrations (unfiltered)||New Registrations (%)|
As we can see, there were no sales for this particular dealer in the 70052 ZIP Code, although there were a total of 44 car sales (any make) there. Therefore, Robinson Bros Ford Lincoln had zero percent market share of the new registrations in that ZIP Code. However, they did sell 22 of the 771 total cars in the 70737 ZIP Code, which accounted for 2.85% of all cars sold in that ZIP Code.
You can download a spreadsheet with information on Polk segments. This information was made available by IHS Polk and is current as of this writing.
If you don't see your question answered in this topic, check with Rhiza support or with your IHS Polk representative.
© 2016, Rhiza, Inc. All rights reserved. Last updated June 01, 2016 02:40:08 PM.